Hypocrisy in Collin County?
Who’s a bigger hypocrite — the Collin County GOP or Plano City Council candidate Justin Nichols?

The Texas GOP Platform from 2006 rails against sodomy (five references) and homosexuality (13 references), and it was obvious to anyone with any "gaydar" at all back in 2006 that Justin was, in the words of Florence King’s book "Southern Ladies and Gentlemen," "a little funny." Nichols received the Dixie Clem award at the Collin County GOP Lincoln Day Dinner, but when he "comes out" (as if it were some really big revelation) then of course he’s now a child molester and they’re trying to fire him from his job with Collin County Teen Court.

So I guess the Collin County GOP are a bunch of hypocrites.

But what of Justin Nichols himself?

He was a campaign director for incumbent Congressman Sam Johnson, whom I opposed during the 2006 Republican Primary. Johnson voted against expanding hate crimes to cover gays (Sept. 28, 2004, HR 4200, Roll Call 473), which I made very clear in three full-page ads in the Dallas Observer and the Dallas Voice, not to mention ads in the Plano Star Courier, and even in my slide show during the Lincoln Day Dinner where Justin received the Dixie Clem Award. In the 2008 Republican Primary, Wayne Avellanet ran against Sam Johnson and agreed with me on this point concerning hate crimes, but Justin Nichols still cuddles up to Sam Johnson on Nichols’ own Web site.

So much for Matthew Shepard, the Wyoming gay guy beaten to death for being not butch enough. It looks like the power of incumbency dominates principle with Nichols. So I guess he’s a hypocrite, too.

The typical tacky Texas gay-versus-straight hypocrisy of it all sort of reminds me of the movie "Sordid Lives" or the stage series about Tuna, Texas.

As my Alabama momma would have said, "It’s uglier than homemade sin." If you’ve ever seen "Sordid Lives" and have ever met Nichols and Collin County GOP legend Dixie Clem, you’ll be able to figure out which characters they resemble, though perhaps Dixie is more like a dowager from Tuna, Texas. Oh well, God bless Texas, but as in, "Bless his heart!"

Robert Edward Johnson

On Voting in November
It is perplexing to hear that even one Democrat would not vote or would vote for John McCain if their favorite Democratic candidate is not nominated. To my way of thinking, this is personal political suicide.

I cannot conceive of any valid reason for such a decision. It is beyond the pale, as they say.

I am an ardent Obama supporter, but come on folks! If my man does not get the nomination, I will support Hillary Clinton with all the enthusiasm that a man can possibly muster. It is too important to get the White House back for the people.

This is not the election year to let petty personal differences motivate one to not vote or to vote for the "war president" John McCain.

To my way of thinking, anyone who chooses to vote for McCain because their candidate did not get the nomination is doing so with purely selfish intention or because of some resentment over something that happened during the campaign. And those are not good enough reasons in this election, regardless of what feelings may have been hurt during the campaign or what small deficiency one sees in one candidate over the other.

It is not enough, in this election year, to be sacrosanct about one issue to the detriment of our future and the future of our county. This election is that important.

And any Democrat who chooses not to vote is choosing to vote for McCain.

We have two of the most qualified and competent Democratic leaders in our lifetimes running for president of the United States, and we need to support whoever gets the nomination. So vote in November for the Democratic Party nominee for President.

Make that commitment and stick to it, Democrats.

Don Dureau

Dallas has better actors
My partner and I take friends to the theater weekly — sometimes two or three times a week. We have attended most theaters in Dallas. We don’t know many members of the acting community personally, but we know their work onstage.

We were very disappointed at your pick for best local actor this year (a tie for Coy Covington and Paul J. Williams in the Readers Voice Awards, March 21). We certainly enjoy Mr. Covington’s work, and we have only seen Mr. Williams’ work at fundraisers. I don’t think we have ever seen him in a full-length play or musical. I suspect that these two performers received this aware because they are well-known in our community, but are they just "one-trick ponies?"

Last year, we saw work from several actors that were far superior, in our opinion, to your choice for "best." A few of these include Bradley Campbell, Gregory Lush, Bob Hess, Joe Nemmers, Paul Taylor and T.A. Taylor. We saw all of these actors in more than one production, and their work was incredible. I don’t know if these actors are gay, which seems to matter to your publication, but they are truly skilled actors.

We agree with your choice for best actress (Liz Mikel), although we did see incredible work from many actresses that performed in more than one production last season. The same goes for directors.

We don’t know (best local stage director winner) Tina Parker, but we loved her curtain speeches and her acting and directing. The same goes for the directing talents of Jac Alder, Doug Miller, all for the ladies at Echo Theatre, Terry Martin and Terry Dobson.

We are not saying that we don’t like the talents of Mr. Covington or Mr. Williams. They are good at what they do, and they make us laugh. We just think there are other men that deserve the title of best actor for their body of work last season.

Peggy Thomas and Deborah Haynes

Editor’s note: All of the honorees named above in the Readers Voice Awards were voted on by readers of Dallas Voice, not selected by the editorial staff. Online voting was open for the month of January and those with the most votes logged during that time were judged "best." Knowing the sexual orientation of an honoree is not a prerequisite to win an award; while Covington and Williams are gay, neither Parker nor Mikel is.

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 (editor@dallasvoice.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 April 11, 2008.

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