Mass Appeal

Thank you, Michael Feingold, for your sensitive, intelligent review of Terrence McNally's Corpus Christi ["Texas Nativity," October 20], which has inspired so much narrow-minded sentiment from religious groups offended by the portrayal of a gay Jesus.

Like McNally, I was raised Catholic, and I appreciate his efforts to examine his faith. This was encouraged by my parents and priests, and I think that's why I still go to mass.

Roman Catholicism has a rich and deep history, worthy of critical study. I am not so naive as to ignore the many blemishes in the Church's history, which must be admitted and considered. Don't those who are opposed to the play realize that asking questions is necessary to keep the church alive?

Charlotte Nicklas
Boston, Massachusetts

Right to Li(F)E

Wouldn't You Folks at the Voice, just once, like to try being journalists instead of propagandists? Wayne Barrett's article on Senator Al D'Amato and abortion ["Secret Agent Man," October 13] was filled with distortions and half-truths. Clearly, your paper loathes D'Amato, but aren't you obligated to at least try telling the truth?

Barrett quoted Helen Westover, a Right to Life Party leader, who claimed to be quoting me quoting Al D'Amato. Your reporter called and asked if the quote was accurate. My response: "absolutely not." But instead of publishing my clear denial, your manipulative writer said, "Lisante did not directly confirm the conversation" with D'Amato.

Hey guys, that's a bold-faced lie. Because Al D'Amato didn't promise me anything but an open ear and an open mind about legislation concerning the rights of preborn children. And I told that to your duplicitous reporter. I guess the truth didn't match his preset agenda to get Al D'Amato.

Papers and coverage like yours are precisely why a majority of Americans can't and don't believe the media anymore. You lie and you do it badly.

Monsignor Jim Lisante
West Hempstead, New York

Wayne Barrett replies: When interviewed, Monsignor Lisante amended the Westover quote without flatly refuting it. Westover said Lisante claimed D'Amato had promised to do "anything" the Right to Life Party "wants in the future." Lisante said D'Amato had promised to be "more sensitive to the party's point of view" on international abortion funding and the naming of proabortion judges--precisely what the party "wants in the future." The statements are virtually equivalent, and the monsignor does not deny the quote I attributed to him.

Puff Daddy

Re The letter from Gary Indiana in last week's issue:

So I'm a failed artist, am I?

As long as we're telling truths here, let me add a few more! Gary Indiana is a Hollywood hack! He used to be radical but now he's a sell-out! Everyone hates him, especially his old pals! And here's the best one of all: when he wrote on art for the Voice, he only puffed his friends, whose work he collected! That's why he stopped being a Voice art critic!

And I've got more news for you! Your paper stinks!

Walter Robinson, Editor
ArtNet Magazine

Far-Out Tortuga

In Deborah Jowitt's review of Chance O ["Dream On," October 20], she writes: "Chance O's knock-me-down music, written and played live by the band Tortuga (the songs have lines like 'I want to dissect your face'), makes dancers stick--vibrating--to the back wall, swim in a dreadful sea, and silently mouth off at one another."

While Tortuga is quite appreciative of Ms. Jowitt's assessment of our work as "knock-me-down music," as the singer, guitarist, and lyricist for the band, I should clarify that the music performed was a 20-minute instrumental. Not only were there no lyrics in the piece (or even a single microphone on stage), I have never sung the words, "I want to dissect your face."

If we're all going to play loosey-goosey with our quotations, perhaps in the future Tortuga's press materials should include the quote:

"Tortuga is the greatest rock band of all time--Deborah Jowitt, The Village Voice."

Jude Bond

Deborah Jowitt replies: Perhaps the sound waves, passing through the distortion and wah-wah pedals, generated an illusion of growly words, which I, fascinated, wrote down. I could have misheard musicians counting. Or maybe, Tortuga channeled Kurt Cobain's ghost. Apologies.

Freudian Slip

Your cover artwork for Mark Schoofs's "Freud in the Age of Prozac" [October 20] showing Prozac capsules stamped "10 mm" was clearly done by someone who has never seen a Prozac tablet. Drugs, as any dealer or pharmaceutical company can tell you, are measured in milligrams, not millimeters!

Maia Szalavitz

Pate 'N' Place

In Douglas Wolk's review of Chris Knox's show at Tonic ["Clowning Achievement," October 20], he notes

Knox's tendency to leap into the crowd and "molest" fans during songs, pointing out that "one unlucky bald gentleman got his head licked."

As the man in question, I must object.

First, to the adjective "unlucky." Fact is, I've had a tremendous run of good fortune since the show, and have refused to wash the top of my head because of it.

Second, I am no gentleman.

Chris Belden

Yul Spirit

What's with all the bald guys on the cover lately ["Larry Kramer's Big Bet," August 25; "Angel With a Dirty Mind: Talking 'Filth' With Irvine Welsh," September 15; "Freud in the Age of Prozac," October 20]?

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