Letters: Wednesday, September 27, 2006
Born Again

To the editor: Thanks for the mention of our ministry in the Last Call article “He’s Not Here!?” (Aug. 30, 2006). The Born Again Motorcycle Ministry (abbreviated as Born Again M/M, not BAMM) is reaching out to the “outlaw” biker community.

I’d like to clarify a couple of points. First, Born Again M/M was founded out of Hillside Community Church in Keller. Although we provide worship services at He’s Not Here, a Fort Worth bar, our group is not affiliated with this establishment, but we do appreciate the hospitality that the managers have extended to us. We do not sport the Confederate flag.

Second, the article left the impression that our members were drinking while services were being conducted. This was not the case. While our group does not require its members to abstain from alcohol, we do not partake during worship services, and we do not tolerate drunkenness. The management of He’s Not Here has chosen to serve alcohol while services are being conducted, and patrons of the bar have been known to drink during this time.

As the president of Born Again M/M, I am very dedicated to its goal of reaching out to people who do not know Jesus Christ, wherever they may be found. I am also very protective of our ministry and the people serving in it. For those who may find it upsetting that we preach in a bar, I suggest you look at where Jesus himself went to preach.

Patrick Wade

Fort Worth

Hicks and Integrity

To the editor: Your article on Kathleen Hicks (“Hicks on the Hotseat,” Sept. 13, 2006) reinforced for me that the issues most politicians struggle with are not related to race, but to integrity. Ms. Hicks appears to have put integrity ahead of “pay-offs” to possibly ethically challenged business backers. We need to support decision-making that reflects integrity and impartial concern for the public good.

Cynthia B. McKenzie

Fort Worth

Lost in Office

To the editor: After reading Betty Brink’s excellent article (“Lost in the Ozone,” Sept. 6, 2006), I came to a sickening conclusion: As long as Rick Perry is governor and Joe Barton is chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, we can forget about reducing our increasing pollution and energy costs. The oil, gas, and electric companies contribute millions to Barton’s and Perry’s re-election campaigns to insure that they won’t be forced to purchase costly pollution controls, clean up contaminated sites, or allow government oversight of their toxic emissions, safety inspections, or price increases.

Perry and Barton don’t appear to be the least bit concerned that our high ozone levels have been linked to an increase in ozone alert days and new asthma cases, that many of their elderly constituents living on fixed incomes were forced this year to choose between buying life-saving medicines or turning on their life-saving air-conditioning, that residents just suffered through the hottest and driest summer in history, both linked to global warming, or that unregulated gas drilling is lowering the water table and has left hundreds of residents without water.

Unfortunately, the only hope that Texans have of getting greed out of the energy industry, ozone out of the air, and mercury out of the water depends on voting Perry and Barton out of office.

Sharon Austry

Fort Worth

Democracy in


To the editor: I spoke at the Tarrant County Commissioners Court on Aug. 29 — the deadline for the court to place the issue on the November ballot regarding tax relief for the disabled and those over 65. Still, I had to watch the meeting twice more on city cable television to know for certain what happened.

Oscar Garcia, speaker pro-tem of the Texas Silver Haired Legislature; Dave McElwee, president of a political action group in Arlington; and I, former mayor of Haltom City, all spoke, to no avail.

We had asked to be present when the 43,000-plus signatures calling for the tax freeze election were validated by county officials and when ballot language was formulated for the November election. We were ignored on both. The result was a lengthy and sometimes unfriendly dialogue between the court and the spokespeople for the elderly and disabled. Then Commissioner J.D. Johnson made a motion to freeze the property tax as requested, without an election — and somehow, the five-member commission came up with a tie vote. Commissioners Marti VanRavenswaay and Glen Whitley voted against it, Commissioners Johnson and Roy Brooks voted for it, and, as it turned out, County Judge Tom Vandergriff voted both ways. The judge had pushed both the “for” and “against” buttons. When Johnson asked for another vote and the same thing happened, Judge Vandergriff said, “It speaks for itself,” generating a laugh from the crowd. Then he switched off his “for” light, and Johnson’s motion failed. Eventually, the commissioners voted to put the tax freeze on the ballot, using language recommended by the county’s lawyer.

Democracy in action — sometimes not smooth, but nevertheless the voters will have their say in November. Thank God for freedom of the press and speech. May God bless America and all those fighting for this freedom overseas.

Jack O. Lewis

Haltom City


In the Sept. 20, 2006, “Best Of 2006” issue, the late Jerry Flemmons was referred to as the former book editor of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. He was the paper’s long-time travel editor.

In the same edition, in the photo caption on page 14, a tattoo artist was misidentified. He is Jarrod Richardson, owner of the tattoo parlor in question.

Fort Worth Weekly regrets the errors.

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