After reading "Guitar Guru," I felt compelled to write to Westword, a publication I'd stopped reading — I occasionally scan it for gigs to pay the bills — because, to me, it reads like an endless parade of wannabe "artists" inexplicably deemed worthy of Westword's creaky spotlight as it lurches weekly to illuminate a wisp of substance in these day-job amateurs.
Why the rant?
Many of the local music "artists" profiled here make few real sacrifices for music and therefore have no stories to tell. In fact, they often vanish before the maundering writers of Westword can swivel the tired torch to yet another sap destined to collapse under the gravity of the 9-5 escapism whence they came — or worse, join another ill-hatched ensemble doomed to unravel. Why Westword belches about the occupants of this revolving door is beyond me. I remain unenlightened.
And then I read Jon Solomon's article on John McLaughlin. I admire Jon's restraint. It seems he took McLaughlin's words to heart, sloughing off commentary and getting out of the way of the exceptional content. Thanks for letting the message come through. As a professional musician, I found it not only the best article I've read and the most inspiring, but the first one interesting enough to read start to finish. There are Denver musicians with inspiring tales, but Westword must set loose the "original artist" bias to tell them.
Thanks, Jon and John!
"Border Lines," Patricia Calhoun, November 25
Thanks for running text of the Tom Tancredo/Gustavo Arellano shootout at Metro. Very interesting. It confirmed the validity of Arellano's basic position: that the vast majority of immigrants, illegal or otherwise, wish us no harm and by and large have no problem with assimilation (whatever that is). But it also did something that surprised me a little: It convinced me that Tancredo isn't a political nutcase, as many liberals believe, but a pretty intelligent dude. A self-absorbed asshole, but intelligent. He is correct in saying that national immigration policy is currently a joke. He is, refreshingly, correct in saying that U.S. drug policy is laughable. But I think he is clearly wrong in suggesting that we can actually afford to go through the trauma and expense of kicking all illegal immigrants out of the country.
A rational immigration policy would allow "illegal" immigrants to establish some kind of quasi-legal status, pay taxes, have accountability, etc.
By the way, have you looked into whether letters to Arellano might be written by, uh, Arellano? The style and smartassedness of the letters appear to me suspiciously Arellano-like. Has he ever been asked to verify the names and addresses of correspondents?
¿Que piensa? (Don't get me wrong, I love Arellano's stuff. Witty and enlightening.)
I blame the liberal news media for the slow death of our nation. They welcome illegal aliens with open arms, making heroes out of the law-breakers and villains out of true heroes like Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who does his sworn duty to uphold the law. With political correctness running the country today, we have officials who pick and choose only the laws they personally like to enforce and forget the others. We have sanctuary cities and states! Our country is a joke to these illegal aliens who learn quickly they can go far by playing the race card.
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Here's something to ponder, people: Latinos are one of the groups that get preferential treatment — "affirmative action" — over the rest of us. Once these 12 to 30 million illegals become legalized by the stroke of a pen, they will go ahead of you and your children for school enrollment, getting a job and even obtaining government grants. These are some of the neediest people on the planet, so be prepared to take care of them, America.
Posted at westword.com