New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - July 18, 1985, New Braunfels, Texas
Dave Kramer, Editor ami General Manager Susan Haire, Managing EditorINGREDIENTS OF A SUCCESSFUL^D
0 0 0 9 0
Reader supports idea of committee
To tile Editor:
This letter is in response to Mr. Felix Roque’s comments in the newspaper on July 9.
First of all, Mr. Roque, you should feel proud for the Mexican Americans who are trying to do something to improve a situation (whatever it may be). If the police department is doing a good job, then you have nothing to worry about. The constant complaining about how insulted and against this committee you are, makes you sound a little worried. You should concentrate your efforts (as I intend to do) and join the committee and find out what can be done to improve situations that need improving. I am sure that the Police Department is not exempt from improvement.
To the individual who thought up the idea of organizing this committee, I Congradulate you and offer my assistance
Obsession with sports makes for inferior education
To the editor:
Now comes our hallowed academicians with their weasel words, “Modify the no-pass, no-play rule..."and we confidently await much more of the same.
Why not face our alternatives? Either we can continue to use all our educational facilities as prep schools for professional sports or we can enforce the spirit and letter of the law. If the latter, perhaps one day our educational system may not rightly deserve the second-rate status we now enjoy. Our curious obsession with professional sports is the salient factor that has made American education inferior to that of all western Europe
George RayEllen GoodmanAmericans are adept at trivializing
BOSTON-A friend of mine, a man who chases the cutting edge of change the way his Gallic ancestors once pursued the holy grail, tells me that he is now “post-Yuppie." This isn't a formal announcement mind you. That isn’t necessary.
I already knew that Yuppiedom was passe. In selected urban areas, women have burned their bow ties, begun leaving their running shoes at home and grown defensive about ordering white-wine spritzers. Men are increasingly secretive about owning VCRs and embarrassed to have the espresso machine right out ;there on the kitchen counter.
It was inevitable that my friend, who along with two others are probably the reigning troika of trends (I suspect they have a New
York Mgagazine reporter permantly assigned), would be early in and early out of Yuppiedom.
So what struck me was not the fact that he was in a post-Yuppie phase. It was the fact that he was using a post-Yuppie phrase.
With nary a warning from the traditional trend spotters, it appears that the post-war babies of the post-industrial society have begun placing their favorite prefix all over the American scene. These are the four little letters -p,o,s,t,-which once meant • after," as in post-operative. But now they are being used to write premature political post-mortums.
Consider the academic who recently drew a profile of middleclass young American voters. They were, he told a reporter, “post-
The implication was that these voters had already been through the heavy philosophical stuff. They were not hostile to ideology, they were beyond it. Perhaps they’d taken it freshman year. Now, ideology was a bit like Betta-Max. It was okay, but they wouldn’t want to get stuck with it when something better came along.
I^ast year, the big phrase was post-feminist. Any young woman w ho had not personally signed up for Radical Feminist Cell 16 was called a member of the post-femimst generation. The label managed to weardate the women's movement so that it seemed unfashionable Feminism itself was described as something the country had outgrow n.
like a signed training bra.
Putting the four-letter ‘post" before the right sort of word is the kiss of datedness. The word becomes a Perrier gone flat in the marketplace. But it does this in the most apparently benign, nonjudgmental, nuetral sort of w ay
Consider the man I heard on the radio talking about the needs <4 Americans iii the post-civil-rights era The what Separation of church and state, and free speech, he went on flatly, w ere ail splendid ideas, but well, what do we need now, for the 1980 s?
Then there are the commentators who talk about th« Reagan post-welfare state, instead of wliat they mean: tile anti-welfare state. There are even sociologists talking calmly
about a post-liberate wo;Id and a post-verbal generation. Once a 35-year-old described himself to me as a post-peacenik I did not at that moment have the nerve to ask him whether he currently was “into" war.
I suppose there nught be some modest value in this post-age I think it would be amusing to be post-young instead of rruddie-aged. Reformed smokers could become post-smokers. Atheists could choose to be positivist. Vegetarians could be post-carnivores Retired citizens, post-workers. Divorce, post-marriage. The rest I would leave to post-erity
But I am wary of linguistic tricks * Post" is being sprinkled through the political language more generously than the dreaded "neo’’ ever was
If my friend wants to be post-Yuppie, good luck to him In his trendy troika the Yuppie has gone the way of the Babbitt and the Preppie I don't care if he stops serving shitake mushrooms the way he once quit on kiwis There is hardly any social judgment to be made between shitakes and chanterelles No one really cares if we live in a post-kiwi world (except, I suppose, the kiwi grow ers >.
But I get uncomfortable when we turn ideas into trends, when we trivialize concepts and values into games of "ms" and “outs." When ideology, Literacy and civil rights are treated like racquetball, nouvelle cuisine and new-wave music, it's time to write a post-scnpt to the era Iii bel it post-cerebral.James Kilpatrick
Shana Alexander has written stunning, true-to-life thriller
“Hey!” said my wife. She was knee-deep in grandchildren, four of whom are under the tender age of 3, and I was not being supportive. ‘ For two days you’ve had your nose in that book.'*
“Ah," I said, “but what a book!"
And Shana Alexander, my old sparring partner on "BO Minutes,’ has indeed written a stunning, smashing, absorbing wholly mesmerizing book. It is called “Nutcracker.” It is the story of a murder that occurred in Utah seven years ago and of Hie trails that followed long after the crime Yet she provides much more than a retelling of a news story. This is a biography of the very first chop.
