Support for Dupree
I am writing on a topic which has been in the news for weeks. I am more than distressed about the ongoing coverage of a problem involving an outstanding public servant and long-standing friend, the Honorable Mike Dupree, Constable Pct 5.
As I read all the articles, it appears he had some sort of relationship with a young man who did not have any respect for the motor vehicle code (no driving license, no insurance), and I believe the young man was alleged to have misappropriated a peace officer’s weapon, and was being deported. This strikes me as a non-event.
At one time, I believe, Mike Dupree was the only county officer representing the gay community, and since Mike is a Democrat, I am appalled at Stonewall Democrats piling on him with criticism and abuse. I take issue with Shannon Bailey’s assertion that Mike “needs” to explain himself, and as to Jesus Chairez’ assertion that Mike should be recalled, it shows Chairez is totally unfamiliar with the way the government works.
As for me, I haven’t been in touch with Mike Dupree, because its difficult to call someone and say, “Hey, bro, sorry to hear you got your tail in a crack.” But on the other hand, I feel certain that Mike Dupree knows I support him unconditionally, and he would call on me if he needed me.
As to Stonewall Democrats, they should find a worthwhile project, such as getting our highly-qualified sheriff, Lupe Valdez, re-elected.
Attacking an action, not a person
I wanted to thank you for your continuing coverage of Perry Homes. I think people have every right to know where their money is going. Robert J. Perry is an ultra conservative who will sink to any low to progress his agenda, whether that is anti-gay legislation, school vouchers or anti-choice measures
In response to Sally O’Connor’s letter of defense for Kathy Hewitt: I have great respect for her loyalty to her friend and admire her taking the time to voice that loyalty. However, We have every right to hold Kathy Hewitt accountable for her words.
Since Hewitt is a huge voice in and leader of the community, it is more relevant than ever for us to challenge her lack of principle in the area of proudly selling Perry Homes to the community. If we can not depend on our leaders, then who are we to look to?
Since Hewitt now knows of Perry Homes’ connection to Robert Perry’s anti-equality stance, she has to decide what to do with that information. It is a rationalization to defend selling his homes. It literally counters all the hard work she does for the community. This is not a attack on her as a person, but on the ideas that she will now help to fester and create real destruction in our community.
Hewitt, like all of us, has to be accountable for the decisions she makes. If she wants to sell Perry Homes, that is fine. But she should be honest; it is not a good thing, and every dollar she make from those sales and every dollar she make for Robert J. Perry goes to hurt our community.
She should take responsiblity for her actions. It is not some abstract, separate thing. Just like a vote connects an individual to the actions of a political candidate or party, her deeds and money connect her to the actions of the business she supports.
It is not a person we attack. It is the reality of what our choices do, the ideas they promote or the people they hurt.
I am not attacking Kathy Hewitt. But I am attacking her lack of accountability for her actions. Do what you will, but please be honest about what that means.
Rating some readers’ responses
I am responding to all three of the letters regarding Perry Homes that were in last week’s Dallas Voice.
I wholeheartedly agree with Alan Pierce’s letter concerning homebuilder Robert Perry. Anyone who reads the news knows his powerful connection to Gov. Rick Perry and the right wing agenda. This is not news, but it shows the ambivalent ignorance of the Dallas LGBT community.
Sally O’Connor’s letter in support of realtor Kathy Hewitt gave her “attackers” more fuel for the fire. The fact that Hewitt is active in organizations like the Human Rights Campaign, which annually publishes a buyers guide for the LGBT community listing businesses to support and avoid, glaringly shows that she should know better as a lesbian businesswoman than to promote Perry Homes. It just shows that LGBT people are like anyone else when it comes to caving in to the almighty dollar.
Michael Amonett’s letter pointing out the shoddy construction of Perry Homes and the recent article in the Dallas Morning News was right on target. I thought it was rather rich that the Morning News published such a negative article on Perry Homes right after the Dallas Voice did. That was just perfect.
An ethical dilemma
I appreciated your article on Robert Perry’s significant financial contributions to causes trying to deny homosexuals the same rights as heterosexuals. It was also interesting to learn some real estate agents’ point of view and your readers feelings about the agents’ comments.
I, too, am a gay real estate agent. A lot of my business is in Dallas’s in-town neighborhoods, so I see Perry Homes product daily. And I’ve been aware of Robert Perry’s financial contributions for quite a while.
I don’t like what he’s doing, and this creates a conflict for me. I would like to not support his efforts financially in this regard. However, as a buyer’s agent, I have a fiduciary responsibility to my clients that puts their interests above mine. It’s my legal and ethical responsibility to make sure my clients know about Perry Homes if those homes are a logical alternative for them.
