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Dear Commie Girl, I must tragically inform you of the factual inaccuracies in your article [Rebecca Schoenkopf's "Who's Your Daddy?" Jan 16]: (1) Our seats are not floor seats; they are actually four rows up from the floor, behind the Lakers bench, on the aisle. (2) [Husband] Mike no longer looks like Lenin—shaved off the goatee. (3) I am not the DA's "muscle"; I am unfortunately quite flabby. (4) I don't know why you think that I can't run "Hell" from anywhere in the world with my cell phone and Blackberry.
Susan Kang Schroeder
Thanks for Theo Douglas' article "Von Who?" [Jan. 9]. Orange County is the "Land of the Brand." Heaven forbid the fashion savvy cruise down Main St. HB without advertising the latest name or logo on every piece of clothing. I most recently spotted the VD logo on a pair of panties worn by a go-go dancer at the Liquid Lounge. Cute! However, do these monkeys (props to Paul Frank—we do love Julius!) know what's behind the logo they're sporting? In the case of Von Dutch, apparently not. The tragedy of the Von Dutch Originals clothing brand story is that such a good concept has been dragged through the mud of Hollywood and has long lost its authenticity with the car-culture of Los Angeles. The powers-that-be at VD are only concerned with slapping their name on any celeb they can sucker into putting on a trucker hat for five minutes. This is evident on their website: www.vondutch.com. Do we really care that AJ McLean, Sofia Vergara and Aaron Carter were spotted wearing the VD trucker cap?
Looking for purity in branding? It's going to be hard to find. However, names like Patagonia stand above and beyond the rest when it comes to integrity. So next time you decide to fork over $42 for a designer hat at Hot Topic, or $180 for pair of "kustom" jeans on Melrose, think again. That hat cost about $6 to make. The jeans? Around $21. Those "destroyed" jeans you desire are probably waiting for you at your local Goodwill.
I am one of the people who were in the "Stop the Hate" campaign and in every article that my friends and I were mentioned in, that I read, my friends and I were praised for the campaign that we led. Well, all except one. In Gustavo Arellano's ["The Hate Crime That Wasn't" June 28, 2002], Arellano put down every aspect of our "Stop the Hate" campaign and even went as far as to question our truthfulness by asking for more evidence than a "crudely drawn tale" that he basically implies we made up. I found it interesting that in your newest issue your cover story was an informative article written by Theo Douglas trying to inform the public about the truth and history behind the "Von Dutch" brand name. Weird. Isn't that exactly what the "Stop the Hate" campaign was all about?
Gustavo Arellano replies: My story questioned your campaign's crass reductionism of the history of the Iron Cross. In attempting to link the Iron Cross to Hitler, your ill-informed campaign among Newport Harbor High School students never mentioned that the Cross predated Hitler by five centuries.
God forgive me, but I think your piece about the mountain lion press conference [Steve Lowery's "The Lion Speaks Tonight," Jan. 16] is the funniest thing I've ever read anywhere.
Last year, we moved to northern Idaho. Folks in these parts have been asking me lately about Orange County, a place where folks ride their bicycles and throw rocks at mountain lions. Explaining Orange County to folks who have to drive 250 miles to the nearest mall is like trying to explain real life to a Democrat. The bicycle part doesn't surprise them—much—but the rock part has them stumped. They all want to know why someone didn't draw their weapon and shoot the damn lion. When you tell them that most folks in OC aren't packin' when they head for the hills, Idahoans get this blank look on their faces and ask, "Why not?" I thought I'd leave that one for you.
Gustavo Arellano's incomplete research produces faulty math on his part. Just from memory, I recall two additional priests not included on his list who were accused of abusing boys in Orange County parishes or schools. The first priest, Michael Harris, was principal of both Mater Dei and Santa Margarita high schools. He was accused of molesting several minors and the Los Angeles and Orange dioceses settled with one of Harris' alleged victims for $5.2 million, and Harris was removed from the priesthood. Father Robert Foley served at Saint John Neumann in Irvine and with another parish in Anaheim. Although he was never accused of wrongdoing in Irvine, several parishioners remember him as being very involved with boys' activities. In Anaheim, Foley was accused of forcing oral and anal sex on two young boys. The diocese assured the parents that it would take care of the situation. Foley was quickly spirited out of the US back to his native UK and the diocese called the matter closed. The parents sued and the Diocese of Orange settled out of court.
Irvine Gustavo Arellano responds:I'm sorry that my lack of clarity led Bill O'Neill to the conclusion that I was trying to account for all priests accused of molestation. I was merely pointing out that I could find more molestations among far fewer priests than the diocese is willing to acknowledge.
DEPT. OF CORRECTIONS
Downloading the film Nothing So Strange costs $3 to $5 via BitPass at www.nothingsostrange.comand is not free, as indicated in Greg Stacy's "Kill Bill,"Jan. 16.
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