Letters for May 4-10, 2006
The Waldman Disguise
Time for the tell-all, Jim: You have pinpointed things here that should give a lot of people pause ("If Waldman's a Dem, What's With the GOP Cash?" Bob Norman, March 30). Lots of explanations are needed from this man before any real Democrat shells out money to him.
West Palm Beach
Uncook That Goose
Protein comes in the color green: Chicago has shown more class than other cities, and it's about damned time ("Honk If You Love Foie Gras," Gail Shepherd, April 27). Mayor Daley can mutter all he wants about what he thinks is the lack of priorities, but one has to start somewhere.
By eating foie gras, beef, pork, veal, chicken, etc., one is, in effect, turning a deaf ear and blind eye to the suffering animals endure in the process that brings them to your plate. Just maybe by becoming a more humane and kindly society, where our palates are concerned, we will set a good example for our children in treating members of other species with the compassion and respect they deserve. And that attitude just might transfer itself to our own species as well. Violence begets violence. Contrary to popular belief, humans did not start out being carnivores! There is plenty of protein elsewhere.
Bronxville, New York
Torturing the helpless is not art: Gail Shepherd writes that if foie gras were banned, chefs "would be legally prohibited from using an ingredient that has informed and transformed their art for decades." This type of macabre animal cruelty used to fill the gullets of rich egoists is not art.
If these chefs were the "geniuses" that they claim to be, they would lose the cruelty and actually learn to cook the millions of artful, humane, and ethical foods available. Animal abuse is not art.
American freedom of expression is even more heroic: United 93 is a wonderful portrait of courage ("Fear of Flying," Robert Wilonsky, April 27). But in the context of America's current foreign policy, it comes off as a familiar bit of wound-licking. Every nation has a tale of the day the world did them dirt, and United 93 is America's. But what's more remarkable is that, when people abroad see the Michael Moore movie Fahrenheit 9/11, viewers are surprised that a person is allowed to do that in America, allowed to be so critical of a sitting president. An unintended effect, because by being so harsh, the movie ends up giving every American something to be proud of, proving to the world that America is still somewhat free.
Bush gave up trying to capture Bin Laden years ago. We're safe only because even angry people still admire something about this place. Hope it stays that way, don't you?
Via the Internet
It's About Beemers
Deconstructing the shit Ross keeps talkin': "745 white on white, that's fuckin Ross" I don't think that is a cocaine reference ("King of Coke?" Mosi Reeves, April 27). I have always thought it was about BMW 745. You know, the seven series. And white on white is the color of the car and the color of the rims, as a black car with black rims would be stated as "black on black." The song, "Hustlin'," is about coke, women, money, and cars not just selling coke. I'm not saying I'm right, but that was obvious to me. Also, I do not think that when he says they "snatch black" that he is referring to Noriega or Escobar.
Next, the Rick Ross PhD thesis: Excellent job on the Ross piece. I laughed out loud. The only issue I have with the article (really a nonissue) is that I always thought he was talking about rappers Noriega and new Def Jam artist Nas (Escobar) in his song. I never realized he was referencing the actual persons, if that makes any sense. Nice job of clearing that up for us.
Via the Internet
Staff Writer Trevor Aaronson has been named a finalist in the prestigious Livingston Awards for Young Journalists, which is administered by the University of Michigan and recognizes the finest local, national, and international reporting by American journalists under age 35. Aaronson was selected for a series of stories he wrote last year exposing problems in Hollywood's Police Department. Also last week, New Times columnist Bob Norman won first place for local government reporting in the Society of Professional Journalists' Sunshine State Awards for "Cash Cow," his investigation of questionable government contracts in Southwest Ranches. Other New Times winners included Wyatt Olson, who took home a second-place award in education reporting for "The Littlest Felons" and a third place in criminal law reporting for "Cybercreep." Art Director Pam Shavalier won a second-place award for her photo illustration "Learning Curves."
In last week's feature about gangs in Lake Worth, "Bangin' in L-Dub," writer Jeff Stratton drew a distinction between a newer, cooperative policing style used by Lake Worth Police Department Officer Brian Hermanson and more traditional methods, typified by SWAT commander Lt. Pete Ebel. However, in characterizing Ebel, Stratton described him as "clearly not averse to the use of force," referring to Ebel's certification as an instructor in the use of force and his extensive training in the use of weapons. This was a poor choice of words, since it may have produced the (unintended) impression that Ebel advocates an unnecessary use of force in police situations. That was not Stratton's aim.
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