Letters to the Editor

Page 4 of 5

By the way, if anyone knows how to brainwash teenagers, please contact us. On some days, we'd sure like to try it.
Rexford Brown
Executive Director, P.S.1

Fair Trade

I am a regular reader of Westword, and Michael Roberts has always been one of my favorite writers. I was disappointed to read that he was going to be leaving his position as music editor and would be helming a new media critique page, but I looked forward to him moving the crosshairs of his stinging critiques from the (for the most part) abysmal music scene to take aim at the laughably shallow and ineptly played game of "candyland" that is the mainstream media in Colorado.

I have found, though, that in the Message, he has more often than not chosen to adopt a more low-key tone. He seems to be confining himself to simply stating facts and (fairly) indulging both sides of any given story. Which, I guess, is the ideal journalistic tack, but I miss the "I don't give a shit if someone doesn't like what I have to say" editorial nature of Roberts's best work, and I hope that he eventually brings this to his new pieces.
Eric Martines

Whatever happened to that idiot Michael Roberts? Checking out your site, I didn't see him around...thankfully! Did he go north to Wyoming?
Ty Longley
via the Internet

Thanks for Michael Roberts's informative Message in the May 11 issue, "A Classic Case," regarding the ongoing saga of Denver's fine-arts music station KVOD. I'm an avid listener of KVOD and will be sorely disappointed if the new owners choose to make major changes to the station from its current professional, classic format hosted by equally professional members of our music community.

As I heard Jim Conder point out the other morning, this article of Roberts's was much more explanatory of the situation at KVOD than have been stories provided of late by other media consultants in the area. It also described the ongoing efforts and position of the Citizens for Classical FM, a group of which I was not aware.

Thanks again for the information and for bringing, once again, this potentially unfortunate situation to the public's attention. Perhaps it will, in some measure, increase an appreciation for what we already have in KVOD and help to keep the station with us just as it is today.
Craig Grimm

Oh, Grow Up!

Regarding Stuart Steers's "Where the Sidewalk Ends," in the April 27 issue:

Seeing the growth issue from both sides of the fence -- as a citizen and working in an architectural office with developers as clients -- I strongly feel that controlled growth and mixed density make for better and sustainable living. The Front Range is not, and shouldn't become, L.A. Unfortunately, it will happen sooner than we think. Look at the Boulder Turnpike corridor and Highlands Ranch for examples of bad and bland planning. They call it "new suburbanism," which means you only have to drive two miles to shop instead of five or more. That's also called "marketing."

Colorado used to have walkable neighborhood communities, but thanks to legislators, their tax-based incentives and a bastardized "American Dream," we develop five miles on the outskirts of town and reap what we sow: bland housing with bland buildings and lots of asphalt. But since everyone has to have a mini-mansion to put all of those shopping bags in, they move to those exact housing developments they despise. The communities and design professionals have to demand and encourage smart and responsible development that meets the community needs -- read: "mixed use and increased density." If the planning departments and county commissioners spend money for master plans, they need to make them enforceable, not a recommendation. It's akin to saying, "It's bad to drive drunk, but we recommend you drink only two beers instead of six."

Most developers are willing to do what the cities require, because in the long run, the developer will make money and provide services to communities that want them. Developers just want a streamlined and logical way to bring amenities and housing to market. Citizens want controlled and smart growth, and they ask for it over and over and over again.

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