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Journalism from the Recliner

In the past I have admired Tara Servatius' investigative articles. She has scooped the Charlotte Observer on more than one occasion. But this time (Citizen Servatius: "A World-Class Jesus," Nov. 21) she mailed it in.

She writes with disdain of the "right people" and the "country club" crowd, of the "moneyed, old-Charlotte blue bloods in attendance," of "Chamber hangers-on, and the lawyers that serve them" that attend Myers Park Baptist Church. I had no idea she was such a snob! Golly, Tara, the "beautiful people" are people, too.

Myers Park Baptist Church has the most interesting mix of people on a Sunday morning you will find anywhere. If you had come to our church to do your research instead of doing it in front of the TV from your recliner, you would have seen and heard in the packed meeting hall before church, one person after another get up and relate, often in tears, what a powerful moment this was in their spiritual lives -- being accepted and supported by our church family after being rejected for so many years by so many others.

Instead of slinking off in the middle of the night as you and the N.C. Baptist Convention would have us do, we decided to stand up and speak truth to power on behalf of our gay and lesbian friends. They are every bit as deserving of the redemptive love of Jesus as you and the N.C. Baptist Convention are.

In lobbing sneering, superior, cynical put-downs in our direction, you showed that you are part of the problem we have in this country: Instead of talking about the values we share in common, politicians and media types such as you seek to divide us. I would guess more folks at our church choose as our guiding principles the Sermon on the Mount more than we do the Ten Commandments. You know, like where it says, "Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." See you there?

-- Robert Dulin, Charlotte

The Chip on Whose Shoulder?

Nsengu Burton's harebrained polemic, "When White Folks Mess Up" (The N Word, Dec. 5) illustrates just how big a chip on the shoulder problem some people of color have. Why is it politically acceptable for the liberal media to uncritically publish sophomoric black rants against alleged racism? A similar piece with the races reversed would likely not see the light of day. In these parts, the "double standard" of Burton's imaginary "elite" media is practiced just as often in favor of poor black folks as for "elite" whites. Witness what happened to the Duke defendants: a white DA running for reelection in a black district, supported by an hysterical "elite" media hyperventilating about an alleged racist, sexist crime, tried and convicted innocent "white folk" athletes without a trial. Attorney Nifong, a "white folk" who messed up, lost his law license and is still feeling the effect of his misdeeds. Yet, the cause of this whole profoundly misogynistic incident, a lying, drug-addled "exotic" dancer, a "black folk" who messed up, has never received any punishment.

-- Jeff Wikle, Waxhaw

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