Damning Diles

Letters published May 16, 2007

Case Western Reserve University bullying shaken baby minority set-asides Spider-Man 3 Akron Children’s Hospital serial killers
Athletic director pink-slips a role model: I am a parent who knows Coach Harris from a summer camp he and some staff put together every year for hundreds of children, for which he never asked any money. Everyone complains about troubled youth. Here is a guy running a summer camp -- a positive experience for young kids -- and Mr. Diles would like to snuff out his job. Something is wrong with that picture. Both Case and our youth are losing all the way around.

Somebody stop the madness.

Leona Stewart

A Case of heartlessness: Thank you for revealing how Dave Diles' athletic department operates. I was a freshman soccer player this season, but due to a minor heart disability, wasn't allowed to participate right away. Eventually, after massive amounts of stalling on Diles' part as well as other members of the staff, I was eventually cleared to play, though I had to meet some absurd requirements that even my cardiologist felt were unnecessary.

If you are doing any more stories on the way the Case athletic department treats people, I will be glad to contribute.

Eric Seck
Ferndale, Wash.

White Lies
Blind to the color of their privilege?
In regard to the letter [May 2] that took an anti-affirmative-action stance and said that hard work is considered "acting white" by the black community: I must say I have never heard an actual black person say that -- only white conservative talk-radio hate shows, because they feel ashamed and guilty that it's a product of their own culture.

They pretend it's a pillar of black culture to distract attention from their own setbacks. For those of us who attended mostly white schools, we know that hard work is hardly instilled in white families. If a white kid is smart, he is ostracized by his peers and bullied. And you can forget about Tyler the computer geek finding a date to prom, because having intelligence is somehow considered being less of a man.

As horrible as this country is to black people, whites should feel all the luckier that the only thing they are asking for is a chump-change settlement like affirmative action, when they should be ransacking the entire U.S. Treasury. While it may be true that blacks are often their own worst enemy crime-wise, white-on-white crime is sky-high as well, so the pot shouldn't be calling the kettle black.

Whether it be slavery from the past or embezzlement and fraud from the present, the laziness and scheming attitude of white culture has hurt us all.

Thanks to white unions bullying corporations into paying them exorbitant wages and demanding eight hours' pay for four hours' labor, corporations are escaping overseas to hire foreigners who know the value of a dollar and are actually willing to work for it. It is hysterical that some white males think they can trick people into thinking that they didn't get their jobs just because they are white. If we cherry-picked out all the white guys who got their jobs just because they are white, we would lose half the undeserving American workforce.

Michelle Hamilton

Serially Successful
America's Most Wanted will be calling next:
Very enlightening story ["The Babysitter Killer," May 2]. I am impressed. Very good work.

There is info in your story I have never read before, and I have been following this case closely for years. I was a Birmingham resident for 30-plus years. Since you did such a good job, here's something for you to look at also: Six months after Tim was abducted, a friend of mine was also killed in Birmingham, and that case has never been solved. Maybe you can dig up a connection, although my friend was an adult. His name was John McKinney.

I hope Theodore starts to spill the beans soon, before someone kills him.

Cary Wilkie
Long Grove, Iowa

Spidey Bugs Us
Clevelanders develop arachnophobia over this bomb:
Aside from his comparison to Fantastic Four (actually a very entertaining film), Robert Wilonsky's review of Spider-Man 3 is dead on [Film, May 2].

As one of the extras who worked on it, I had high hopes for the film. Unfortunately, not only did it wind up being a bloated, whiny, overlong, clumsily written and predictable mess (more like Superman Returns), it gave Cleveland precious few seconds of screen time in a clumsily edited sequence.

For all the time and money spent here, our city deserves better than the cutting-room floor. As the saying that we're all too familiar with goes, maybe next year.

Donn Nottage

High-risk Surgery
Akron Children's should excise problem doc:
Thank you for a well-written and important story about Akron Children's Hospital ["Guilty Until Proven Innocent," April 18]. I hope the hospital will look into Dr. Steiner's practices with outside investigators. If the hospital tries to hunker down and ignore the appearance of a problematic doctor, it will darken its reputation needlessly.

Our daughter was rushed to the hospital a handful of times over the years, and they saved her life several times. The E.R. staff was magnificent, as were the surgeons and floor staff. I would never send a child anywhere else before choosing Akron Children's. But if I were the parent of a very young child, I might hesitate due to a bad gatekeeper like Dr. Steiner. What a great loss to the community if people were to avoid the hospital because of him.

Gerald Seidel
Cleveland Heights

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