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Going Postal

The only card to play
In your recent article on Sherry Dorsey ("Sherry Dorsey Plays the Race Card," June 20) you claim that she is playing the race card and is behind the times. But it looks like her views are right on target. The city of Atlanta has always been about race. It is race that caused whites to leave the city in the first place, and it is race that is moving black people out. The communities that Mrs. Dorsey represents have been working-class black communities for decades, and these residents have a right to be angry over what has transpired. Houses have been sold in East Lake for three and four times what they are worth. Greedy developers and naive whites have caused a situation which cannot be repaired. The article claims that Dorsey has not sought ways to bring people together.

But how can she when the economic divide between new residents and old is so drastically different? This is not a situation in which whites moved in to become a part of the community again and helped to develop programs which would benefit all citizens, but a clear attempt to change the neighborhood itself.

If anything, Dorsey should be applauded for energizing black residents to fight and organize themselves against gentrification and the side effects it creates. The problems in East Lake have triggered a wake-up call for blacks (who still comprise 60 percent of the city's population) in other neighborhoods to take more control over development and housing in their communities, and to always look over your shoulder.

-- David Harrison, Atlanta

Rocky, horrid journalism
I have been a Creative Loafing reader for a long time and I have always appreciated the quality of journalism the publication exhibits. However, the article that you wrote about the Rocky scene was the most offensive thing I have ever encountered ("Rocky Horrid Rivalry," June 20). I am a 20-year-old member of N9. All the quotes you provided were taken out of context.

I really don't know anybody who would appreciate being referred to as a "fringe-dwelling social misfit." I find us to be quite the opposite. The people and personalities I have encountered in this group have done more for me than I can ever explain. N9 is not just the disorganized bunch of drunks your article made us out to be. We are bright, talented individuals. N9 is more than just a Rocky Horror cast. We are active in the local convention circuit, providing most of the security force for Dragon*Con. We have an artists' collective started by members of N9 in order to allow some of our artists to share their resources and abilities with one another. Several members of N9 are involved in Wacko Productions, a local film company startup. We are actors, writers, painters, musicians, poets, dancers, sculptors, directors, dreamers.

We are family to one another no matter what our differences may be. I have never had the privilege of knowing such a diverse group with so much in common. I feel that we were unfairly represented and that we deserve an apology. I know that all publicity is good publicity, but our reputation and integrity are more important. Thank you for your time.

-- Tiffany Counts, Stone Mountain

Cover shock
I picked up the Creative Loafing newspaper and was quite surprised by the cover ("Swing Shift," June 13). I think that it was a little distasteful and disturbing. There is a time and place for everything and in a government building is not the place where this paper should be displayed.

I am an open-minded person, but the front cover alone makes me wonder if any thought was put into this issue. I find it hard to believe that you actually thought this was appropriate. I thought the cover was in bad taste and then I looked inside the paper and saw the article and the pictures displayed. Why would you need to display those type of pictures?

I read most of the article and found it sad that people are so casual about something that is not casual at all. The couple from Cobb County who were going to move because they were afraid of what people might say about them, I found that story quite funny. I don't understand why people who will have group sex and sleep with complete strangers worry about their reputation.

I am sure that you receive numerous letters of complaints and compliments, but you, for one, should appreciate the right to voice your opinion. I do enjoy reading your newspaper on occasion, but not this week. I could go on and on about how wrong I think this article was, but deep down, I'm sure you know that it was inappropriate. Children were accessible to this material and even to an adult, it was just plain sick to look at.

-- Amanda Blount, Lawrenceville

Swinging our way
Thank you so much for presenting our lifestyle in a positive light ("Swing Shift," June 13). My husband and I are new to the lifestyle but love every minute of it. It has inspired a closeness that I am not sure we could have achieved without the honest and open communication we have after any lifestyle encounter. We are active members of Utopia and the Velvet Heaven. I have sent your article to as many people I can think of.

-- Name withheld upon request

Murky Hooch waters
In reading Michael Wall's "Poop in the Hooch" article (June 13), I could not shake the notion that there's got to be more to the story. It does not seem feasible that the Chattahoochee Outdoor Center could single-handedly prevent the National Park Service from posting signs designed to warn the public of possible health hazards on the Chattahoochee River.

For one thing, COC is the concessionaire to the NPS. They rent their buildings from the NPS and clear all business dealings, right down to the rates they are allowed to charge and their hours of operations with NPS officials. In short, COC doesn't sneeze unless the NPS gives them the green light. So how could COC dictate whether NPS posts NPS signs on NPS land?

I am also curious about what the signs themselves are designed to tell. That there are pollutants in the river is no surprise to anyone. Whether the pollutants are so concentrated as to harm people fishing, rafting or wading in the Hooch is another matter. I do not think that their testing is designed to really inform anyone of anything. Wall concedes in his article that COC's manager, Ken Gibbons, makes a good point by explaining that the test results are posted 24 hours after the fact, leaving the current water conditions an absolute mystery. I can imagine a scientist taking water samples one morning, driving them to the lab, incubating the cultures and returning the following day to post his results on a sign effectively informing the public of how clean the water was yesterday. It's really non-information.

There's got to be a liability issue going on here. The NPS wants to show the public its concern for its safety, but has yet to find an effective way of providing usable information. Even if they post the signs, what exactly are they trying to say?

-- Francis Buchanan, Atlanta

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