Time Off for Bad Behavior
Re "The City That Pays Out" by Mick Dumke, November 27
When officers are found guilty in high-profile cases of misconduct and abuse, they more than likely get time off from their job but why don't they get fired? After all they are in the public eye and they work for the city and the people. If they can do something so blatantly wrong and are found guilty but they are just given time off from work and not fired then it is like a slap in the face to the people. As we all know Chicago is a very political city and they take care of its own...
The Writer's Burden
Re "Gay Power: Gus Van Sant's political biopic Milk is itself a political act" by J.R. Jones, November 27, on chicagoreader.com
A great and perceptive review—the reviewer gets it right. What's not mentioned is that [Sean] Penn is an intensely political man, undoubtedly one of the reasons he took the role, in addition to his admiration for Harvey Milk and the screenplay by Lance Black. It's the shoulders of the writer on which every actor stands.
Frank M. Robinson
Here's to You, Mr. Robinson
Re "Harvey Milk's Unlikely Message Man: How local sci-fi writer Frank Robinson went from The Towering Inferno to the 'hope speech' " by Albert Williams, November 27, on chicagoreader.com
Frank Robinson is among so many unsung and unknown heroes. Allan Spear, openly gay state senator in Minnesota, Steve Endean who founded HRC [Human Rights Campaign], and Daryl. Daryl was a guy who was scared to death in the early 70s to protest Anita Bryant's appearance in Minneapolis but showed up anyway. The next day, there he was on the front page of the Minneapolis Star and Tribune, in big-ass sunglasses and a hat pulled down low, but there he was. It's not as hard today, but there are still closets that are difficult to exit.
Thanks to all the people who made this film possible, and that closet door a little easier to open.
Frank Robinson was my first boss in an editorial job (Evanston, circa 1965) and my mentor in the mechanics of publishing. He's also been a selfless mentor, pro bono editor, supporter and friend to dozens of emerging writers, playwrights, illustrators, fine artists, and performers—gay and straight, male and female, young and old. He's also been my good friend for 40 years, and best man at my three weddings. He is, indeed, one of the best men I've ever known—as a professional and as a truly caring and committed human being. So sad that so much of himself had to be hidden for so long... and so many never knew what they were missing.
I would like to compliment the author of the article about Frank Robinson. As a lesbian "of a certain age" I can appreciate his life choices. Thanks to Mr. Williams for giving us a warm and insightful portrait of a man who was unable to claim his sexual identity but instead gave generously of his wisdom and talent to so many.
Cropped Out, Volume II
Re "Cropped Out: The board of the Chicago Photography Center fires founder Richard Stromberg" by Deanna Isaacs, November 27
This is the saddest situation and a travesty to a gifted and inspirational community leader. I was one of the early contributors to CPC, and it was Richard's passion for photography and philosophy for community that drew me in. He cultivated my photographic eye, supported my early efforts, and helped me grow. If he stands firm on principles, it is because of his moral commitment to both community and to ensuring that photography remains an combination of art and journalism. Richard's unbelievable energy was the source of the CPC community and the center itself. It literally could not have happened without him. Shame on you, CPC board, for your failure to deal respectfully with someone who gave so much to you.
A note from the editor:
Many comments posted after this story have been eliminated by readers who flagged them as inappropriate, triggering programmed deletion. Some of those comments were posted under the names of people who posted later comments to say their identities had been hijacked.
The Cuteness Is in You
Re "The Whole Hog Project" by Mike Sula, November 13
I am a vegetarian not because I love animals but because I hate plants...
The origin of vegetarianism is from esoteric religions that teach that "Reality" is made out of some sort of a "vibration" ...
Consuming the flesh of animals particularly reduces your "vibration" thus lowering your chance of approaching "enlightenment"... (Haha.)
The "cuteness" or "loveliness"—whatnot—of an animal is not in itself, but in you, the human observer.
Andrew Gallovich, Bucktown