Rock City Rocks! -- I just read Sheri Young's letter, "Chevy's Rumors" (10/9/03), addressing the move of Chevy's out of River Park Square (RPS). As a former opponent of the RPS deal, I too was eager to assign a "conspiracy" theory to anything the Cowles family has its hand in. However, the move of Rock City Grill to RPS is sound business for all of Spokane. Yes, it serves the interest of RPS to have a viable restaurant as one of its primary food-service anchors. Rock City is just that -- an anchor. It's had solid performance since it has opened its doors, even while being threatened by the Cucina Cucina legal team.
Local is better. Jim Rhoades has a long-standing history with Spokane dating back to Patsy Clark's Mansion and later. Rock City rocks and will double its staff size while keeping all profits within our local community, not sending them out to some corporate headquarters in Seattle or elsewhere.
It's time we allow RPS and other local businesses to do what they do best -- create a wonderful, value-added experience to our Inland Northwest lifestyle. Quit belly-achin' about the fact it isn't from Seattle. If you want Seattle, then go there.
Brendon K. Hill
Bad Inlander, Bad! -- Using The Inlander's logic in its mayoral endorsement ("Go West," 10/23/03), IBM should have led the PC revolution because nobody was more experienced or more capable, not a Harvard dropout and Silicon Valley garage duo. For an entrepreneurial startup that defied the odds and took on a multigenerational stranglehold on the local media, you sure are disdainful of Tom Grant.
Guess I should pick up the Spokesman-Review next Thursday. They've got more experience, more political power and more resources -- they must be the better paper.
Depleted Uranium: WMD -- In his letter "Censor This" (10/9/03), Lonny Eachus disputed the claims made in The Inlander's 9/25/03 article, "Censored!" regarding radioactive depleted uranium used in the Gulf War.
There is a large body of evidence about the damaging effects of weapons that use depleted uranium. It is my understanding that when the weapons explode, the particles emitted are extremely dangerous; many scientists believe that such particles are radioactive.
The incidence of birth defects in Iraq, believed by many to be related to depleted uranium, increased dramatically after the first Gulf War and continues to this day. Governments have been concerned enough about depleted uranium weaponry to pull soldiers out of areas where it is being used. Just last month, Inter Press Service reported elevated radiation levels in parts of Baghdad and related illnesses among U.S. troops.
A visit to several veterans' Web sites indicates that depleted uranium is a big issue. While I was living in England three years ago, several European governments acknowledged the dangers of depleted uranium and its effects on their troops in the first Gulf War; they began paying claims to their veterans for Gulf War Syndrome, or what's also known as "mystery illness."
I've read that of the approximately 500,000 U.S. soldiers who were stationed in the Gulf during the first Gulf War, more than 250,000 have since made claims to the Veterans Administration related to the syndrome.
The Uranium Medical Research Center has released a report regarding the use of non-depleted uranium in Afghanistan -- that is, full uranium. The study, prepared by an international team of scientists, found uranium levels in Afghan civilians in areas where the U.S. bombed during Operation Enduring Freedom to be as high as 20 times the levels in average populations.
Eachus states that the symptoms of radiation and heavy metal sickness are similar. This may be true, but with results as severe as they are in either case, use of depleted uranium weaponry is great cause for concern.
Crummy Commentaries -- The commentary pages of The Inlander are tiresome, predictable and unable to withstand even the slightest scrutiny. Is this really supposed to amount to an alternative view? The Inlander columns read like Time magazine on downers.
Robert Hen-hold is a fraud and not worth even skimming over. He hasn't the animus to speak his true socialist-fascist mind, so he parades past us with sly syllogisms of non sequiturs, all wrapped in inchoate prose that would flunk a first-year student of English.
Greg Cunningham's recent article, "Border War" (10/9/03), on amnesty for immigrants, is prototypical -- though at first I thought, "At last! A great spoof." Nothing he says is remotely factual.
Illegals do not add to our economy, they drain it. They do not add to the tax base, they drain it. They do not do jobs natives won't. They take away the entry-level jobs that young people once depended on, including agricultural work. Hospitals, schools, social services in every state, have been decimated by the wave of illegal immigrants. Under the banner of compassion, Cunningham advocates more of the same.
By advocating amnesty in the U.S., Cunningham supports a cynical ruling class in Mexico that exports the effects of its staggering corruption. Let's not help them. Instead, let's round up every one of the illegals, send them home, and let the revolution begin in Mexico. In 20 years, Mexico, rich in resources, might have a chance, and so would the children of the illegals. Anything else will simply be more of the same -- an experience sort of like reading the columns of The Inlander.
Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
Publication date: 11/06/03