By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
By Roy Edroso
By Jon Campbell
By Albert Samaha
By Zachary D. Roberts
Letter of the Week
Brave and funny
Good heavens, I am so deeply, deeply inspired by The Village Voice's coverage of the convention protests [September 17]. Bravo to you all. And bravo to all the fine, fine folk of New York City! Patriots of truth! You all are so brave. And funny! I feel so proud to be an American, way down here in rural Kentucky.
This is just to say that many of usthough as of yet untelevised, unrecognized, and unorganizedare right beside you all in this good fight. We of the heartland are with you on the front line. So much is at stake! Land, water, mountaintops, our communities, our souls. Truth to power, hurry! Hurrah!
I've always enjoyed Ward Sutton's work in the Voice, but his coverage of the Republican love-in was probably the best, most concise convention coverage I saw anywhere [August 31September 3, villagevoice.com]. It's amazing how much accurate outrage this guy can get into a single panel (though I would have liked more on that freak Zell Miller).
Bush to NYC: Drop dead
Chanel Lee's "New Yorkers to Bush: Listen Up!" [September 17] contained statements by everyday people who would point out what was wrong, problematic, or being ignored in their communities. These people need to know something: Bush and his Republican confederates don't care. I live in a "red" town in a "blue" state (California) and hear what my Republican acquaintances have to say about these things. Their attitude collectively is that these problems exist because the denizens of those communities deserve it. They, the denizens, won't work and expect the government to "hand them everything." In other words, people, they say it's your own fault that there are these problems. That's the mantra, folks. New Yorkers should just send in their taxes so they can be redistributed to Wyoming (red state).
Chauffeur, so good
Tom Robbins and Jennifer Gonnerman's "Streets of Rage" [September 17] was an interesting account of how bikers took over the streets of New York during the Republican National Convention. Some riders blocked off traffic, "corking" so that the main group of riders could run red lights. After all, the streets belong to bikers. In Mississippi, we have something called "flattening." This is what happens to bikers who engage in "corking." I would have thought that New York cabbies would practice "flattening" too. Were there just French cabdrivers out that day?
Iran: So far away
When I initially glanced at Michael Atkinson's review of the Iranian film masterpiecesHamoun andThe Cow [Scanners, September 17], I thought, Wow, what a cool dude to shed some light on these stellar releases.
Then I actually read the piece. Hey, if you decide to posit yourself as a culturally enlightened obscure-film connoisseur, then at least get your facts straight: "Still leads the Arab pack"?
That's completely insulting and embarrassing. Iranians and Arabs are two independent peoples and cultures. I believe the Voice needs to make this mistake public. And apologize, at that.
Michael Atkinson responds: I was absentmindedly thinking in terms of what the U.N. calls "the Arab region," but you're right, it was a stupid generalization. What's precisely "insulting" about it, I'm not so sure, unless you're an Iranian who hates Arabs.
Very concise and thorough reportingit's much appreciated. As an absentee voter based in Ireland, I am about to post my vote. While my body may be elsewhere, my mind will always be concerned with the quality of our congressional representative.
I believe in looking at the track record of each candidate before I vote, and this article helped focus on just that!
One last butt letter
Re Sloane Crosley's "Butt Seriously" [The Essay, August 1117]:Finally someone said it. I am white and I have a very nice, perfectly curved bubble butt that I am proud of. And my boyfriend is too. I believe it to be one of my assets. But we're not alone. I know tons of girls who get that frequently asked question, "Are you mixed?" just because they have a round one. Maybe evolution is making us more alike. I know I've seen plenty of Nubian queens who have a lack in the back.
Re "Trumpets No End" [August 1824]: Francis Davis boils all of today's trumpeters down to how they're perceived in terms of "two varieties, Wyntons and Daves." He states, "With Wynton Marsalis and Dave Douglas at their peaks, there's not much room at the top."
He then suggests that Wallace Roney is a "Dave," Brian Lynch is a "Wynton," and Ron Horton is a "Dave," because "the current scheme allows for only one brainy white guy, and Douglas has that part sewn up."
Is this for real? This is ignorance supreme. If you're trying to correct a perception problem, don't state the perception as if it were fact. And whose perception is this anyway? The level of gross categorization here would be laughable if it weren't so insulting. Insulting to trumpeters like Roy Campbell, Greg Kelley, Wadada Leo Smith, and Axel Dörner, who are trying to make a living by breaking boundaries.