by Inlander Staff
The No-Meat Movement -- It does my heart good to read letters like Leslie Curran's "Dead Meat" and Norman A Oss II's "We're the Pigs" in The Inlander. It's good to know there are people like that in the world. People who respect animals enough to stop eating them may be in the minority, but every social movement has to begin somewhere.

Kerry Masters

Liberty Lake, Wash.

Making Wind -- If there was question over the imbalance of The Inlander's endorsement for Mayor ("Go West," 10/23/03), the absence of any dissenting opinions in the following article ("Fresh Faces," 10/30/03), with the space instead used to reiterate your endorsements, removed all doubt.

Congratulations to The Inlander for getting the ticket you selected. You are either gifted at discerning which way the political wind blows, or are creating that wind.

James Jarvis

Spokane, Wash.

Neighbors Snubbed -- I am not angry, but am I upset with the way things are being handled among the Northwest Neighborhood Association, the Spokane Parks and Recreation Department, Bobby Brett of Brett Sports and Spokane Youth Sports Association regarding Joe Albi Stadium? Yes.

To clarify the article, "Stadium Shuffle" (10/30/03), I have held my position as development chair on the Northwest Neighborhood Association, since June. I have attended meetings as the chair since July. NW Neighborhood Association President Dick Carson made no mention of the letter he wrote to the city in support for the south development of Joe Albi Stadium at these meetings. I am listed as Development Committee Chair in the letterhead of the letter Carson wrote to the city. This also means that I am a member of the board. A board meeting was held on September 10 (which I attended) right before the public meeting that evening with the Parks Department. Carson's letter was not mentioned at this meeting either.

The Parks Department did not clarify that the vote taken the night of Sept. 10 was only an "advisory vote." The neighborhoods surrounding Joe Albi Stadium are a stakeholder in this issue! The stadium lies in their backyards! If Joe Albi Stadium was in the backyards of Dick Carson, Bobby Brett, members of the Park Department and others pushing the stadium development, they too might think differently!

Bonnie Olson

Spokane, Wash.

Illusion of Self-Rule -- Hello, world. This is America speaking. The beautiful, you know. I have something under my sleeve for you, world. It's called democracy. Yes, you heard it right, democracy. It's not as bad as you think it is. Let me explain.

The more you try democracy, the more you will like it. The reason it works is because it makes people think that they have power. Yes, you heard that right. In a democracy, the people keep getting told that they have the power, but they don't. So who has it? Rich politicians, together with super-rich big business and special interest groups. But it's easy to goose-step around those groups -- trust me, I know.

Let your people say anything they want -- that way, they will think they have power. They can say the President is dumb and a liar, or that the UFOs are coming, or anything in between.

It is important that you do not adjust the name to your liking. Theocracy is not the same as democracy. "Bigbizocracy" is not gonna fly. Neither will "Richclassycracy." Don't even try "Allahcracy."

Oh, yes, I know about the groups of people who are being discriminated against in my beautiful land. It's not the same thing as with blacks in the past. I'm sure you have gays, lesbians and other deviates of your own in your neighborhoods as well. People are not exactly equal, but you cannot say that out loud. Just sweep it under the rug. Yes, that's right. When they step on your toe or find out you discriminate a little, sweep it under the rug of democracy.

So, what do you say, world? When you try it once you'll never go back.

Jonathan Rafalski

Spokane, Wash.

Mr. Bus Driver -- For 12 years I have supported mass/alternative transportation in eight to 10 counties. It lends itself toward sustainability instead of consumerism. With vision, it could improve the quality of life for all the community. It cuts down on traffic, allowing people to get home for more family time. Public transport reduces pollution and wear and tear on the roads, saving the taxpayer money. However, there is a cankerous attitude that has eaten its way into our tax-dollar-supported public services and in particular the STA bus system and bus operators/drivers. We have a system supported by corrupt unions that provide protection from accountability, excuses for failure and the means to retaliate against us.

In Spokane, many drivers see the bus riders not as adults and human beings, but as people for them to dominate, control and manipulate as second-class citizens. In a consumerist culture that throws away our belief that all people are created equal, these bus operators perceive our worth based on material status (owning a car), as do many in the community. If a bus driver acts discourteous, rude, controlling or invasive of personal information and we politely approach them to voice concern, we are "beaten down," put back in our place, have security called on us, denied access and/or evicted from a bus. Why support such a system?

Steve Baldwin

Spokane, Wash.

Loving Luther -- The film Luther is one of the best films we have seen in years! It's an amazing portrayal of an amazing man in an amazing era. I have gone three times, taking four different people and many others. Every one of them loved it!! I have never gone three times to see any movie, and I would go again. Many of our friends throughout the U.S. also had the same reaction -- they loved it. The story is accurate; explaining the horrors of what one innocent human being went through because of his love for his church and Jesus Christ. The costumes and scenery magically portrayed the Europe of that era, not to mention incredible acting throughout, highlighting Peter Ustinov as the Saxon protector of Luther. Having been filmed in Germany, Czech Republic and Italy, the scenes and castles were overwhelmingly imposing, as in real life.

