Letters From the Issue of Thursday, February 1, 2007

Highway to Heil

Dangerous liaisons: What the hell is going on in this county? Are we living in Nazi Germany ("Boob's Tube," Paul Rubin, and "Doubting Thomas," Sarah Fenske, both January 25)?

Sheriff Joe Arpaio, his chief deputy David Hendershott, and County Attorney Andrew Thomas are three people who are really dangerous, and anybody in their right mind should be really afraid of them.
Jim Cozzolino, Peoria

That's one voter down, a million or so to go: Great read on "Boob's Tube," the Saban vs. Arpaio case, and what really happened behind the scenes. I'm embarrassed to say that I voted for Joe two times. Never again.
Peggy Norris, Glendale

Taking out the trash: In my opinion, the prosecutors in the case detailed in "Doubting Thomas" have failed to do their jobs properly. Their jobs are to actually find the truth, not destroy a person's reputation for [the county attorney's] own gain. Anyone who sees it differently, in my opinion, is an anti-constitutional piece of garbage.
Ricky Gene Thompson, Cottonwood

For All Mankind

A plague upon U.: We were angered and saddened to read "A Cancer on ASU" (Megan Irwin, January 18). My Clayton is alive today because of Dr. Bob Pettit's research.

After receiving standard-of-care therapies for his anaplastic thyroid cancer, Clayton participated in a Phase I combretastatin clinical trial. Having visited ASU's Cancer Research Institute, sharing ice cream with and spending a bit of time with Dr. Pettit, we know his passion is to find cancer cures.

There are two sides to every story, but we're sure this driving passion to research and have the funding/facilities to do it well is misunderstood by businessman Michael Crow, ASU's president, and others at Arizona State University. Sadder than Dr. Pettit's plight is that of generations of cancer patients to come.
Rose Twigg, Westlake, Ohio

Bad medicine: Megan Irwin truly deserves the title (and accolade) of journalist. The world is full of reporters, but true journalists are a rare and vanishing breed.

Thank you for "A Cancer on ASU." Beautifully done. It makes my heart sink even further, however, knowing that many cancers have already been cured, but the cures have been subverted or crushed, like Bob Pettit's research. Pharmaceutical greed is more often than not behind this, but your report brings forth a truly heinous reason for it: a pissing contest between grown men, and cancer victims become victimized yet again.

Biodesign Institute director George Poste's gigantic ego surely doesn't allow for shame, I am sure. However, the man's face should appear on a wanted poster in every cancer clinic in the world; he is the nemesis of all that is held holy and hopeful in those places.

As for ASU President Michael Crow, what a lily-livered pansy he is, dusting this annoyance off his shoulders so easily. Obviously, the man cannot even spell integrity.

Where are the true leaders of this world? They are not on podiums receiving accolades from their government and corporations. They are in shit-hole labs such as Bob Pettit has been relegated to.

So what if Pettit was difficult to get along with? So what if he is a bit arrogant and overbearing? The man has dedicated his life to a dream that would benefit all mankind. That kind of dedication and integrity deserve some slack in the personality department sometimes.

God bless him, but mostly, God bless you for telling his story.
Bonnie Gallimore, Tucson

Anti mater: Thank you for your article re: the demise of my alma mater. I was so ashamed to be a Sun Devil alumnus after reading it. This is the example the administration is setting for students — treat those who you don't agree with heavy-handedly and, like a child, take away the things that matter to them.

It reminds me very much of our national leadership. I wish this were news to me, but I have been speaking lately to longtime tenured profs at ASU and have heard basically the same thing: Tenure means nothing; bring money (grants, publishing) in within two years or you're out. And, by the way, we're cutting your department in half, so make do.

I hope to see more articles like this written. I've always been a firm believer that if New Times doesn't report it, the people will never know about it. Keep up the good work!
Linda Nagy, Mesa

Wake-up call: Regarding the Cancer Research Institute, I wanted to thank you for putting this political mess out to the public. I have read your article only once, but will do so several more times because of the bulk of information in it. I was appalled; that was my first reaction. And even after sleeping on it, I think I still am.
Linsey Maeglin, Scottsdale

Patently untrue: I am writing regarding a sentence in the article "A Cancer on ASU." The sentence reads: "It is true that he's personally grossed millions of dollars over the course of his career as a result of patents."

It is a fact that Dr. Bob Pettit profited over the course of his career as a result of his many patents. However, he always lived on his professor's salary, and all the money he earned was paid to the Cancer Research Institute for laboratory supplies, researchers' salaries, and payments on the CRI's mortgage.

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