Pedestal Pusher  

In the piece “Selena, Role Model” [April 2021], why are you trying to say that we’ve put Selena on a pedestal and “maybe it’s time to take her off”? It implies that fans give our allegiance to Selena like she was a cult leader. She was a singer her fans adored. She wasn’t our friend or sister or mom. You know why I loved Selena? Because as a very pale-skinned Latina, I dealt with so many identity issues, not feeling like a “real” Latina. We don’t get many heroes that look like us. Then there she was, same body type and same coloring, and she was successful. Selena dealt with many of the same deep-rooted issues that Latin Americans do, on a public stage. There’s such a deeper meaning behind that, and you clearly don’t get it. Just because you’re from Texas doesn’t mean you know best.
Angelina Gutierrez, Oakland, California 

A Long Way From LBJ

Thank you for one of the best articles yet on the Texas power grid issue [“Power Plays,” April 2021]. The author’s comments regarding Lyndon B. Johnson and others obtaining political power to provide security and opportunity for those that elected them are spot-on. Today politicians are using power only to create security for themselves and opportunity for special interest groups, leaving the general public to foot the bill. The author was certainly correct when stating that those responsible for the dark days of February hope that we forget how mad we are and eventually won’t even know whom to be mad at. 
Perry Roberts, Victoria

Shelf Discovery  

Your article about a Texan discovering Conan the Barbarian brought back memories [“Conan the Vicarious,” April 2021]. I had a very similar introduction to Conan and the works of Robert E. Howard, but mine happened thousands of miles away. My parents took me to India during my summer vacations to visit family. My cousins there had school during the summer, and I usually moped around in boredom. One day my uncle noticed I was reading some forgettable fantasy novel and told me to come with him. He pulled out a ring of keys and opened a door to a dark and musty room filled with all sorts of long-unused and dust-covered items. Through the maze of objects, toward the back of the room, was a large metal cabinet that held the full Conan series published by Lancer. He handed me the first Conan volume and told me where I could find the room keys. I tore through all twelve volumes that summer and never looked back. Conan, Kull, Cormac Mac Art, and Kane became my escape from a somewhat self-centered worldview common to teenage youth. I am waiting for my son to get a bit older to give him the first volume of Conan, and maybe one day both of us can make the trip to Cross Plains for Howard Days.
Sumit Bhandari, Rockville, Maryland