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Remembering Mark Gills

I would like to make a note to the editor about the article paying tribute to Mark Gillis [“A fond farewell to Mark Gillis”; Nov. 5, 2008; by Jim Dowell Jr.]. Jim Dowell gave a moving tribute to a man whom it would be very hard to top as a human being. His column breathed life into Mark again as if reanimated by words. I am thankful to read an article from such a feeling and warm man. Thanks, Virginia Kassay Greensboro

Defending Clarey’s wife

In response to Ed Bankey’s Nov. 12 letter, I have a question: Was he having a bad hair day or did he lose a ton of retirement money on the stock market or worse, upset about the new president-elect and unloading on YES! Weekly, the editor and his family? I can justify anyone’s differing views and he has a right to his opinions, but making generalizations about the editor’s wife, imagined lifestyle and biting, below-the-belt remarks intent to distastefully incite, provoke, reveal his lack of character. What are you really upset about, Ed? What is your fear? With the election past, I observed with sadness, the biting, hate-driven remarks steered toward women running for high office in both parties, two women with very different views and ways of operating. I’m not saying either was my favorite candidate, as I’m a moderate that wanted to be a stay-home mommy, not a libber, but it appears to me that this country is not at all ready to trust a mere “woman” to run for high office. We seem to be conquering racism faster than sexism, nothing against the president-elect. Whomever would have run would need all our prayers daily to get us out of this mess. Now the public seems to have picked up on some of the recent nastiness in campaigning and are smearing people they don’t even know. Ed, why would you pick on the editor’s wife and not him, to rile her husband? I think he is too smart for that energy-sucking ploy. It seems that certain males when upset (I don’t like generalized male bashing either) like to take it out on women any chance they get. It was very revealing in the campaign where racism, another evil, was more an undercurrent. As a former member of the Guilford County Committee to Reduce Family Violence, this type of derogatory remark is an example of patriarchal power/control used against women and children. This election spoke to me, saying, “We have not come a long way, baby.” The culture is still so ingrained to accept such behavior about more than half of the population. Why are the commentators sleeping? That is the insidiousness of this beast. I happen to know the editor’s wife. I trust her professional knowledge and expertise for my health. She is attractive, smart and caring, and despite managing a full-time job and three children with her husband, she always looks like a model and carries herself with class. I wonder how she does it all, like so many women. Mr. Bankey, you would do well to take some lessons from her. Demetra Bakas Greensboro