Shana’s subjects are the Bradshaw family of Salt Lake City, a Merman family, an industrious and outwardly conventional family. Behind a facade of uninteresting respectability was a crumbling structure. Bernice Jewett Bradshaw was a neglected wife, Franklin James Bradshaw a workaholic husband. Married in 1924, they would acieve substantial wealth; he would make millions through a chain of auto parts stores and through shrewd investments in
oil. They would live a penurious life, and they would have three daughters.
One of the three daughters, Frances, figures in this story as the I.ady Macbeh of the drama. Born in 1938, Frances began in the cradle to establish a reputation as a demanding, imperious, temptuous child. No one could ever say no to Frances. Married in 1959, she gave birth to two sons, I^irry and Marc. They were born IO months apart I 1960. I*irry would wind up for evaluation at a Pennsylvania hospital for the criminally insane; Marc would wind up in prison for murder.
The principle figure is the demented Frances She had much in common not only with l.ady Macbeth, but also with Medea. As Euripides told the tale, Medea began her career by killing her brother. She fell in love with Jason. To hold his love, she tricked the daughters of King Pelias into murdering their fathher. Sent into exile in Corinth, she ends up by hating Jason. In revenge for his deserting her, she poisons Jason’s daughter by his new wife and completes the horror by murdering their two sons.
Frances Bradshaw, living a dissolute life in New York, was possessed by the same demons She alternately babied and abused lier children; she bound son Marc to her side in a barbed-wire embrace. She commissioned the boys to steal from their grandfather; she forged checks; she raved pathetically that her sisters were conspiring to disinherit her. Fearing that her father might make a will that would cut her off, she ordered Marc to murder him. The obedient boy, 17, flew from New York to Texas, where he bought a hhandgun, thence to Salt l*ike City. There he committed murder most foul Nine years before this act of patricide, Frances had taken a second husband, Frederik Schreuder. She was known a- the wealthy Mrs. Scheuder, the benefactor of the New York City Ballet, at the time of her arrest and trial. I suppose the Schreuder case was big news in New York, and certainly big news in Utah, but the story never reached the boondoc ks in Virginia. I will not spoil the suspense for equally uninformed readers by rewealing how the trial of Frances
lurried out I liave said it a good many times publicly, and remark it again here, that my beloved adversary of “60 Minutes" was out of her element in TV. Shana is a writer. She is the best court reporter in the country, the best anywhere since Rebecca West covered the Nuremburg trials. Her previous books on the Patty Hearst case and trial of Jean Harris are classics in their field.
“Nutcracker” is the best of the three Her narrative builds to a shattering climax with the murder. Then it subsides, regains a driving power, and builds to a final few pages with the certainty of the Eroica's last measures. The book is ornamented with Shana's insights and with Shana’s beautiful verbs. “In matters of family blainesmanship," shhe writes, ' there is no such thhing as a statute of limitations.’’ She speaks of Frances, who seldom went out “except to graze the aisles of expensive department stores.’’
This is a super book I write about it because at the moment I am weary of writing or thinking about taxes, budgets, deficits, terrorists, and Supreme Court opinions.
Rep Edmund Kuempel Texas House of Representatives P O Box 2910 Austin. Texas 78769
Sen. John Traeger Texas Senate Capitol Station Austin, Texas 787Vi
Sen. Lloyd Bentsen United States Senate Room 240 Russell Bldg Washington, D C. 20610
Sen. Phil Gramm United States Senate Washington D.C . 20510
Gov. Mark White Governor's Office Room 200 State Capitol Austin, Texas 78701
Rep. Tom Loeffler U S. House of Representatives 1212 Long worth House Office Bldg
Washington, D.C. 20515
Rep. Mac Sweeney (Guadalupe County) U.S. House of Representatives Washington, D.C., 20515
DOC, IM PLANNING A RBL!Lf- FUNE RAISER WH£N I GLT HOMB WHAT CAN I 5AHB YOUR GREATEST NEW HBRE IN THE /CAMPS?, ~
ACTUALLY, JIMMY, MOST OF
what we Neap is alreapy
IN ETHIOPIA FOOR Heptane, VEHICLES - THEY'RE ALL ON THE POCKS, BOT HELP UP BY REP TAPE
SOME TIMES IT GBTS SO BAP, OVE JUST GO IN AT NIGHT ANO STAGE A RAIO ON OUR OWN SUPPLIES OF COURSE IT MEANS PAYING OFF A LOT OF CUSTOMS V^V
•THATS RIGHI, FOLKS, YOUR HOO CONTRIBUTION UUU HELP US BRIBE FOUR ETHIOPIAN Off FOALS!4
MAKE IT TEN. mem A YUN GOOP
The Herald Zeitung welcomes the opinions of its readers, and we’re happy to publish letters to the editor.
While readers’ opinions on local issues generally are of more interest to other readers, we welcome letters on any topic — local, state, national or international — that the writer chooses to address. Content will not prevent publication unless the
letter is judged to be potentially libelous.
All letters to the editor should be signed and authorship must be verifiable by telephone. Anonymous letters will not be published.
Send your letter to: Mailbag, New Braunfels Herald Zeitung, P.O. Drawer 361, New Braunfels Texas, 78131. Letters may also be hand delivered to the newspaper offices at 186 S. Castell.