Rap is only the beginning: As dreadful a story as "Innocence Lost" [April 14] is, it is a way of life for my entire race. Too many black males are victims of the same system every day. It's not news. It's accepted, with the assumption that the innocent will filter out, unchanged, back into mainstream life. Not!
In fact, that mind-set is comforting to many of the "good" citizens of Northeast Ohio, written off as "officers just doing their jobs." How would this mother feel, to have people say that her son had to have done something? Don't be surprised when he starts to identify with rap and other cultures under oppression.
No morals to this story: It's just so great to see Kent State give a free ride to a man who can't live up to any moral standards ["Fourth Down," April 7]. Abram Elam has children with women he doesn't see fit to marry (does he pay child support?), and he rapes other women who he feels have easy reputations. And to think my husband and I have struggled for the past two years, raising two kids to get a degree from such a university. Too bad neither of us could catch a football.
Handling of issues deserves a hand: I was curious to see how Scene would handle this sensitive issue of the star athlete and his alleged victim. When I finished the article, not only did I learn a lot about the issues, but my mind was reopened. Kudos to Rebecca Meiser for such a balanced and well-written presentation on a potentially volatile and divisive topic.
Talk about your misplaced sympathy: Obviously Rebecca Meiser does not know anything about Abram Elam or his gang-rape case. I am appalled that she thinks he's had such an adverse and tragic life. Has she thought of what the victim has endured?
Just because those four thugs weren't found guilty doesn't mean that they're innocent. It just means that the prosecutor did a horrible job. If someone close to Miss Meiser ever personally faces this issue (I hope to God that never happens), I believe she might see things differently.
This girl will suffer for the rest of her life, just as my daughter is suffering the aftermath of rape at the hands of a Notre Dame athlete. Meiser is an absolutely irresponsible journalist.
West Mifflin, PA
Odds on coercion are four to one: What an outrageously irresponsible piece of journalism this is. Lindsay Charles had "a reputation" at Notre Dame? According to whom? Her accused assailants? She refused to be interviewed for this article, but Rebecca Meiser seems to have a great deal of personal information about her. I can't believe a woman wrote this disgusting piece of biased filth.
While there are definitely some aspects of Lindsay's behavior that I find perplexing, I had to consider the logic of a person as small as Lindsay in the company of four men as large as Elam, Dykes, Smith, and Crawford. Meiser went to a lot of trouble to describe Elam's impressive physique and stature. Logic does not suggest that a woman this diminutive would engage in consensual group sex with four men as enormous as her attackers unless she were mentally ill, unusually deviant, or both. The danger would be so obvious to a rational person, I don't see how in the world she could have consented. Also, there is a reasonable degree of evidence available that supports Lindsay Charles's allegation of rape. Thank you very much for reporting none of it.
Keys to the Kingdom
U.K. is singing their song: I just wanted to drop you guys a line after reading on clevescene.com about the Black Keys ["Taking Their Shots," March 24]. I saw them in Leeds, England, earlier this year, and I thought they were amazing. Just wanted to let Cleveland know that their music is being passed around out here, and the word is spreading. I hope to see them at a festival in the U.K. this year. Top drawer!
Wakefield, West Yorkshire, U.K.
Hell and a consumer boycott: In response to "Nipple-Free Zone" [April 7]: It is absurd that the contractor who was hired to develop film stands as judge, jury, and snitch with a subjective standard. Wal-Mart, Walgreens, Don Wildmon, and all others who want to stick their noses into my private photos can take a flying leap into the bottomless pits of their eternally damned hell. And they won't get my money either.
Let the word go forth: Thank you, Aina Hunter, for the article "Nipple-Free Zone." I wonder why other media haven't picked up on it. It needs to be heard all over the nation.
Bossier City, LA
Screwed at CSU
Dollars and sense of defending the little guy: Pete Kotz's "Econ 101" column was tremendous [April 21]. To say that he wove words and ideas together in a most ingenious fashion would be an understatement. His well-written observations concerning the travesty at Cleveland State University capture logic and common sense.
Thanks for being a good writer and commentator on Cleveland.
Noel Salwan, Cleveland State alum