Letters to the Editor

From the week of November 7, 2002

The Sound of Música

Swallow hell: Harrison Fletcher's "Meanwhile, Back at the Ranchera," in the October 24 issue, was an interesting look at the Mexican music scene. But the Galindos shouldn't get too comfortable: I'm sure that their concert business will soon be gobbled up by the same corporate giants that have swallowed up the rest of the concert scene.

Jay Hudson
via the Internet

The bright stuff: I enjoyed the article on the regional Mexican music scene, although I think the picture might have been painted with colors that were a bit too bright.

I am a security supervisor at the Denver Coliseum and have worked nearly every event there since the beginning of last year. (Please withhold my name, as is my company's policy.) While it is true that most patrons are relaxed and laid-back, there is a healthy percentage of 'bangers who attend, and their agenda is not filled with having a good time and listening to the music.

At the concert that was described in this story, I personally suffered a mild concussion after being pelted in the head with an open yet full can of beer, as well as a number of bruises from breaking up four or five large fights on the floor. Other staff have suffered cuts from small hidden knives, bruises and concussions from being targets of cans and fists, and numerous other injuries.

Again, I enjoyed the article. It was very well-written and entertaining to read. But it's not all flowers and love once the lights go down.

Name withheld on request

X Marks the Spat

Angst furthermore: I saw your announcement asking twenty-somethings to send you stories of their crises.

I am going to be 31 next month. I am part of Generation X, the big sister of these people you are polling for angst. My micro-generation had angst, too. Many trees died for my generation's angst. I could loan some of those books to you. We finally figured out that analyzing navel lint is boring, and now you never hear about us anymore. I work. I volunteer for the Dumb Friends League. I have a social life. My friends do pretty much the same. I suspect most of us are content with having passed our collective, prolonged adolescence. Content, and relieved.

This new crop of early-twenties people are no different. Their navel lint looks like mine used to. How can Westword be thinking there's not enough news in the world right now to waste pages on this?

Just. Grow. Up.

Michelle Hankins
via the Internet

The Moore the Merrier

Mess appeal: Alan Prendergast's "Deeper Into Columbine," in the October 31 issue, was written in such an immature, mean-spirited way, I wonder where the anti-Michael Moore bias comes from. Whatever point the author was trying to make was hidden behind silly insults and sarcasm. Calling Moore a "huge, unsightly mess" who "jerks people around" was nasty. Moore is an insightful man who successfully brought about meaningful dialogue on an important issue with this film. The fact that he does not claim to have the answers does not make his work "gibberish." Prendergast needs to grow up a bit.

Lynne Allen

Pro Bowling: Most of the reviews I have read on Bowling for Columbine have been much more positive than your October 24 "Columbine Primer," but then, the other reviews I have read have been in California newspapers. The people in California have a much more liberal and modern way of viewing the world.

Michael Moore probably had a hard time finding Republicans to interview or debate who could "think for themselves." Republicans are closed-minded conservatives who don't care about the mass majority of the people. I think that the majority of the people who vote Republican are rednecks in the Midwest and the South; the "real" cities that run this country (New York) are mainly Democratic.

If it wasn't for the skiing and the mountains, no one would even want to live in Colorado, because of all of the gun-loving hunters who live here.

Fort Collins

The life of O'Reilly: Quoting from Luke Thompson's Bowling for Columbine review, "Which isn't to say that Moore's wrong and O'Reilly's right (the converse is far more likely!)..."

Really? Until that comment, the review was pretty fair and balanced. But then, I've never written a published commentary, so I don't know how difficult it would be to keep my personal bent out of it. Being objective is no longer considered a journalistic mandate, anyway. You just keep on doing the best you can, okay?

Ricco Heatherly
Renton, Washington

No-Tell Hotel

A tangled Webb: Regarding Stuart Steers's "Lights On," in the October 31 issue: Once again, our bull-market-trained mayor rushes in where financially prudent private interests fear to tread. The analysis behind this hotel scheme is flawed. And the mayor's office is misrepresenting the level of public risk in order to build yet another monument to the Webb administration.

The hotel industry in general has been showing signs of being overbuilt for years. Occupancy rates, room prices and hotel-company stock prices are falling. Only governments are foolish enough to create more supply in the face of stagnant demand. Cities all over the country are scrambling to build more convention capacity and hotel space. What happens when supply increases faster than demand? Prices fall and will make it impossible for Denver to collect the exorbitant $162-a-night room rate needed to make a $350 million hotel boondoggle pay off. Then, when the hotel fails to meet financial expectations, taxpayers will be left holding the bag. The mayor's office claims bondholders will assume all the risk. This is simply inaccurate. Bond investors buy city debt at a reduced interest rate precisely because there is less risk than in a private deal. If the hotel fails, the city could be forced to choose between paying off wealthy investment interests and (for example) fixing streets in poor neighborhoods. I have some swamp land to sell anyone who believes the city will choose in favor of taxpaying citizens.

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