As someone who has spent a lot of time, and made music many times, with Danny Tate since 1989, it was heartbreaking to read this story ("Court-Ordered Hell," Jan. 21). I have had my own struggles with the demon of addiction. In fact, one of the things Danny and I have shared over the years is in our recovery. When I'd travel to L.A. in the 1990s, Danny would be the first guy I would call to take me to AA meetings out there. Anyone who wants to paint Danny Tate as a down-and-out loser clearly doesn't know him. He has been nothing less than a kind, generous and humble friend to me.
Addiction is a devastating, horrible disease, and any of us that have it have to be vigilant in protecting our sobriety on a daily basis. If we "slip" the road to ruin is fast, quick, and thorough. It is clear from reading this article that Judge Kennedy was somehow predisposed to throw away the keys on Mr. Tate. Why? God only knows. I cannot speak to the reasons that Danny's brother David has acted in this fashion. I'm sure at first this seemed like the prudent thing to do.
The point is, I know Danny. He is a good man through and through. Any man or woman that is willing to be contrite and offer themselves up to the God of their understanding and the world they live in deserves a chance to do just that.
John E. Cowan —Nashville
Great cover story on Danny Tate ("Court-Ordered Hell," Jan. 21). A similar thing is going on with my best friend who fell and had a closed head injury. Even though she is fine now, her conservator still has her living in a "mental health" group home. No attempt to rehabilitate her has ever been done. Her condo and car were sold. Any attempt to get this changed has been ignored. It's a living nightmare for her. Something needs to be done about the system in Davidson for granting these conservatorships, and therefore stripping people of ALL their rights.
Mary Jane Watson —Nashville
Thanks so much for the thorough article on my friend Danny Tate ("Court-Ordered Hell," Jan. 21). Danny and I attended high school and college together (Ouachita is the spelling by the way). He is a gifted man and I have to believe a great injustice has been done to him. My husband and I have felt at a loss as to how to help him. I think having the facts in the media may now give this situation some attention so it can be altered. I have a degree in journalism and taught high school journalism for 16 years and I truly appreciate the detailed job that Brantley [Hargrove] did on the story.
Janie Baber &mdash Nashville
I know Danny [Tate] and I am aware of his personal demons and the battle with drugs and alcohol, but I have never known him to be the kind of addict who would hock his studio gear to support his habits ("Court-Ordered Hell," Jan. 21). An addict, yes ... but not a man who was or is "out of his mind." If anything, Danny is all too aware of his addictions and has made valiant and effective efforts to not let it get in the way of his ability to support himself.
I am shocked, beyond belief, with the behavior of his brother, lawyers and judge in this case. It is the lowest form of exploitation and opportunism I have ever heard of with regard to the violation of an individual's civil rights. To say it is an outrage, is to understate the meaning of the word. The Honorable Judge Kennedy has proven himself to be a legal "hack."
I wish I could continue, but I just can't.
Danny, I'm sorry, man. You are loved, and you're not alone.
James Erdman —Nashville
Your story about Danny Tate shows an out-of-control legal system full of arrogance funneled into the waiting arms of money-grabbing lawyers ("Court-Ordered Hell," Jan. 21). Truly disgusting!
Peter Quinn —Nashville
Mr. Hargrove, I used to think you were a decent journalist. This hack job on Judge Kennedy ("Court-Ordered Hell," Jan. 21) removes any such notion.
Karl Warden —Nashville
Perhaps a refresher reading of The Tennessean's "ethical principles" espoused by its then-editor with much hoopla in its edition of June 15, 1999, would be instructive for its current editor and publisher ("The Anticlimax," Jan. 21):
"WE ARE COMMITTED TO:
• We will remain free of outside interests, investments or business relationships that may compromise the credibility of our news report.
• We will maintain an impartial arm's length relationship with anyone seeking to influence the news.
• We will avoid potential conflicts of interest and eliminate inappropriate influence on content.
• We will be free of importer obligations to news sources, newsmakers and advertisers.
• We will differentiate advertising from news."
So just what was it that motivated The Tennessean to be the first to report the donors list one day AFTER the Metro Council vote? Political campaign contributions are generally released BEFORE the vote is taken.
Jim Charlet —Brentwood
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