Stuart Vincent
Communications Manager,
Melville, New York

Straight cop-out

Re Patrick Moore's "We Are Not OK" [The Queer Issue, June 22-28]: Yes, it is sad indeed that the gay community is bent on self-destruction based on its own self-loathing. But I do not think this can be entirely blamed on the straight community. We need to take responsibility for our own actions as adults. No one is forcing us to snort coke or shoot up. That is an individual's personal choice. Plus, I believe that kind of attitude is a total cop-out. Learning to love ourselves and our community is the most important thing that we can do in the face of the hatred that is currently being directed toward the queer community.

Not to mention, this kind of behavior really does make the queer community look depraved to these evangelicals. If we want equal rights then we need realize that the hypocritical dominant people in power are not going to just hand it to us.

Kim Gray
Durham, North Carolina

Trauma exhibition

Patrick Moore has done an excellent job writing about the crystal meth crisis. True, marriage won't solve all emotional and mental health issues for the gay community as it evidently has not done for the non-gay folks. That does not mean that gay marriage should go out of focus as a rights agitator. Do gay people need the additional stress of not being able to marry if they are already psychologically burdened? Denial of marital rights is just another way of traumatizing this community. Crystal meth or HIV are only the manifestations of several such traumas.

Devyani Prabhat
Jersey City, New Jersey

Right is wrong

Stop implying that all gay people use drugs. This is both untrue and plays right into the hands of our right-wing detractors. There are lots of gay people out there who do not use drugs. Many have partners, homes, and children. Substance abuse may be a greater problem among gays than straights (though that can't be proven since there are no reliable statistics on the number of gay people, and do you include MSM?) I've been out for about 30 years, and the vast majority of gay people I've known have not had drug or drinking problems. Don't make us sound like we are all exactly what the right portrays us to be.

Robert La Mont
Arlington, Virginia

In custardy: Kopps

Re "Happy Days" by Robert Sietsema [Counter Culture, June 22-28]: I hate to quibble but Leon's was not the inspiration for Arnold's in Happy Days. The creators of the show were from the North Shore and drew their inspiration from Kopps (this is an essential part of Milwaukee lore). In my humble opinion, not only does Kopps' custard equal Leon's, but they have the best (real) burgers in town.

Tim Strane
Whitefish Bay, Wisconsin

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