SHOOT TO KILL
Gun nuts feel manly — when they're packin' heat: There was no reason for Bill Russell to shoot this poor, crazy dude. If he were a real man, he would have taken care of it without the use of [violence] ("Deadly Force," July 7; "Gun in Hand," June 23, both by Stephen Lemons).
Of course, all the dickless gun lovers in Arizona will come to Russell's defense, and these include many police officers (that is, don't hold your breath until there's an arrest).
New Times feedback
Gun nuts, why is it that all you honkies need your little guns? Is it that you are just a bunch of pussies who are afraid of your own shadows?
John Raymond, Phoenix
Nathan wouldn't shoot anybody to save Lemons: Anyone ever notice that the only people Stephen Lemons ever defends are pieces of shit?
Take, for example, this convicted felon/squatter. Stephen manages to make this trespassing, violent piece of shit who attacks a law-abiding property owner [with an aluminum stick] the victim and turns the man who is exercising his right to protect himself into the bad guy [by shooting the vagrant with a gun].
What kind of bizarro twisted world do you live in, Stephen? God, I hope you get put in a fucked-up situation where you need a gun owner like me to come along and help you. I wouldn't waste a bullet to save your fat ass.
Nathan Fluet, Phoenix
Russell's a good guy who helps the community: I've helped [Bill Russell] acquire properties in the area [you write about]. We affectionately call it "the hood." He has single-handedly done more to clean up the area from drugs, prostitution, and related crime than anyone.
He is a kind, fair, hard-working man who can afford to live anywhere but has made a major commitment to "the hood," which includes his living there.
He often risks his own life driving "the hood" late at night to try to keep crime in check. He's called 911 hundreds of times to report the activities that drag any good neighborhood down and terrorize the good neighbors/families that live there.
He rents his properties to the homeless, convicted child molesters, and others who are not able to live anywhere else. Many times, the only requirement is that they work; they don't have to pay rent. He has been robbed and threatened many times.
There were two victims that one day. Bill [doesn't want] to hurt/kill other people. We will never know what [Percell] Bagley was thinking. Why he went after Mr. Russell. Drugs, alcohol, years of abuse in the prison system.
It appears Mr. Bagley is the type of criminal that has been a burden on the system, society, and could hurt anyone who he came in contact with.
Your article title depicts a man out looking for trouble, a man that is a vigilante, not a man that should be awarded medals for making a commitment to a community above and beyond any possible monetary reward.
I wouldn't do what he does: pick up garbage on a Sunday morning.
Dialogue on these issues (guns, the homeless, owners' property rights) is a good thing. I collect rent from homes. I carry a gun in my tuck. I've been threatened by lowlife types who have little to lose. I'm a firm believer in the Second Amendment.
Your article should depict a man trying to make things batter for everyone, getting attacked by a vagrant on his own property, and defending himself. Any other twist on this story is doing an injustice to Mr. Russell.
Rich Vairo, Scottsdale
JUST THE FACTS
• It should be under opinions and not news. Way too many loaded words. It's not objective journalism;
• Calling minors "prostitutes" is misleading, suggesting that these children chose to become sex workers. People who help the victims call them "sex slaves";
• According to the article, Moore and Kutcher used statistics from reliable sources. Whether the numbers are accurate or not, one would assume CNN and the New York Times are reliable. If they aren't, how can we think [VVM] is?
• Hopefully, [the writers] simply thought it would be fun to bust on a couple of celebrities. Let's see them do that with an article about same-sex marriage or global warming. Then I might think they are objective journalists and not tabloid hacks.
Theresa Monroe, city unavailable
Hmmm, Kutcher played dumb on TV: I wonder if [Kutcher and Moore] realize that many consider actors prostitutes.
A total of 300,000 child sex slaves in America. Ashton, really, dude? That's a lot of prostitutes, let alone child prostitutes. Our major cities would be flooded with prostitutes if this number were true.
John Hanson, city unavailable
Who cares if child prostitution isn't epidemic? So the numbers are wrong. That doesn't make me upset that there are public-service announcements attempting to raise awareness about child prostitution.
I think 827 is a large enough number of exploited children to get upset about, but maybe that's just me.
I'm sure that Kutcher and his famous friends thought that the so-called "frat boy" approach would be more engaging and memorable to audiences.
When it comes down to it, even if Kutcher and his buddies are in it for the attention (which seems unlikely), and even if their numbers are wrong, child prostitution still exists, is still wrong, and there's still a group of widely recognized individuals trying to make sure everyone knows about it.
I don't see the big issue here.
Jasmine Hardwick, city unavailable
Letter to Ashton from a retired call girl: You claim to be interested in helping victims of sex trafficking. That's very commendable, and I'd like to help you. In fact, I'm offering you almost half a million supporters who have contacts you and the police don't: namely, adult voluntary prostitutes in the United States.
Here's what you need to do to get our support:
• Stop exaggerating, using bogus statistics, and outright lying about sex workers, and stop associating with people who do,
• Stop linking yourself to people who cloak their anti-sex-work agenda in "child-sex-slave" scare tactics,
• Stop denying our intelligence by supporting "end demand" schemes that infantilize us and rob us of choice, and stop supporting groups that do so,
• Contact organizations like the Desiree Alliance, Sex Workers Outreach Project, or Sex Workers Without Borders, who can provide you with real data and solid studies, and who will be happy to answer any questions you have about adult voluntary prostitutes,
• Most importantly, support full decriminalization of adult prostitution so we and our clients can be free to report underage or coerced prostitutes we encounter without fear of arrest.
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Maggie McNeill, city unavailable
It's the fault of groups that live off the "scam": Why go after Kutcher and Moore with such vehemence while ignoring those who make their livings and otherwise profit from this "scam?"
You go to great lengths to show widespread use of these alleged stats, then act as if Kutcher alone is the culprit. At least he's using his own money.
Robert Cameron, city unavailable