Letters for March 10-16, 2005
My daddy done told me...: In connection with her February 24 story "Rock the Vote," Deirdra Funcheon spoke with my dad regarding my involvement in the Lake Worth mayoral race. He mentioned something about not supporting my efforts because I would try to make people live in trees, "the way it was before Christ" or something like that. I wanted to clarify a couple of things about that:
First, I'm not trying to make people live any particular way. I support education and setting an example as the best ways to create lasting social change. I think people should use creative, direct action to defend their communities and bring attention to important issues, but that is a far cry from imposing some sort of eco-fascism. Noncoercion is a basic tenet of anarchist philosophy. (Although I do think living in trees is a great idea for those who may live outside by choice or circumstance -- I've found that the higher you get off the ground, the less the mosquitoes mess with you.)
Second, there is the "before Christ" thing. I think I've had this conversation with my pops a couple of times before. What he was probably trying to get at is the "beyond civilization" idea that I have pitched to him, but civilization began around 10,000 years before Christ, and there are people who have been living outside of it all along (arguably the vast majority of the world's population lives just barely clinging to its fringes). This is a hard thing for some folks, such as my dad, to swallow -- but it's pretty crucial that we start looking at the whole civilization and its devastating results. For a good intro to the subject, check out books by Jared Diamond, Daniel Quinn (both "best-selling" authors, for what it's worth), Chellis Glenndinning, Ward Churchill, or Derrick Jensen, to name a few.
Last, my dad hasn't lived in Greece for a long time (he left sometime right before social movements overthrew the CIA-imposed military dictatorship in the '70s), but if he were still there today, he might have a better idea of what I'm talking about. The anarchist movement in Greece today has been one of the stronger forces in the grassroots fight against corporate globalization and U.S. imperialism.
Oh, and thanks to everyone who encouraged my mayoral endeavors and who is trying to get involved in his or her community. We might be on the verge of this planet's largest social/ecological collapses, and it could get messy. Now is a good time to start paying attention. You can get in touch with some local grassroots activist groups at 561-547-6686.
Panagioti E. Tsolkas
Shepherding the epicurean truth: Gail Shepherd's wonderful January 27 write-up about our restaurant, A La Turca ("Talking Turkey") not only did a great thing for us but it also showed how much she appreciates Turkish food and people.
I would like to thank her a million times.
The Donald Is Livid
At such disrespect: I loved the last line of Bob Norman's January 13 article, "Geller's Giveaway": "And if they don't care, they'll get precisely what they deserve, which, in this case, will surely be more of the same."
Are we going crazy? Is it possible that the only real important issue in America is who will be the next Apprentice?
Via the Internet
Military New Times of Day
An honest, upstanding periodical: Your newspaper did a nice job on the "Phantom Punch" Tailpipe item (January 13). It was fair and balanced. And happens also to be true. Congrats. Sorry for the skepticism.
Marine Lt. Col. Frederick Peterson
Via the Internet
A Kurd of Truth
In his backward response: This is my reply to "The Deadliest Day" by Eric Alan Barton (December 30): Ninety percent of Iraq is prosperous and safe. Everything else is all "quagmire" bullshit. This is war, and people get hurt. If you're not ready to get shot at, don't join the military. And there are enough troops there to finish the job. All that's missing is the political will. For all his hard-ass, cowboy swagger, George W. Bush still hasn't pulled the trigger.
What's more, "Arab street opinion" is just fundamentalist crapola. Why should we give a flying jump about people who already hate us? Here's a solution: Let the Kurdish pesh merga take over. Inside of a year, Iraq will look like what the rest of that backward region could become.
The March 3 Night Court column incorrectly reported that Karma Lounge had closed and been sold. The nightclub is still open for business from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays while a deal is being worked out, owner Mario Di Leo says. We regret the error. For information on Karma's events this weekend, see the club's listing on page 70.
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