Reassuringly, nor can Robbins cite an example of any decision being affected by racial or parochial prejudice.

Robert Calvin Adelman
Upper West Side

Tom Robbins replies: Two decisions, both cited in my article, underscore the argument that Pataki's imported appellate judges from upstate and Long Island are out of "sync" with the people for whom they adjudicate: moving the Amadou Diallo trial out of town and the denial of the Campaign for Fiscal Equity's lawsuit to increase state funding for city schools (later overturned by the Court of Appeals).

The unnameable

"My Flood of Tears" by Anya Kamenetz [September 7–13] makes me think of author Anne Lamott's writing. It's the first piece, other than the interview with Mayor Ray Nagin for The New York Times, that makes the reader feel the unnameable beneath the Katrina crisis.

Roberta Fineberg
Upper East Side

Funeral rights

Re Nick Sylvester's Riff Raff entry "Impromptu NYC New Orleans Jazz Funeral Forgets to Mourn New Orleans" [villagevoice.com, September 12]: The Bush regime charscalex100 is responsible for mass murder by criminal neglect in the Gulf Coast. It is exactly appropriate, while mourning, to hold it responsible for this needless death and suffering.

Sylvester attempts to dismiss the tremendous outpouring of more than 80 musicians, many extraordinary professional horn players, and several hundred mourners as a "collection of idiot assholes." Back in the real world, millions are contemplating the role that race and national oppression have played in this country. This is as it should be! And it is as it should be that people talk about the particular role of the Bush regime and its behavior toward black people. It is exactly relevant that this regime came to power illegitimately in the first place—through the disenfranchisement of black voters. It is exactly relevant that many in the administration or influential supporters of it are racist.

Sylvester feigns concern for the victims of Katrina and then displaces blame onto those who are taking responsibility through resistance. It is absurd and devious to suggest that our funeral procession has denied a respectful burial to the victims.

Again, Sylvester ridicules and blames the organizers for the fact that the NYPD brought out an extraordinary show of repression: paddy wagons, dozens of cops in helmets, grips and grips of plastic "riot cuffs," "terrorist squad" types, and a repeated threat to arrest everyone present. If he doesn't find that reprehensible, if he doesn't direct his scorn toward that injustice, then it doesn't matter how cynically sophisticated he tries to sound, he is just an apologist for the repression here and the repression down in New Orleans.

Sunsara Taylor
World Can't Wait—Drive Out the Bush Regime


In the preview of the New York Film Festival ["See It Now," September 14–20], the capsule review of Gabrielle was misattributed. It was written by Dennis Lim.

In "Mike's Awkward Ally" by Tom Robbins [September 14–20], a patient at the Atlanta Center for Social Therapy who complained of being recruited into Independence Party politics was incorrectly referred to as being a patient of Erika Van Meir's. The patient was a client of the center.

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