What in the World Is Tom Danehy Thinking?

Please, dear God, tell me what is wrong with Tom Danehy? His most recent column (July 31) regarding African-American name choices betrays a racism which is mind-boggling to say the least, and probably more appropriate for Goober's Digest than the Tucson Weekly.

What concern is it of his what name a young black mother-to-be is considering for her child? If she wishes to give her child an "ethnic sounding" name, she has every right to do so, and bigots like Danehy should butt out. He reminisces about the good ol' days when well-behaved Negroes took nice white names like Billy, Tommy and so on. Perhaps Danehy would feel safer if all white folks did a Michael Jackson: bleach their skins, snip their noses, trim their lips and straighten out that pesky curly hair--then they wouldn't be so ... so ... so darn black.

Yeah, yeah, we've heard Tom's I'm-not-really-a-racist spiel before. But he can't write this sort of ignorant white-trash nonsense and expect that anyone is likely to think anything but, "What the fuck?"

With all the real problems facing humanity, is this silliness worth so much ink? Perhaps that ink would be better devoted to exploring the ignorance and racism, overt and subtle (both of which apply to Danehy's column, and presumably his mentality as well), still eating away at our society and betraying its nobler ideals.

Matt Honeycutt

People Use 'Black' Names to Add to Our Vanilla Landscape

I often find articles by Tom Danehy (who would be known as Tom Dane had his Irish forefathers shared his opinion on name recognition) entertaining and amusing. His July 31 commentary perpetuates the notion that selecting a "made-up" Afro-centric name creates a self-imposed magnet for racism.

Tom has benefited a great deal from his exposure to the black experience. This has provided him with an insight and awareness of the culture that few white people possess. What Tom doesn't adequately express is that most African-Americans inherited the surname that a master provided to label his slaves/property. For a person to have the freedom to name their children whatever they desire is a declaration of liberation, ethnic pride and self determination.

Tom referenced the movie Roots. We know some of our imaginative monikers are considered ghetto, even by our own standards, but they add so much flavor to the vanilla landscape of our society. As black people, we recognize that we're going to face discrimination regardless of our names, and that discrimination emanates not from our Negro-phobic names, but from our blackness. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's parents probably did not read the "University of Chicago and MIT" study. Just like we know who Juan, Josita and Carlos are, the parents of LaQueisha likely desire that as well.

Gerald W. Jeffery

The 'Weekly' Sucks Because It Runs Danehy, Hoffman

I read Tom Danehy's July 31 article several times asking myself, "Have I missed something? Is this satire? A mocking of stereotypical white male conservative ideology used to provoke thought?" No, I remembered; I am reading the Tucson Weekly, which published the opinion piece by Jonathan Hoffman claiming that the racist radio personality Jon Justice made a "cogent argument" for the removal of immigrants' rights activist Isabel Garcia (July 31). If a cogent argument is one that appeals to racism, nationalism and white supremacy, well then, yes, he has made a cogent argument.

Following this line of reasoning, Danehy also made a cogent argument. Through anecdotal stories, Danehy insinuated that black members of our community use poor English, cannot spell and are on welfare in his contention that giving children "black names" will impede success in life. It is not the name that a parent chooses for their child that contributes to their difficulties in life; it is people like Danehy and media outlets like the Tucson Weekly that further racist and stereotyped thought.

Shame on you, Tucson Weekly!

Erin Maxwell

The 'Weekly' Sucks Because It Disrespects Kromko

The title of Jimmy Boegle's "Decent Into Insanity" (Editor's Note, July 31) insinuates that John Kromko is insane. On what evidence? Well, the piece refers to the Taylor Avey-Jim Nintzel account of the July 22 debate between challenger Kromko and the incumbent Legislative District 27 Democrats ("Comeback Trail"). The offending line in that article seems to be, "(Kromko) tells the crowd that the 2006 Regional Transportation Authority election was actually rejected by voters, but a conspiracy in the Pima County Elections Division led to a flipping of the election." That was Avey and Nintzel telling, so we don't really know the exact words Kromko used. But we do know exactly what Boegle wrote: "(O)ne thing the (Pima Democratic Party's) request/lawsuit has thus far not turned up is a single shred of credible evidence that the RTA election was anything but legitimate."

I beg to differ. Bill Risner (who won $228,000 in legal fees!) was careful not make such an allegation--even though he made it perfectly clear that the reason the Pima Democratic Party (with tacit support of many Republicans) was suing was to obtain election

computer records that would enable all major political parties to search for evidence of election tampering. In fact, Risner felt obliged to pass along to Attorney General Terry Goddard what he believes to be sufficient evidence to bring a criminal case against Pima County computer operator Bryan Crane, because the earlier-released computer database for the RTA election proved that Crane had performed a series of illegal printouts and an overwrite of the RTA early-ballot tabulation. To my mind, this is much more than the "single shred of credible evidence."

David L. Griscom

The 'Weekly' Sucks Because It Likes Isabel Garcia, Disrespects Arpaio

I read some newspapers talking about Legal Defender Isabel Garcia and her "legal rights" regarding the beating and beheading of a mock display of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio ("When Idiots Attack," June 24), and Isabel's subsequent parading around with the "head." Attorneys and judges are held to a higher standard, as they represent the law. As an attorney, she cannot give an impression of impropriety. As legal defender, she is considered a decision-maker and should not be encouraging a display of mock beating, murdering and beheading anyone, much less a law-enforcement officer.

As a human being, it is disgraceful and immoral that she was encouraging children 14 years old to act violent (be it symbolic or not). "Beheading" is a disgusting trait of terrorists, and that is what she displayed as she paraded around laughing with the "head." Many people even believe she was giving a "green light" to some of her goons to do harm to Arpaio, who is carrying out the law.

Illegal aliens "chose" to make themselves and their children into criminals when they snuck into our country illegally. Those who break the law are the cause of their own problems. Remember, not one "legal" alien ever died in the desert nor was separated from their children!

Laura Leighton


In T Q&A (Aug. 7), we reported that Mica Kinder first approached former Tucson Chief of Police Richard Miranda to help with her training; actually, it was former Chief Sixto Molina of the South Tucson Police Department. We apologize for the error.
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