The Elephant in
the Room

The op-ed piece by Hal Crowther was
priceless [Southern Voices: Weapons of Mass Stupidity, May 29 issue].

It was sadly funny, on target, and unblinking in its look at the downhill slide our country seems to find itself on. Isn’t it odd that everyone can see who the crazy person in a room is except the crazy person? Isn’t it sad that those living in the crazy country are the ones denying anything is wrong. Nearly everyone else in the world can see the thinly veiled motives of ‘dubya’ and his cronies.

So who’s crazy? If, as many apologists state, we are helping free the Iraqi people from repression, where is our concern for those in China, North Korea, and much of Africa? Of course it’s not about human rights, otherwise we wouldn’t be falling all over ourselves to get our business and money into China, pursuing the real savior, ever increasing profits. My hats off to Mr. Crowther for his writing and to you for publishing his important essay.

W. Eric Broviak

“A ‘Christian’ Perspective”

From the Christian perspective there are
several ways of looking at the shocking accusation of embezzlement and subsequent ruin of Rev. Christopher Platt. The first is that he is (hopefully) innocent but faces this test: “Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal which comes upon you to prove you, as though something strange were happening to you” (I Peter 4:12).

The second is that he is guilty (though frankly, what I’ve seen of the man, he doesn’t strike me as the embezzling type), and must confront merciful but tough divine retribution: “For the Lord disciplines him whom he loves and chastises every son he receives” (Hebrews 12:6).

A third and not very PC perspective which dovetails with chastisement is that his Purgatorio, as you ironically call it, is symbolic of another level of Rev. Platt’s life.

From the standpoint of historical, traditional, orthodox Christianity, the Reverend has knowingly or unknowingly been an embezzler of another sort. I refer to his liberal theology and ecclesiology which seems born out, for instance, by St. Augustine chapel’s theologically misleading ads, the Reverend’s endorsement of the homosexual lifestyle in The Chevy Chaser, or his poster-boy status for Ace.

I don’t doubt at all Platt’s sincerity or commitment, nor derive the slightest pleasure in seeing his life go up in smoke. But there is a lot to be said in this epoch of unprecedented apostasy in the West for shepherds who are spiritually entrusted with what the Catholic Church calls the “sacred deposit of faith,” but misuse it. It does make for an interesting parallel.

Whichever painful scenario is true is an opportunity for Reverend Platt.

Matthew Haltom

Something to Believe In

Dear ACE, I was very disappointed to
hear of Reverend Platt’s premature resignation.

I believe some find him threatening because he encouraged people to think for themselves as opposed to blindly accepting what was placed before them. It is sad to me that simply by encouraging knowledge and telling the truth he is considered a threat. Make no mistake, Chris is different. He says what he means, and does what he says. Maybe that makes him unconventional; personally, I find his views realistic and very refreshing.

My experience with Chris came when he was the officiant for my marriage. My husband and I were new to the area and had called several people, only to be turned away because we were already living together and were not practicing any religion. Chris took us in and treated us with respect. He listened to our concerns, helped us create a ceremony we could believe in, and didn’t make us feel guilty about our life choices.

He offered this service to everyone he met. His congregation was quite the motley crew: every age and every demographic was represented. He never strayed from his Christian beliefs, but he presented those beliefs in a way that was accessible to those of us who had been turned off by previous church experiences. His sermons were inspiring. I remember after one, my husband turned to me and whispered,”I feel like I should stand up and applaud.” I still remember that sermon and have shared it often with others.

Reverend Platt’s resignation is a tragic blow not only to his congregation, but to Lexington as well.

Chris was devoted to his church and spoke proudly of his work with the UK campus police and Moveable Feast. He took the title of Reverend seriously and wore it with honor. He taught those of us who had become distrustful of church, disheartened by religion, and discouraged by the world around us about faith. He gave us something to believe in.

There are not enough people in the world like Christopher Platt, and I believe it is a disservice to the community to ask him to resign.

Sarah Dorroh

Letters Policy: Ace LOVES to publish our mail (250 words or less please); please include name and daytime phone. No photocopies. No bulk mail. First come, first served. We may edit for space and grammar; we will limit frequency; and, on popular issues, we may print one or two letters to represent a segment of public opinion. Private correspondence should be labeled “NOT FOR PUBLICATION.”

Mail: 486 West Second St , Lexington, Ky 40507

Venerable Vets
God and Country—United We Stand will feature guest speakers Mayor Teresa Isaac, former Miss America Heather French Henry, and Vietnam Veteran Joe Padunaco.

Noon to 3pm, Saturday, June 14 in Woodland Park. Join area churches and community organizations, and the Central Kentucky Concert Band honoring veterans, current military personnel, and their families.

Match Game
U.S. Ambassador to Great Britain, Will Farish, extended his deadline of matching funds for the Carnegie Center to June 15. He pledged annual donations of $100,000 for five years if the Pubic Library and the city will match.

His informal agreement with council members is that the city would offer $40,000 in cash and $60,000 from “in kind” services.

The Center’s summer workshops are continuing as scheduled.

Dollars and Sense
The Bluegrass Group of the KY Sierra Club general meeting will be held Monday, June 16 at 7:30pm, at the Shriners Hospital, 1900 Richmond Rd. Richard Polk, an environmental architect, will show you how to save energy and money through environmental design. Free and open to the public.

Summer School
Thirty local middle and high school educators will be back in the classroom this week, attending the June 16-20 Facing History and Ourselves Teacher Academy, held at the Sayre School in Lexington. For more than 25 years,

Facing History, a Boston-based non-profit with offices across the country, has engaged teachers and students of diverse backgrounds in an examination of racism, prejudice, and anti-Semitism in order to promote the development of a more humane and informed citizenry.

By using case studies of the Holocaust and other examples of collective violence, the program helps students to make the essential connection between history and the moral choices they confront in their own lives.

Werner Coppel, a 78-year-old Nazi concentration camp survivor from Cincinnati, will address the teachers on the afternoon of June 19.

Puff, Puff, Pass?
An Ad Hoc committee formed by the the Urban County Council council to study the smoking ban issue created a proposal that bans smoking in restaurants, bars, and all public places.

The new ban proposal will be presented to the council as a whole on June 17th. Council members who voted against the ban argue the ban is too broad and has loopholes, which could limit the ban’s effectiveness.

Pro-smoking ban members say the city-wide ban is fair, and would be enforced by the police, fire, and health departments.

If the council as a whole approves of the draft proposal, it could go to first reading on June 24th.

Running Dry?
A vote on the takeover of Kentucky American Water scheduled last Tuesday has been delayed, in the presence of an offer from the company.

Council members want to address the water company’s proposal to avoid condemnation. The offer would give the government Jacobson Park and $500,000 to improve other city parks.

Urban County lawyers will look at the offer and the Council should decide on the offer and whether to condemn Kentucky American by June 24th.

On The Hook
Amidst the water vote and smoking ban proposal downtown,

Alltel workers are on strike as a result of stalled contract negotiations. The primary point of contention is the rising costs of healthcare benefits from the employees’ contribution.

Alltel has brought in company employees from around the country to work during the strike in an attempt to keep the strike from disrupting service to its customers.

To submit an advocacy/activism activity or event for Quickies, email rkirkland@aceweekly.com, or editor@aceweekly.com.