Love/Hate Mail 

Editor's Note

Editor's Note

:I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

—Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

This week, we announce the return of Henry Walker, media critic, who will be writing the “Desperately Seeking the News” column every other week. Our regular media critic, Matt Pulle, will share the column-writing duties with Walker. The move frees up Pulle to do more general assignment reporting. It also allows us to get Walker’s voice in the paper.

Meanwhile, congratulations to Marc K. Stengel, our automotive writer, who has captured a number of prizes in the 2000 International Automotive Media Awards. In addition to placing second among 470 entries for a three-part series titled “Romancing the Road,” Marc won a silver prize in the regularly published column category, and a bronze prize in road test writing.

It’s an honor to publish Stengel, one of the best automotive critics in the country.

—B.D.

Divinity by another name

Good story on the Vanderbilt divinity school (“Searching for God,” Jan. 11), but it strikes me as odd [that] a school would have teachers or students that don’t believe. What’s the point? It is kind of like dedicating your life to teaching [that there is] life on Mars, when you don’t believe there is, was, or will be life on Mars. What is the benefit of pursuing something you don’t believe in, unless, like the wolf in the hen house, your goal is to teach others not to believe? If so, what a negative and cynical life path.

Maybe the divinity school should change its name to better suit its purpose. How about the “Vanderbilt School of Agnostic Liberal Social Activism,” or the “Vanderbilt School of Christian Debunking”? The curriculum would the same, but the name and purpose would be more in line.

Pete Barnham

pbarnham@yahoo.com. (Nashville)

Vote no on lottery vote

Regarding Liz Murray Garrigan’s take-it-to-the-voters posturing (Political Notes, Jan. 11): enough! We don’t need a referendum on a lottery. That’s why we elect legislators. It is time for them to stand up, find their backbones, swallow hard, and solve our tax problems themselves without passing that responsibility back to the voters who elected them in the first place. Call it self-righteous preaching if you like, Liz, but the fact remains that a lottery does not work without standing on the backs of the poor and downtrodden, the very people least likely to vote. A lottery as a solution to some of our budget woes is easy, it is cowardly, but it is a far cry from fair or just.

Janet Hilley

jthilley@hotmail.com.

Loyal to the end

I am writing to offer a dissenting opinion on a few issues brought up by Matt Pulle. (Desperately Seeking the News, Jan. 11). To begin with, I am a writer for In Review. I continue to consider myself a staff person of In Review, as our publisher, Boyer Barner, is still seeking a way to revive the paper. As far as I am concerned, I will be an employee until Boyer says he has completely given up.

I feel the need to state this clearly as Pulle, a former In Review employee, is trying his best to scare off any investors from reviving our competing paper by talking a bunch of smack about us in his column on a regular basis. So please let it be known that there are a bunch of us out here who would be back on staff at In Review in a heartbeat if it is revived. We would return because Boyer let people truly speak their minds in his publication. Matt Pulle, in fact, expressed this exact sentiment to me right before he left our paper to work for your gutless little fish wrapper.

I would also like to question Pulle’s use of the phrase “wet-behind-the-ears” when describing The City Paper, our new local daily. It should be pointed out that it has only been a few years since Matt “Edward R. Murrow” Pulle was a gangly doofus who was as green as a Belle Meade Boulevard front lawn when it came to the newspaper business. And who was it that turned him into the Ring Lardner of the 8th Avenue Antique District? Why, it was his former mentor Boyer Barner, a guy who Pulle once said was, “the best boss I’ve ever had.” The resumes of a number of the people at The City Paper would look overwhelming in comparison to Pulle’s at the time Boyer Barner was kind enough to give him his start.

Finally, let me clear something up. Yes, Boyer does owe me money. Hell, who doesn’t he owe money to? But the paper was started on a shoestring and ended on an eyelash, so that’s to be expected. But I can say for certain that if In Review comes back, I’ll be there without reservation.

Charles Earle

clubnash@ctrvax.Vanderbilt.Edu. (Nashville)

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