By Alex Distefano
By Scott Snowden
By Anna Merlan
By Steve Almond
By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
Re Annie Fischer's 'Let's All Get Drunk Together' [August 1521]: So, in order to preserve the character of New York's creative community, all we needed to do was stabilize rents and designate certain areas as condo-and land-speculation-free zones? Wowyou know, I could have told you that 20 years ago! I could have captured the attention of Mayor Koch with my bad hair-weave and my entry-level publishing job and turned everything around! You mean all I had to do was use that transformation spell and become a cute white grad student with a killer thesis and a book contract? Damn, another opportunity missedI could have saved us all!
Ariel Cinii Manhattan
Thank you, Nat Hentoff, for writing 'Darfur Betrayed' [August 15-21]. Articles about the genocide that's taking place in Sudan by writers on the left have been late and relatively rare. The left licks Islamic ass. You are an exception, Hentoff, and you deserve our admiration.
George Jochnowitz Manhattan
As a Cohort 10 New York City Teaching Fellow, I am disappointed with the extremely negative view that Stacy Cowley and Neil deMause's 'Your Own Personal Blackboard Jungle' [August 17] has shown of the Teaching Fellows program. The entire point of the program is to fill high-need positions in New York City's schools. These are the positions that "properly" trained teachers do not want. I joined the Teaching Fellows because I wanted to become a teacher. I did not have a teaching degree, and all I wanted to do was teach. Yes, there are horror stories with any situation, and yes, the Teaching Fellowship doesn't have the same exact initial training as a classic teacher-preparation program, but after the required amount of service is completed, all Fellows have a master's degree in education and at least two years of full-time, regularly appointed teaching experiencesomething that almost no one graduating from a classic teacher-preparation program can claim. At the end of the two- or three-year period, Fellows are much better teachers than a first-year teacher with "classic" training. Anyone can complain about a program, and anyone can point a finger and say what everyone else is doing wronga truly effective citizen looks to his/her own effectiveness, fixes that first, and then tries to help fix the other problems. The benefits of this program greatly outweigh its problems, so please be sure that we get some voices from the other side of the argument.
Christopher Moll West Harrison, New York
BOARD OF DREAD
Re Maria Luisa Tucker's 'Out for Teacher' [August 1521]: This is the perfect opportunity to continue this exposé of the idiosyncrasies of the NYC Board of Educationnext up can be that brave principal of the Brooklyn school forced out by the old-time socio-Zionist Jews that still dominate the Department of Education. The one role-model local Muslim that girls had in the school systema modest, educated, successful womanwas forced out of office over two words. I know the Voice has always struggled to support the Palestinians in city with so many leftist-on-everything-but-Israel Jews, but this isn't about the occupation; it's about education, stupid.
Erik F. Manhattan
THE ALTERNATIVE IS WEAKLY
It's truly unfortunate that the Voice's sad pleaswhich begin each week's letters pagefor quality writers to replace its decimated staff have failed to produce results. Love 'em or hate 'em, knowledgeable critics like Robert Christgau being replaced by hacks like D. Shawn Bosler (does the D. stand for "Dipshit"?) continues to mark the free fall of a once-respected publication. Bosler's shockingly uninformed and dismissive preview of Crowded House's upcoming shows at the Beacon Theater [Music Listings, August 814] rushed headlong past the line of critical opinion into the realm of shameful ignorance. While there will no doubt be those in attendance who will actually enjoy the band's "saccharine-saturated anxiety-inducers," the majority of the audience will be familiar with their five critically acclaimed studio albums, as well as their reputation for outstanding live performances.
Royce Farrell Manhattan
MO' BETTER NEWS
Re Wayne Barrett's 'Rudy Giuliani's Five Big Lies About 9/11' [August 814]: This is The Village Voicemy elders used to read and now lament. This is what you need more ofnow don't fuck it up and fire him.
Shahryar Motia Brooklyn
Hats off to Barrett et al. for the detailed exposé of Giuliani's 9/11 lies. Readers should send a link to this piece to all their family and friends across America. It goes beyond hypocrisy to see Giuliani running in an election on a 9/11 platform when the first thing he did in response to the attack was to try to postpone the city's elections so that he could remain in office beyond the mandated term limit. And he says the terrorists hate us because we are free? Judging by his actions, Giuliani is clearly against democracy.
Eliot Camaren Manhattan
WILD (FIFTY-)DEUCE CHASE
As editors of the largest weekly paper in the U.S., you must wonder what weight your weekly picks have with readers. It would be a smart experiment, you might think, to put the wrong address on an event, an address out of place enough that it would be easy to identify exactly who was arriving because they read the Voicesay sending B-52 fans to Wingate Field, normally host to an R concert series, as you did in Voice Choices [August 814]. Who's to say the folks exercising on the track weren't warming up for the concert, but I got the sense that my friend and I were the only ones expecting to hear Rock Lobster. After a quick Internet search, we discovered the concert was at Coney Island and managed to catch the very end (and fortuitously the latter half of Daft Punk as well), but our experience offers an answer to your question, should you ever wonder. Of the hundreds of thousands of folk who read the Village Voice, two of us, two, actually chose on a whim to follow your suggestion. I don't know for whom that speaks worse. If I wanted a tour of Brooklyn, I would have scheduled it on Sunday and brought the kids for a picnic.
Aaron Scott Manhattan
In Rob Harvilla's article on the Police at Madison Square Garden 'Night of the Exuberant Chuckleheads' August 814], who is Stuart Copeland? I was at the Garden and the man behind the kit looked a helluva lot like Stewart Copeland. At least Harvilla didn't confuse Sting for Steeng.
Matt Kaslow Brooklyn