We lived in Europe. Marty Demarest blew his critique (capsule review, 9/25/03) on this big time. Could it be he despised the man, Luther, or his message? Nothing else makes sense.

Barbara Miller

Spokane, Wash.

Back-Patting -- Congratulations to the McGregor family on your 10 years of publishing The Inlander. It takes a great deal of creativity, work and effort to start a new business in any sector of the market.

The leadership at the helm of The Inlander has forged a relationship with readers across the Inland Empire from their offices in downtown Spokane, and continues to strengthen their position as the alternative news and information source.

The Hagadone Corporation is proud to be the printer for The Inlander. We are sure that all of you will continue to build on the success you have enjoyed in your first 10 years.

Duane B. Hagadone

Coeur d'Alene, Idaho

The Truth Hurts -- In response to Quotes and Notes' "Reality TV," (11/6/03), I don't know when it became OK for TV news to show someone getting shot, but a more important question would be when did it become wrong to show such things?

Murder and attempted murder are realities in America. Why does seeing it offend you? Perhaps you're afraid that someone might get the idea that people kill people and not guns? Maybe potential jurors in this case might see it and impose the death penalty if selected to serve? Maybe people might see the footage and decide to replace their small-caliber handguns with ones that have more stopping power? And this offends you?

Perhaps you are just unhappy that footage like this diverts attention away from important issues like "did the taxpayers foot the bill for the signs on the aircraft carrier that President Bush landed on?"

I'd say that the lack of footage like this on TV news is causing you to draw the wrong conclusions. The article refers to "the crazy video of a guy shooting an attorney." Get real! The video is not crazy at all. The guy shooting at the attorney is the crazy one. You are offended about seeing the footage on the news when you should be offended by the fact that this guy is actually trying to kill somebody! People like that do not deserve walk around free. They deserve a swift kick in the ass on the way to the death chamber.

I'll take my reality straight up, thank you very much. I do not want or need the Dan Rathers of the world cleaning it up and dumbing it down for me. Maybe I'll reconsider my position on stem cell research so that some scientist could grow you sensitive types a backbone. Naw, you wouldn't know what to do with it anyway.

Bill Cotten

Spokane, Wash.

Authentic Voice -- I discovered your free Inlander 10-Year Anniversary edition the other day, and once I began to review it, I could not put it down. I read it from cover to cover. I found it to be an excellent resource, in addition to being an alternative distinguished research and information guide. In this competitive world of publishing, especially post 9/11; I realize that advertisers are hard to come by, and it is rare to survive with a publication such as yours for 10 years.

Being an environmental reporter myself, I found your information on the surrounding environment to be especially enlightening. As I recently moved to Spokane, I was delighted to find it to be a lovely and interesting city, with beautiful attractions only a short distance away. Coming from a small town, I have discovered all of the activities available here to be exciting and new.

I do not wish to be in any way disrespectful about your magazine; however, I did note that the writer, a Ms. Jane Fritz, had previously written two other articles, one regarding Chief Joseph (Nez Perce Nation) and the other, Trail of Tears (Tsalagi Nation).

Perhaps it would be more appropriate if Native peoples were allowed the opportunity to tell their own stories with their own words? There are many freelance Native writers who would embrace the opportunity to do their own storytelling, a cultural tradition among the Native nations in this country. Perhaps, in future editions, you might be more sensitive about this issue. An excellent place to recruit Native writers would be the Wordcraft Circle of Native Writers and Storytellers, an extensive institution of knowledgeable Indigenous writers.

Terri Crawford Currie

(Tsalagi/Winnebago Nations)

Spokane Valley, Wash.

Journalist, News from Indian Country

Uranium Dispute -- In her letter "Depleted Uranium: WMD," (11/06/03), Jennifer Kearne makes some good points. She also implies that I was defending the use of depleted uranium as a weapon. That is not the case at all. She also mentions my name twice in her letter, even though she did not address any of the points I actually made in my own.

I did not dispute that depleted uranium weapons are nasty, or even whether they should be banned. I did not even mention those things. Nor did I dispute that they can make people ill.

What I disputed were claims made in several newspapers that they are "highly" radioactive and cause severe radiation burns. They are not and they do not.

All that aside, my main point was that it disturbs me when I read articles about important issues, from both national and local sources, that make claims based on bad science, or no science at all.

Lonny Eachus

Spokane, Wash.

Publication date: 11/13/03

Grand Coulee Dam Laser Light Show @ Grand Coulee Dam Visitor Center

Through Sept. 30
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