Not everyone likes what we do or what we plan to do. [Please mark this down as one of the great understatements of this decade!]
The following letter to the editor appeared in the latest issue of The Dallas Observer in response to an article their reporter, Jesse Hyde, wrote about our CityWalk @ Akard project in Downtown Dallas. I've "cleaned it up" a bit by blocking out a word or two!
Out in the Cold
Poof, problem solved: Larry James ("Old Building, New Lives," by Jesse Hyde, November 30) is an idiot! Instead of building a refuge for the drug addicts and drunks in the area of Lincoln Plaza, why doesn't he move it closer to City Hall so he can gain some real exposure? He's just going to cause the devaluation of every property on Akard Street. I have a better idea, Larry: Build an army barracks-style dwelling on the %$#@*& side of town and teach all of the poor "unfortunates" of the world to bathe and become productive citizens. Rezone downtown and eliminate the stores that sell liquor and beer. Hire 10 agents to arrest panhandlers and after three strikes, they're off to Huntsville.
Institutionalize the rest and poof, problem solved. You liberal %$#@*& make me want to run for mayor.
Over and out from North Dallas.
[You can view the original, uneditied text of the letter at: http://www.dallasobserver.com/Issues/2006-12-07/news/letters.html.]
Fun, huh? Great press, right?
Here's what I sent back to the Editor at The Observer:
Thanks for caring enough to write, Mr. Krause. Of course, I don't agree with you, but I expect that is simply because I have enjoyed the benefit of actually knowing and talking to very, very low-income persons who currently live on the streets of our city.
First, please understand that our CityWalk @ Akard project will not be a shelter filled with unproductive persons as you assume in your analysis.
Second, I invite you to come down and meet some of the people who are such a problem for you. Each first Thursday of every month we host what we call the "Urban Engagement Book Club." I'm sure it would surprise you that 20 or so homeless persons attend every month and get involved in the conversation. We meet at the Highland Park United Methodist Church on the campus of SMU. So, you wouldn't have to venture very far from the safety of North Dallas. I promise you you would leave with a different point of view.
Again, thanks for your opinion.
President and CEOCentral Dallas Ministries
Critics have a way of keeping your focused!
They also allow you to work on motives and truth.
At times it feels like a battle around here.
And please, this is no call for sympathy. I just needed to get this out in the midst of a group of trusted friends!
What to do with the naysayers in your life???