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Letters to the Editors 

Bye Bye, Shinn Laden

To The Editors:

In Susan Shackelford's series of proposals to keep the Hornets and Sting in town ("Keeping The Hive Alive," November 28), she first suggests that Osama Shinn Laden make a convincing public commitment to keeping the teams in town. Is she suggesting that such a commitment didn't exist before the referendum vote? If it did, then reestablishing such a commitment now wouldn't seem to have much effect on public opinion. If the commitment to stay didn't exist before the vote, then what would have happened if it had passed? Secondly, she urges city council to "do something." Heaven forbid city council actually adhere to the majority vote.

Shackelford then claims that the voters did want a new coliseum but were really voting no for all those other projects on the referendum. Multiple local media polls, both before and after the vote, clearly showed the exact opposite to be true!

If this wasn't enough she has a third suggestion: We're supposed to forgive Hornets' ownership for their unscrupulous deeds because now the team is "competitive." I'm supposed to forgive Shinn Laden for essentially threatening and manipulating my community because he's "put together a good coaching staff"?!

Susan, the reason we don't want Shinn Laden and his network around is not because of the team's level of play (if that were the case, the NFL would have been kicked out of town five years ago). It's because Shinn Laden is so blatantly arrogant, manipulative, and self-centered, we know his concerns are not at all for the community but for his own bank accounts.

It's obvious that the Hornets' ownership has decided to move on, which seems to make perfect business sense and should be respected. What should not be respected are the techniques they use to get what they want and their continuous disguised attempts via columnists to get them more leverage at the Louisville bargaining table.

Let it go. Oh, and City Council: Bring back the referendum without the arena, then we'll vote yes for Charlotte's future.

Brice Payne

CharlotteArena In The Real World

To The Editors:

I was amazed to read the letter written by Charles Held of CO$T -- Charlottean Over-$tretching the Truth (CL, December 5) in response to Susan Shackleford's "Keeping The Hive Alive." He professes to be able to correct many things, including stating that the citizens of our city have already decided the arena issue on June 5; if I remember correctly, we voted on whether or not to bundle several important initiatives, not simply whether or not to build a new arena. He states that the CIAA chose Raleigh over Charlotte because of Raleigh's centralized location within the Conference, not because of our arena; somehow, I don't remember him being a part of the concerted effort put forth by a number of our citizens to attract the tournaments. We certainly heard loud and clear that it was primarily the lack of suites and luxury seating in the Coliseum that made the difference. He states that sports teams and arenas don't generate economic benefits, and that they don't contribute to a city's status; anyone who feels that way and uses the examples he used is hopelessly lost in his own world, surely not in the real world.

We do have the Men's ACC tournament in 2002 and 2008. We would have received better treatment, without a doubt, if we had an uptown arena during the years under consideration when the ACC made their most recent decision. Facts obviously are in the eye of the beholder as far as Mr. CO$T is concerned.

Jeff Beaver

Executive Director

Charlotte Regional Sports Commission

You Call This Reason?

To The Editors:

Lucy Perkins is great!! She doesn't seem intimidated by the powerful Christian fundamentalist point of view in this area. Most religious people puzzle me, they see the ridiculous and superstitious nature of the other guy's religion but remain blind to their own. Children believe in Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and other childhood fantasies. Adults should know better. We live in what we call the "Age of Reason," but in reality we still live in fear of our old tribal God images. My God spills more blood than your God...very sad!!

Bill Reaves


Thanks, Hal

To The Editors:

I would like to commend Hal Crowther for the cover story "The Sidewalks of New York" (CL, December 5). As a native New Yorker, this article really touched home for me. I could only imagine what the people in New York are feeling. His article made it more real for me. Thanks.

Pat Murphy


Legal System At Risk

To The Editors:

When I read "Unprotected" by Tara Servatius (CL, November 14), I was overwhelmed with emotions that ran the gamut of shock, anger, disbelief, sorrow and concern. This concern is for our current legal system. It's obvious our present system of justice is in crisis when jurors refuse to convict even in the face of overwhelming evidence. Obviously, this jury's intent was not an unbiased search for truth and justice, but an opportunity to substitute personal biases for a just verdict.

There was more on trial here than the fate of Donnie Rodgers. The fate of our legal system is also in question. In this country, citizens are to be governed by laws, not individual prejudices. By refusing to convict lawbreakers, jurors are undermining the courts' function and negating our legal system. This lack of respect for the law should concern all citizens.

Name withheld by request

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