To the editor:

Whoa! What in heaven does a “No Limit Texas Hold’em Poker Tournament” have to do with a so-called “family-oriented” Brownwood Reunion? Not much, other than to enhance the “image” of those promoting the event for their own gain.

I am distressed that the promoters chose to involve Dallas Huston and the Brownwood Lions in its “Lucky No. 7” theme. It seems they used the “hurry-up” offense as they are prone to do, by socking it to him in a public place in front of others involved, without a prior warning. How tacky and impolite. I am sure he would not want to make light of the hard work, talent, blood, sweat and tears involved in making a state championship team. I don’t believe Coach Wood would appreciate his team or any sport being used to put a “halo” over the promotion of a gambling or quasi-gambling activity/promotion. Teams are more respected for a job well done than for luck.

How does this really benefit the community (which does, incidentally, include and affect all of Brown County)? What do you think the end game is? The persons being “invited” to this event are not coming for a family reunion with penny ante or quarter games, if indeed they come. There is an element in this state that doesn’t care a whit for this community, but are willing to come here to give it a taste of Austin or Houston by participating in “uncharitable” activities. How sad. It is notable that the addition of the new event was announced publicly so late in the game — again, the “hurry-up” offense, or perhaps an end-around, allowing little time for comment or reaction, the lack of which is notable in a community boasting a Christian university, dozens of churches and lots of folks who claim to be law abiding. Who from Brownwood will be the Hold’em champ?

In the not too distant past, a very intuitive and intelligent professional woman noted in a letter to your paper that the promotion of the “wine and cheese” at the Stars of Texas Art show was given more attention than the art or artists. How sage her observation was of what is really valued by some in our community. In this case, the “Lucky No. 7” theme overshadows the many “dear hearts and gentle people” who call Brownwood and Brown County home but have no voice in this crass exploitation.

There once was a successful ad campaign: “The gift that keeps on giving.” I believe the “gift” of the “Brownwood Feels Like Home” slogan (brand?) is one that takes more from the community that it gives. Beginning with the cost of emblazoning the two water towers and affixing the logo to all of the various city forms and property where it appears. Coach Wood would have been proud to see “seven state championships” on the towers. That didn’t come cheaply.

Are we a gullible bunch of rubes, or what?

Mary Lynn Taylor

May