To the Extreme
Brophy backlash: Jarrett Maupin's efforts are certainly admirable. I, too, am a strong proponent of civil rights in this country, and believe the dialogue between the races needs to be reexamined to promote a better sense of diversity and understanding in our great country. Unfortunately, Jarrett Maupin takes this fight for civil rights to an extreme, effectively eliminating any real progress in the fight for equality that has been reality for minority groups in the United States ("Kid Sharpton," Jimmy Magahern, February 3).
To say nothing of Mr. Maupin's political beliefs (he participated in on-campus debates as a member of the Teenage Republicans), his version of his dismissal from Brophy College Preparatory is simply inaccurate and misinformed, and your reporting on this topic is shoddy at best.
In transitioning from Brophy to St. Mary's High School, Mr. Maupin's hostility has not ended. I have many friends at St. Mary's who quote Maupin replying to simple queries with responses such as: "The black man has many struggles." Indeed, Mr. Maupin, the black man does have many struggles. We are certainly happy you recognize that fact, but that does not serve as an excuse for your poor academic performance at Brophy.
Maupin obviously didn't care about Brophy, and now he is too busy creating controversy out of nothing to concentrate on his senior-year studies.
Mr. Magahern, next time you choose to slander a fine institution such as Brophy, please be ready for the backlash that will result from its alumni. An article like this would not even be acceptable in a high school publication. Shame on New Times for verbally masturbating to the greater Phoenix area.
David Andrew Gaona, Brophy class of 2003, Tucson
Turning the tide: Thanks for telling the truth about the racism at Brophy College Prep. It's time somebody did! We are members of a minority group, and I can tell you that my son went through hell at that school. Rich kids can be very inhumane toward people from different backgrounds and cultures. It wasn't everybody, but there were many kids who made his life miserable, and the administration refused to do anything about it.
We have another relative there now, and I don't want him punished for my comments, so please don't publish my name. So far, things seem to be better there for him than they were for my son. Maybe things have changed over the past few years.
Name withheld by request
Pots and kettles: I am absolutely horrified by the utter lack of journalistic integrity displayed in the cover story "Kid Sharpton." As a senior at Brophy College Preparatory, I can say that Mr. Magahern's characterization of Brophy as a school "notorious for its low representation of minorities" and as a school with a hostile attitude toward minorities is categorically untrue.
Mr. Magahern's presentation of Jarrett Maupin's time at Brophy and his dismissal shows that he failed to check his facts.
I was a classmate of Jarrett's and can testify that the majority of the student body viewed him as a demagogue who delighted in creating conflict. He was a poor student who seemed more interested in getting his picture in the newspaper than in his grades.
This article proves that New Times is nothing more than a trashy gossip rag that isn't even worthy of being used to wipe urine off the floor of a public restroom.
Daniel D. Caldwell Jr., Scottsdale
Inspiring leadership: What a wonderful article by Jimmy Magahern on "Kid Sharpton." As a black person in Phoenix, it's refreshing to see a young man following in the footsteps of our great civil rights leaders like Jesse Jackson and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Too many of our young men fall prey to rap music and drugs. They aren't interested in much more than obtaining fancy cars and jewelry. This young man you wrote about, Jarrett Maupin, should be a beacon to black youth everywhere. Maybe he will inspire others to care about what really matters in this world. I surely hope so.
Wilma K. Johnson, via the Internet
No worse than anyone else: I just read your article on Jarrett Maupin. I have the utmost respect for Jarrett. I had the opportunity to be his classmate at Brophy Prep and was very sad to see him leave. I am very happy that Jarrett is finally getting the recognition that he deserves for all of his work, but I am very disappointed in the way that you presented this article.
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It's unfortunate that you felt the need to slander Brophy and take attention away from the focus of your article, Jarrett.
It would be a lie to say that there is no racism at St. Mary's. It would be a lie to say that there is no racism in Arizona. It would be a lie to say that there is no racism in the United States. It is a problem that plagues our nation, and Brophy is no different.
It's a shame that you chose to stereotype Brophy as a racist institution. As student body president of Brophy Prep, I invite New Times to campus to spend time with the students -- white, black, Hispanic, Indian, whoever. I believe you would rethink your attitude toward the Brophy community.
Sean Tierney, Phoenix