Since Robert Perry’s political contributions are so widely known, it may be Perry Homes’ responsibility to disclose that to their prospective buyers. If the buyer’s agent knows about it, it may be their responsibility, as well.
I have informed my clients, of both sexual orientations, about Robert Perry’s political contributions. I learned that no one I know likes his actions, and yet, none said it would keep them from buying a Perry product.
The positive part is that the buyer’s agent is paid by Perry, so Mr. Perry’s money is probably helping others counter his actions. At least, I hope so.
No armchair activist here
Two weeks ago, I was one of several people who wrote letters to Dallas Voice chastising Kathy Hewitt’s willingness to make a buck selling Perry Homes at the expense of gay rights. Last week, a friend of hers wrote a letter defending Hewitt as a champion of gay and lesbian rights, arguing that it is easy to “sit at home and draft a letter condemning one of our community’s most devout activists.”
I can’t speak for Ms. Hewitt’s other critics, but as a very out gay professor at SMU who was targeted by a hate crime, who has written several columns calling Republicans to task for their homophobia, whose office was targeted by vandalism, who was called a “faggot” the suggestion that I “sit at home and draft a letter condemning” anyone is, frankly, bull.
Hewitt and her friends can justify her behavior in whatever way that allows them to sleep at night, but supporting a known homophobe by day and pretending to be a gay-rights activist by night, from where I sit, is suspicious at best.
Months after Hitler rose to power in 1933, several Orthodox rabbis in Berlin wrote to him pledging their loyalty to Germany, arguing that they shared the Nazis’ moral values. Do I need to remind Hewitt and her supporters how that ended?
Thanks for the article
Thanks a million for the article on my meetings with representatives of Perry Homes. I think David Webb did a great job with it. More people like him are what we need to get our messages across. Thanks again. The coverage is helping with our cause because Perry Homes people have read every letter and article.
Mike Lo Vuolo
Why are we surprised?
Just a note to let you know how much I value the Dallas Voice for educating our community. I have to be amused that some members of our community spend so much time denigrating and deriding Republicans that they don’t even know their “enemy.”
I am referring, of course, to the sudden revelation that Bob Perry’s politics are to the right of Attila the Hun, and that he gave lots of money to defeat Proposition 2. Quelle surprise!
I suppose that no one but me knows that Bob Perry is a big supporter of Rick Perry, and that, coupled with Dr. James Leininger’s hand up his butt, makes Rick Perry nothing but a puppet of the right wing.
Next thing, you’ll tell me that you didn’t know that Promised Land Dairy’s organic and upwardly mobile milk profiteth the right wing. All you have to do is Google, and see their HQ is 8144 Datapoint Drive, same as Jim Leininger.
I’d really like to see more emphasis on our community supporting quality education goals, instead of letting a multi-millionaire buy his way through the legislature. But hey, that isn’t as much fun as parading and protesting. Isn’t there a stereotype somewhere that gay people are supposed to be really, really organized?
P D Sterling
Democrats not really our friends
The English Labour Party has a long history of combative efforts on behalf of working people and others, even if the “New Labour” misleadership of Tony Blair, whose politics are abjectly liberal, has caused the LP to misstep on issues like Iraq.
While crafting a bill to insure the civil rights of gays and lesbians, the Labour Party came under heavy pressure from both Anglo and Roman Catholics and their fellow purveyors of superstition. They wanted to legitimize their bigotry, discrimination and hatemongering against us by being exempted from the new legislation.
However, on Monday, Jan. 29, Tony Blair’s government denied the exemption. Contrast that with the actions of the Democratic Party in this country, led by card-carrying liberals who lack any semblance of a militant legacy, courage or backbone.
Last week a leading Senate Democrat, Sen. Max Baucus, blocked an amendment to the minimum wage bill that would have provided tax deductions for employer-paid health benefits for domestic partners because it would “distress” Republicans.
The lesson here is that even the worst representative of a Labor Party is better by far than any representative of the Democratic Party. The Democrats will promise anything to get our votes, but this is the latest example of what we’ll get in return. We should abandon the Democrats because they’re our political enemies just as much as the Republicans, and give our time, money and support to the U.S Labor Party.
Bill Perdue, RainbowRed Organization
We welcome letters from readers. Shorter letters are more likely to be printed, as are those that address only a single topic. On some weeks we receive more letters than we can print. In that case, we print a representative sample. Letters are subject to editing for length and clarity, but we attempt to maintain the writer’s substance and tone. Include your home address and a daytime phone number for verification. Send letters to the senior editor, preferably by e-mail (email@example.com). Letters also may be faxed (214-969-7271) or mailed (Dallas Voice, 4145 Travis St., Third Floor, Dallas, TX 72504).
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition February 2, 2007