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In March’s letters: Fort Dearborn semantics and Top Doctors tiffs


MIDDLE GROUND

Fort Dearborn [The True Story of the Deadly Encounter at Fort Dearborn, by Geoffrey Johnson, December] is a complicated subject that probably deserves a whole book, but eliminating the word “massacre” doesn’t make things any better or aid in our understanding. It’s still a painful and altogether gruesome story. John Low calls the term massacre “a loaded descriptor.” It sure is! [Fort Dearborn] was an ambush that involved ten-to-one odds and included the mutilation, torture, and murder of civilians, including unarmed women and children. Sounds like a massacre to me! Keeping the powerful statue [The Fort Dearborn Massacre by Carl Rohl-Smith, commissioned to memorialize the event] in a warehouse doesn’t solve things. Moving it to Michigan certainly makes no sense. How about displaying it in a context here in town that can somehow tell the whole story of Fort Dearborn and still honor the soldiers who died defending Chicago?

Paul Petraitis
Chicago

 

DOS AND DON’TS

I was pleased to see that DOs [osteopathic physicians with a focus on preventive care] were included in the listing of the top 347 doctors in the Chicago area [Chicago’s Top Doctors, by Marcia Froelke Coburn and Geoffrey Johnson, January]. However, I am concerned that, once again, Chicago used the term “MD” as a synonym for all physicians. Although DOs and MDs practice side by side in major medical centers, hospitals, and doctors’ offices, osteopathic physicians provide a distinct “whole person” approach to health care. By referring to every physician in your magazine as an MD, you are inaccurately labeling the DOs as well as misleading your readers to believe that MDs are the only option when choosing a physician.

Karen J. Nichols, DO
Downers Grove

 

Having received your Top Doctors magazine in our office, I take offense to some of your paid “special advertising” [content]. Reading the cover of the magazine, Top Doctors, and then seeing the advertising pages, a layman would assume that [doctors in this section] are at the top of their fields. You should have a clearer disclaimer for these.

Laura Schubert
Downers Grove

 

Each year, you fail to include emergency physicians in your Top Doctors list. These doctors are often required to intervene [in health crises] with skill and wisdom, despite imperfect information and less-than-ideal conditions. Some might conclude that these physicians are the best that medicine has to offer.

Mark Mackey, MD
Chicago

 

Editors’ note: Chicago’s Top Doctors is an aid for selecting a physician. We do not include emergency medicine specialists under the assumption that in crises, people likely find the closest ER rather than first consulting a list.

 

FADING GLORY

I’m sure Jeff Ruby has heard from many admirers of his grandfather’s World War II experiences, which he shared with Chicago readers [“Flesh and Blood,” Outer Drive, October]. My father, a China-Burma-India veteran, was pulled off a C-47 just before it was shot down by the Japanese, killing all aboard. We as a nation must never forget “The Greatest Generation.” Sadly, in time, we may. Thanks again, Jeff, for sharing your grandfather’s story.

Robert Shipplett
Galesburg

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