Living too large
Re "Digging out of debt," Business, March 25
Your article should have been titled "Getting what you deserve."
I am infuriated by the families you profiled. They lived foolishly: staying at 5-star hotels, buying time-shares, driving Mercedes and Jaguars and collecting thousands of bottles of very expensive wine. They took little responsibility for their spending and were grossly materialistic.
What baffles me is why you chose to write about these families. What about the families who live within their means, pay off their credit cards every month, shop for needs, not whims, and buy houses they can afford? They struggle in this economy but are not inundated with debt, stay solvent and live full, healthy and happy lives.
The families in your story are not inspirational, just pathetic.
Dodgers: Lots of green, some blue
Re "A new brand of moneyball," March 29
I keep wondering where all of these successful and savvy billionaires were eight years ago when they could have bought the Dodgers for $430 million in borrowed money rather than for the billions that they were willing to pay now.
Mitt Romney, your running mate has been found — Frank McCourt must be the most successful "vulture capitalist" ever.
He and his ex-wife siphoned off millions of dollars, fired people left and right, ran the business into the ground and now look to cash out big time.
Romney couldn't have done any better.
Let's check the scoreboard:
We don't have enough money to provide healthcare to sick kids, but we've got enough money to
reward Frank McCourt perhaps a billion dollars for bankrupting the Dodgers.
What inning are we in?
It is beyond my comprehension that anyone who has followed the saga of Frank McCourt and the Dodgers since he tossed them into bankruptcy after using them as his personal ATM would consider maintaining any kind of relationship with him.
What were Magic and his group thinking in aligning themselves with someone so despised in Southern California, and not demanding a complete separation?
I will never go back to Dodger Stadium as long as McCourt profits in any way from my attending a game.
The idea that McCourt walks away with so much money after the unconscionably arrogant way he treated the organization, the fans and the community is repugnant to me. Stop the celebrating and ask "why?"
Making sure 'Bully' is seen
Re " 'Bully' fight," Opinion, March 28
As a veteran teacher, I know the importance of this topic. The documentary should be seen by as many people as possible, of all ages.
Because "Bully" earned an R rating over the use
of a certain expletive,
repeated a few times, there is a simple solution: Bleep the word, block the mouth of the person(s) uttering it (so lip readers can't see it), and voila — problem solved.
As most informed commentators attest, the film "Bully" is a learning experience and worthwhile for young people to view.
There are two ways those 17 and under can see the film:
Have your parents take you. If it's truly the teaching tool everyone says it is, every parent should want their child to see it and to view it themselves to stimulate discussion back home.
Or, as so many kids already do, just buy a ticket for another movie that's not rated R and then go to the theater showing "Bully."
Rancho Santa Margarita
If "Bully's" filmmakers and distributors are so concerned about the safety of young people, yet they want their film to receive the widest possible distribution, they should have considered how necessary the repeated profanities in their film are to its message, rather than bullying the MPAA to make an exception to its guidelines.
A fallen Marine, finally identified
Re "1974 slaying victim was a Marine," March 20
According to The Times, the body of Oral Alfred Stuart Jr., known as "Buddy," has been identified 37 years after his disappearance.
The Marine Corps enlisted man was classified as a deserter when he was reported absent without authorization from Camp Pendleton.
Long Beach cold-case detectives recently identified him as the man who was murdered at a Long Beach carport in 1974.
It is fitting that the Marine Corps is replacing the "John Doe" marker with a headstone and a "full honor guard funeral" at the cemetery.
The Long Beach Police Department and the U.S. Naval Criminal Investigative Service deserve credit for their efforts in solving the case when all seemed lost.
Trayvon Martin as a symbol
Re "Playing the race card," Opinion, March 27, and "Florida teen's parents take case to Capitol Hill, " March 28
What if the inability to view Trayvon Martin so personally, the incapacity to grasp and understand and identify with him, is the very same twisted trait that sees America's middle class, poor and minorities as someone else's people and someone else's problem?
The cold objections of Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum to President Obama's words reveal a lack of understanding, and their reactions add more wood to the fire of America's chronic problems with race. Maybe Dick Cheney is not the only Republican who needs a heart transplant.
Think of it this way: If Gingrich, Santorum and many of the rest of us were able to look at Martin and say "that could be my son," we might have fewer such tragedies.
Most coverage of the Martin shooting has focused on the complex problems of racism and stereotyping.
Yet the tragedy also highlights a simple fact:
When people who lack professional training, discretion and accountability carry guns, we are all at the mercy of their prejudices and impulses.
It really should not matter if Martin was white, black or any other color of the rainbow. A young man shot and killed by a self-appointed protector is more than a tragedy.
Trayvon was 17 years old. He had not yet begun to live his life, and we are poorer for his loss.
It is heartening to see that the Republican
contenders for the White House agree that this case must be thoroughly
In all of the coverage, what I am not seeing mention of is the real reason for Martin's death: the gun.
Guns continue to be a plague on our society. There is no place for handguns that are only used to kill other humans.
Without guns, maybe these young people would have had a fistfight. Nobody would be dead.
Re "Bronze Lorax statue stolen," March 28
Oh no! Say it ain't so!
You wrote about "the apparent theft of a 300-pound bronze statue of the Lorax from the La Jolla estate of the late ... Dr. Seuss."
The article goes on to say: "On the base of the statue is the word 'unless.' The Lorax is a creature that speaks for the trees, warning that unless more trees are planted, they will disappear from the Earth."
I know what happened: The little guy was
kidnapped and is being held for ransom by far-right GOP extremists! Not to be released "unless" environmental regulations are weakened!
Rancho Palos Verdes