Letters published May 16, 2002

The Corrigan family speaks out:

My brothers and sisters really thought the article on Judge Daniel O. Corrigan ["Bench Warmer," April 4] was quite humorous, but lacked some essential truths about the man. Tom Francis failed to mention his many accomplishments.

My father was an early proponent of computers and secretarial staff in the courtrooms. This increased the efficiency of the court. My father was one of the few judges during the 1970s and 1980s to exercise his judicial power independently, expeditiously, and fairly. My father has served this community since being elected to the Cleveland Public School Board in 1963. It was one of the most turbulent times in Cleveland history. Riots in the streets had disrupted the city, and it was not safe to send kids to school. Despite his youth, he worked with the mayor and other officials to calm the situation and get the city through the crisis. He was selected to be the president of the Cleveland Board of Education in 1969. Ten years later, as a judge, he was instrumental in getting the Cleveland Police back to work after a legal dispute.

In 32 years as a jurist, my father has not had any major appellate reversals, unlike his opponents. He has quietly and with great humility served his community as Common Pleas judge and father, with great sufferance to some of his personal endeavors. My family was devastated by my mother's stroke and subsequent colon cancer surgery and chemotherapy treatment.

Not only did you fail to mention us -- two accomplished lawyers, a nurse, a probation officer, and two undecided -- you gave the false impression that he has no friends in the Cleveland legal community. On the contrary, he continues to enjoy broad support among his peers throughout Cuyahoga County.

Daniel P. Corrigan

Exploding heads, our specialty:

A friend told me my head would explode when I read "Bench Warmer." It actually exploded twice: once, as I learned of the abuse of taxpayer money stemming from Judge Corrigan's ridiculous tenure in Cuyahoga County and a second time, as author Thomas Francis's tacky, political slant continually portrayed a thorough and methodical courtroom as a bad thing.

Jennifer Warswick

The fight for publically funded universal health care:

In his article on the campaign for universal health care ["A Faint Pulse," April 11], Martin Kuz quotes someone as saying, "Public health care is a fine idea, but when you look at the political landscape, you better have a strategy to get us there." We in the Single-Payer Action Network Ohio (SPAN) agree, and we have a strategy for getting us there.

The centerpiece for health care reform should be changing the system's roots. Advocates are today engaged in a many-sided fight for a Patients' Bill of Rights, legislation that would reduce the price of prescription drugs, expand the Children's Health Insurance Program so that more children of lower-income families would be covered, preserve Medicare and Medicaid funding, oppose veterans being forced to pay $1,500 annually in deductibles, and so on. In fact, there are literally thousands of proposals out there to reform the system under which we live today. But none of these reforms, however worthwhile, will provide what is critically needed: comprehensive health care coverage for all. Only a publicly funded universal health care system -- sometimes called a single-payer system -- will achieve that.

The 44 million uninsured and the 42 million underinsured do not have the luxury of waiting to obtain decent insurance. We have every confidence that the fight to achieve health care for all can be won by a united labor movement and its allies (women's organizations, African Americans, Hispanics, and student supporters). In every other industrialized country, proponents of publicly funded universal health care have prevailed over proponents of private insurance companies. We should not be cowed into inaction here because of fear of these companies and their deep pockets. They have the money, but we have the people, as shown by every major poll. We are stronger than they are and need only to mobilize our forces. Please call us at 216-736-4766 to get involved. Visit our website at www.spanohio.org.

Jerry Gordon
Secretary, Span Ohio
University Heights

He's no Royko, but who is?

I don't know the man personally ["What to Do About Sam?", April 25], but I didn't know Mike Royko either. I did call Mike once when I lived in Chicago and found him very blunt, with his voice as cold as ice. I did enjoy his column and was saddened when he died. Guys like him only come this way every now and then. We get spoiled when we think someone can take their place.

I hope Sam Fulwood will use the skills he has developed and not become the clone others want him to be. In the long run, he'll be judged for being Sam, not a clone.

Gerald Oglesby


In "Let God Sort 'Em Out" [May 9], Scene incorrectly identified Tracy Mora, the accuser in the Periandri case, as Kathy Mora. We regret the error.


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