FCC Won't Let Me Be -- As a response to Richard Gower's letter, "Radio No Longer Rocks" (6/05/03), and recent proposed FCC legislation that shares creepy close quarters with the homogenization of radio, I would like to urge Gower and others not to abandon hope. Radio may eventually serve its original purpose, as entertainment -- and perhaps, act as a conduit for free thinking -- rather than a platform for the commercialization of media.
Clear Channel drafted a list of some R & amp;R favorites that contained "objectionable" lyrics after the World Trade Center attack. AC/DC's "Highway to Hell" and Steve Miller's "Jet Airliner" raised the brows of a corporate mogul somewhere in Texas. The chances of actually influencing the DJs working for the 11,170 stations nationwide that uphold banned lists under the Clear Channel cloak are virtually impossible. The FCC had proposed legislation that would grant Clear Channel the privilege of extending these "objectionable" content lists to television and newspapers, too. Fortunately, the legislation didn't pass.
What do I suggest as a ray of hope for disappointed listeners? Spokane has community radio in the works, with 70 percent locally produced programming and no commercials. Better yet, you could get your own radio program on Thin Air Radio and play the music you want to hear. They're your airwaves, after all! The FCC is a public, tax-paid endeavor. Take back the media, and make it a paean to the virtues of the Spokane community. Get out your Sabbath records and visit the Thin Air Radio Web site at www.thinairradio.org.
My Body, My Business -- Recently, anti-choice members of Congress voted to pass legislation banning the so-called "partial-birth abortion" procedure. President Bush has vowed to sign this bill. This will be the first time the federal government has banned an abortion procedure since the Roe v. Wade decision.
As a woman, I am shocked and appalled by this legislation. In 2001, approximately 600 dilation and extraction (D & amp;X) procedures were performed in the third trimester -- all in cases of severe fetal abnormalities or danger to the health or life of the mother. It is not the government's job to place personal morality above public health, in any situation.
American women take the right to control their uteruses for granted. Republicans (and the right-wing, anti-choice groups with Moral Majority agendas that fund them) are attempting to limit abortion rights, which is tantamount to legislating that the potential of a fetus is more important than the health and life of a woman.
At what point does one woman's body become the nation's body? Abortion, during any trimester, is a personal, moral decision. This politically driven, unconstitutional ban should be struck down.
Can't Get No Education -- Education regurgitation is all we're fed. Today's sacred cow is tomorrow's hamburger, and say -- isn't that your kid serving one up now? I thought she graduated from college. It's as if we have 40 years to prepare for our livelihoods. For those who aren't inclined toward college, we need vo-tech schools so graduates are ready to enter the market at livable wages.
As for college, it's unfathomable why a bachelor's degree won't mean anything other than a ticket to grad school. What a racket! By the time someone's 22, he should be able to fend for himself, especially if he's earned a meaningful degree.
The most daunting abyss in education is in liberal arts, those tools by which we learn to think critically and constructively. How is this republic to continue with voters who are satisfied with the likes of Bush and Cheney?
Your kids know more about dope and TV shows than they do about history and their political system.
Spokane needs to get its head out and its eyes open. Instead of throwing good money after bad, we should be raising vo-tech campuses. We must stop babying our kids and require serious learning.
India, not the U.S., leads in technical education. Germany considers our secondary education more akin to baby-sitting. And you know, when faced with grinding poverty, no amount of feel-good slop is going to help. Education is the ticket out of misery.
Liberal arts should be mastered by high school, and colleges should be pinnacles of advanced studies, not glorified high schools. Every student should have some skill to fall back on while looking for a better or professional career. If we don't push for our kids now, there are grads from the Asian rim and Eastern Europe to fill every position available tomorrow.
Preserve This! -- As a modern American dolt whose existence is coercively devoted to being safe from harm, I was so very pleased... no, tickled... to read that the nanny state is now ticketing boaters who fail to don a personal floatation device.
In fact, so dizzy with joy was I once the "Click it or Ticket" program was implemented that when driving alone in my Cadillac, I strap myself with both driver and passenger seatbelts for double the safety. I do so out of a determined hope that a uniform nanny...er, police officer...will pull me over nonetheless and give me some freshly wrapped candy and perhaps a balloon for being such a good boy.
I think I'll just start wearing a life preserver wherever I happen to travel, whether by land or by sea. Obviously, all of us are eventually going to need something to keep our bods afloat in this torpid sea of state-imposed B.S.