It is also important to know that most children convicted under Senate Bill 440, contrary to popular belief, are not charged with horrific, high-profile crimes. I do hope your article helps to enlighten and inform more people about what is really going on with the system.
-- Billie Ross, Stone Mountain
Sock it to me
Just read the puppet feature in the Loaf ("Puppet masters," Dec. 18). It is nice to see this little "scene" get some deserved attention. They do innovative and truly entertaining work. No where else can you see such cool puppetcraft.
-- Andy Gish, Atlanta
I am writing to express my extreme disgust at the caption you used for the photo depicting the annual Morehouse-Spelman Christmas Concert (Talk of the Town, "Scene & Herd," Dec. 11). I believe it read: "The conductor, careful not to make too much suggestive eye contact, led the audience in singing 'The First Noel.'"
How absolutely classless of you to make such a statement. That concert is a time- honored tradition of both schools, and your commentary about the recent events at Morehouse College had no place in your coverage of the event. As an alumna of Spelman College and a strong and avid supporter of Morehouse College, I am appalled and disturbed that you would stoop to such a level to make such an inappropriate comment.
While I do believe in the First Amendment and free speech, I also believe that there is a time and a place for everything, and you exercised poor judgment in printing that caption. It would have been sufficient, and much more appropriate, to simply say, "The conductor leads the audience in singing 'The First Noel.'"
-- Rasheeda N. Creighton, Glen Allen, Va.
"I'm just scared to death of the federal government," she states, the mother of a man who just served 10 years for selling light bulbs in the era of the drug war ("Forgotten man," Dec. 4).
Scared to death of the federal government? Wow. Would someone (a law-abiding woman) have said that 50 years ago?
This drug war is so tragic. Steve Tucker is a POW of that war, now released. I say welcome home to him with all my heart.
We, as Americans, should never be afraid of our own government. That happens in "other" countries, not the USA. It's so sad. Again, welcome home to Steve Tucker.
-- Donna M. Paridee, New Baltimore, Mich.
The last straw
As an avid reader of CL, I would first like to congratulate you on having a (mostly) first-rate group of journalists on your staff, whose dedication to exposing the truth, informing the masses, and writing a thoroughly entertaining read is exactly the reason I practically salivate on Tuesday night in anticipation of the next issue's articles.
Of course, I must express my profound disappointment in the deliberately clueless and downright ass-backward indier-than-thou critics you employ in your music department. I have sat back for many issues now as thoroughly putrid, untalented bands/artists have been lauded as though they were on a par with the "greats" like the Beatles, etc. while truly deserving bands like S.L.A.M. are given either no notice at all or scathing reviews that merely gloss over the surface of their abilities (Vibes, "S.L.A.M. dancing," Dec. 4). I guess that if you want to be one of the critic's darling's at this paper, you have to forget how to tune your instrument, record on a shitty 4-track in the bathroom of the Earl, and not be able to sing on key if your life depended on it. As a die-hard fan of S.L.A.M. for the last couple of years, this article was the last straw.
First of all, comparing S.L.A.M. to Sevendust in any way other than being from the same hometown is absurd. Kevin Forest Moreau obviously does not have any education on the Atlanta scene, otherwise he would know that this would make S.L.A.M. part of the family tree of the Still Rain legacy. To merely brush this band off as "comfortingly familiar" and lacking in any individual sound just shows that this reviewer didn't do his homework on the band.
Mr. Moreau, you would be well served to put aside your biases and actually do some honest research on the next band you cover, instead of jumping on a few political lyrics and attempting to pigeonhole a band you apparently didn't even bother to try to understand.
There are a lot of CL readers out there that are probably just as tired as I am of seeing the endless parade of East Atlanta and Athens noise rock bands grabbing all the attention as if they're the only rock scenes that matter.
-- April Lauren Bundy, Atlanta
Give them retail
(In response to News & Views, "East Point rezoning threatens businesses," Dec. 4): Michael Wall: I would like to give you my opinion about the rezoning of East Point. As I write this, I hear in the distance a loud hum from one of the warehouses in that area. I also hear the load bangs of transfer trucks hooking to trailers at all hours of the night. At the distance that I am from the warehouses, it is bearable, but the closer you get to the source it is much louder. Some would argue that those warehouses were there before many moved here. But there has been a constant change in the type of operations that has been in the various warehouses over the years.
Mutt & Jeff has been a good neighbor and many may not even know that it has been there, because there is no noise factor involved. Some of the others are a nuisance over here.
What may have worked would be turning some of the warehouses into some sort of retail business. There are many that come to mind. Lighting center, home decorating center, a lumber supply. Give the people something that they can see. There are developers that would take on a project such as this. Warehouse and manufacturing businesses alone in East Point just do not bring in much revenue for the city.
The compromise should be, in my opinion, giving the people of East Point somewhere they can shop. Therefore it could still be a mixed-use development and all will benefit.
-- Wayne Bridger, East Point
Tired of being put down
(In response to News & Views, "Redneck rampage," Nov. 20): As a Northerner, 20-year resident of Georgia, lifelong leftist liberal (in fact I'm a Socialist, and there aren't many of us left), old person, urban dweller, poor person and non-middle-class-anti-materialist kind of guy, and son of immigrants, I want to join in the chorus of Confederates who are getting sick of being put down by articles against the Confederate flag.
I've been here a long time, and I don't feel in one bit connected to white Southerners either in their cuisine or general culture, but I'm tired of them being marginalized. Four issues comes to mind.
1) The flag. It means something to them in terms of heritage, and it's not their fault if it was co-opted by the hatred extremists. Let 'em have it. They settled this region, after all.
2) Their religion. Let them worship any way they want. I can't stand fundamentalist Christians, but what I think doesn't matter. It really doesn't. Religion is personal.
3) Their driving on snow and ice. It really is harder here because of the oily roads and the inexperience. Northerners should just lay off on this issue.
4) Their relations with blacks. It's better than it ever has been in the North. We used to keep our major distance from blacks, and still do. They don't.
Everybody just destabilizes the society even more when they dump on white Southerners. Doesn't anyone realize that a bona fide civilization of Euro transplants once existed here? Do we want to perpetuate this needless friction into the next few decades?
-- Gary Kolar, Atlanta
Just read your article on Paul Barman and really enjoyed it (Vibes, "Fear of a white genre," Nov. 27). I liked how you put his work into historical perspective. I've been thinking about how to describe these new non-hip-hop rappers and how they relate to traditional hip-hop and you did a nice job of that.
-- Glenn Barry, San Francisco, Calif.