All About Cats and Dogs

Pooper scooper: Thanks for your article exposing the fraudman, Bill Heywood ("The Big Stink," Amy Silverman, September 26). Every time I listen to his unprofessional radio talk show, my stomach turns. He does not have a clue about the events of the day and gives extremely liberal views on all issues, whether or not it's good for the country. With his "no talent" demeanor other than a smooth voice, he really should be ejected out of the industry along with Heidi (the other nitwit). Their views are disgraceful and present to Arizona the mindset of a Jesse Raphael. Not too cool! He is sarcastic, pompous and over the hill as far as broadcasting is concerned. That station needs some new blood in the a.m. Get the hook!

But most of all, you exposed him for what he and his phony wife are. Money-mongering, pitiful individuals who prey on the innocent (animals) to make $$.

Name withheld by request

Soul Man

Advocating for an advocate: Thank you for your heartfelt and dignified portrayal of Jack Harvey ("Mental Giant," Paul Rubin, September 26). Your article captured and portrayed this man in his element, a fighting spirit with his measured, thoughtful passion, even if he did not think people were listening. He could center us back to the important subject again and again, to the plight and the stigma of the seriously mentally ill and Arizona's mental health for future generations to come.

Mickie White-Carstens
Mental Health Advocates Coalition of Arizona

Political Point

Personality conflict: Regarding the comment about Dick Mahoney (like him until you meet him): Come on, be fair ("Primary Post-Mortem," Spiked, September 19). I have liked what you have written and apparently stand for. Meeting you wouldn't change my mind -- no matter how unlikable you probably are personally. Being in a position to influence often less-than-informed readers, your personal bias should be kept to yourself. The questions should be whether Dick is for real, and can he do the job as well or better than the status quo alternative candidates.

Why don't you make it your business to find out and let us have some useful information? You are otherwise forgiven.

Kevin T. Ahern
Via e-mail

Sheriff Snit

Running afoul of the law: Your Robert Nelson should receive an Academy Award for storytelling. His diatribe on Joe Arpaio is absolutely yellow journalism to the nth degree ("Goon Squad," September 19). You must have interviewed the mayor, as your story sounded like you were there. Or is it all hearsay?

Why would anyone leave a 3-year-old in a closed vehicle in 100-degree-plus weather? Thank God the lady did call someone, or we might have had another child's death. New Times archives are a bunch of baloney. What whistle-blower did Joe ruin? If there were illegal wiretaps, prove it.

Joe has an 80 percent acceptance rate by the voters. If you're looking to make a name for yourself, don't try to destroy a man with almost five decades of successful police work, starting as a beat cop on New York Avenue in Washington D.C. to become the most respected and toughest sheriff in America.

You owe him and his deputies a formal apology. Are you man enough to do it?

John E. Ryon

Hospital Zone

Heart of the matter: My 16-month-old son, Max, is one of Dr. Teodori's many miracles ("Prince of Hearts," Paul Rubin, September 19). When our son was diagnosed with a heart defect, we felt our world was over -- but instead it was just taking a slight detour! Along the winding path of the heartache and stress of an eight-month hospital stay, we were blessed to come to know and love Dr. Teodori and all the many wonderful people who work with him. They have become part of our family; we love them all!

What this man considers "a day's work" brings more joy to more people then he could ever know. All of these people are praying for his quick recovery. Not only because we want him to return to his miraculous work, but because we love him. We as "heart families" have always known that he fights for our kids, and your article confirms this! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Patricia L. Cioppa

Not the only game in town: There is no doubt that the car crash that resulted in injuries to Dr. Michael Teodori, Phoenix cardiac surgeon, was tragic. As the article explained, Dr. Teodori is one of the finest surgeons in his specialty. He not only gets excellent results, he cares deeply for his patients and their families.  

However, to imply that he is the only qualified pediatric cardiac surgeon in Phoenix would be, in my view, a grave misstatement. The pediatric cardiac surgeons at St. Joseph's, Dr. Ravi Koopot and Dr. David Cleveland, also have many years of experience and much-deserved respect from the medical community. They also perform "highly complex" pediatric heart procedures on children, from the smallest infants to teenagers, with remarkable results.

From the New Times article, one might get the impression that it is not safe to send your children to St. Joe's for surgery, including heart surgery, that care there is second-rate. That is simply not true. As a parent, I would not hesitate to have my own children operated on here at St. Joe's by our extremely qualified and compassionate physicians. The St. Joe's Pediatric Intensive Care Unit has a very knowledgeable, experienced and dedicated staff that provides excellent post-op care for pediatric patients. The new PICU is state-of-the-art and utilizes the latest technologies developed from research.

We at St. Joseph's continue to pray for Dr. Teodori's speedy recovery. Meanwhile, I think the public can feel confident and fortunate that there are two very fine pediatric facilities in Phoenix that provide excellent specialized care to children.

Lorraine Vance
CVOR nurse, St. Joseph's

Broken heart: After reading your cover story, "Prince of Hearts" (Paul Rubin, September 19), it seems that Paul Rubin must be a close personal friend of Dr. Mike Teodori, or must long to be. You would think that the way Paul gushes about him, he is hawking little cans of him on the Home Shopping Network.

The truth is, though, this isn't really what is most annoying about his glowing testimonial disguised as journalism. No, the really annoying part is the way he used one man's opinion to slander and trash the image of what many people would say is a truly great hospital, in spite of what one doctor thinks.

Oh, I know you also have the input of all the people whose children's lives he has saved, but what would you expect them to say? "He sucks, but he did save my kid's life and all."

Well, guess what? St. Joe's saved my daughter's life. She didn't have a bad heart, but she was born almost three months premature and spent three full months after being born emergency C-section in the St. Joe's Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. It was the most stressful and harrowing three months of my life, and I owe a lot of making it through to the NICU staff.

So you might want to let your readers know that there is another side to one doctor's opinion, even an incredibly talented one.

Of course, this really has nothing at all to do with Dr. Teodori. This is about writing an article completely from one point of view. I certainly didn't see any quotes from anyone at St. Joe's, or anyone who has had great care there, like me.

It just goes to show what everyone I know has always said: If you want to know what nightclub is trendiest, or where to get a boob job, the New Times is your source. If you want a source of nonbiased, valuable journalism, you best look further down the line.

Tee Combs

Film Critic

Not a sleeper: As I read A. Wayne Senzee's letter concerning Robert Wilonsky's review of the film "Signs" (Letters, September 5), one line stuck out: "Perhaps I wasn't paying enough attention."

The reply is no, you weren't. This movie is not about aliens; the aliens were simply a catalyst for Mel Gibson's character's mind to be opened to the possibility that all things happen for a reason. It could have been any catastrophic event (I'm just grateful that the subject of aliens was chosen, rather than the events of 9/11).

The fact that the reader wasn't paying attention, though, really isn't his fault. Hollywood marketed this film completely wrong, playing up the alien/crop circle story line, when it actually had very little to do with what the film was really about. The majority of people I have spoken to that didn't like the film went expecting something in the vein of "The X-Files," and that was all they wanted. When, instead, they got a parable, they were disappointed.

It's sad that the film industry feels it has to package a meaningful film like "Signs" as a thriller to get asses in the seats, but sadder still that the asses in the seats can't open their minds a bit more to the possibility that there can be something more to a movie than just awesome special effects.  

Shannon Earl
Via e-mail

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