To the editor: The Weekly‘s Feb. 25 cover story, “Captive Care,” by seasoned journalist Eric Griffey, is another example of his expertise in exposés. His “third world” story about conditions at the jail unit of John Peter Smith hospital should make people puke. It appeared at an appropriate time, coinciding with Robert Earley’s succession as the new CEO of the public hospital network. Earley deserves this prestigious post, and his leadership will do the county and JPS Network proud. Predecessor David Cecero was a most ineffective, greedy CEO, concerned only with the bottom line. He ran it like a business – for profit only.

The conditions described in Griffey’s story were not confined to prisoners – they affected general-admission and trauma-unit patients, too. Cecero made it his obsession to take in only patients with insurance, and JPS charged more than regular hospitals did for what they deemed “care.” And to think Cecero was rewarded with his “golden parachute.” He should have been pilloried and charged with criminal negligence.

JPS is much better off with its new CEO. Let’s give Mr. Earley a chance to reach his objectives and to make JPS a five-star facility once again.


Credit is due to Mr. Griffey for his investigative footwork and instincts, which must have shifted into high gear to bring this kind of informed journalism to the public. Great job!

Rick Orton

Fort Worth

Origin-al Sin

To the editor: The Static column in the Feb. 11 edition of Fort Worth Weekly (“Salvation through Science”) repeats a common error. The original title Charles Darwin gave to what he called his “essay” of 1895 was On the Origin of Species. Anti-evolutionists often insert an extra article to make it “the Species,” an egocentric fantasy referring to man. Static does the same.

Darwin’s concern in the publication was “all species” and the natural processes through which they evolved. The book scarcely mentions man. A book that Darwin published in 1871, The Descent of Man, is filled with ambiguities, but today most of them have been resolved by fossil evidence and other scientific methods.

Robert Platt

Fort Worth

Sex and War

To the editor: Freelance writer E. R. Bills really knows how to inject humor along with hard facts. His “Foreign Phallacy” article (Second Thought, March 4, 2009) is another of his offerings that make us scratch our heads at the shenanigans that our government and military would like to pass off as a partial solution to the war on terror.

Bills is right about TV and other media outlets, where everything is centered around voyeurism, porn, and of course that little blue pill.

We can’t protect our children from being virtually assaulted with sex commercials, but there ought to be a time set for that kind of advertising. Unfortunately, only the government can mandate that. But with their attitude of “Viva Viagra,” it’ll be a cold day in hell when any such action is taken. So, it’s teach your children early, with a fast course in our era of sex, sex, and more sex.

Amber Rogers

Fort Worth

Foreign Competition

To the editor: Peter Gorman’s Metropolis story (“Cool Competition,” March 11, 2009) reminds us what capitalism and competition is all about. Foreign workers don’t demand union-scale wages, and their companies aren’t always in avarice mode. This keeps the cost of doing business down and benefits the consumer.

This liquid natural gas competition was to be expected once these LNG carriers were allowed to dock at the newly minted port facility at Sabine Pass. Soon the foreign companies will have the monopoly in the gas market. As they say, competition is good for business, but only if you’re in the lead. So much for capitalism on the other side of the ocean. It’s dog eat dog and survival of the fittest.

Dee Taylor

Fort Worth

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