One pissed-off Yank
the delightful sentiments expressed in "Name Withheld's" letter Osama's U.S. Tour (NOW, January 3-9) segue nicely into the warm thoughts expressed by Mr. Duane King ("I thought it unfortunate that the terrorists didn't succeed in getting the White House").
Maybe King has "forgiven (him)self for (his) hateful, insensitive thoughts," but I have not. Nor, I can assure you, have a couple hundred million other Americans who are getting a tad pissed off at snivelling weasels like these in ungrateful, effete shithole countries like Canada. On behalf of the 99.99 per cent of Americans who do not live in Berkeley, I would kindly ask that these letter writers, along with the rest of you leftist traitors, stay the fuck out of our country.
S. Macdonald, Boston
Us surly? Nah...
i used to be an avid reader of NOW Magazine for its local perspective on culture and politics. These days I pick up NOW when I'm desperate to kill time. Your Best & Worst Of 2001 (NOW, December 27-January 2) only underlined my reasons: your swipes at the Sun and Star are shamefully hypocritical. NOW has followed the similarly sad path that Rolling Stone did in the 80s -- a tiresome bore wrapped all too comfortably in the cloak of its once vital youth.
Your political reporters have little more to offer than chic surliness. Your reliance on photo-manipulation, once genuinely innovative, now sadly demonstrates the increasing cynicism of your point of view. NOW all but pronounces itself the voice of an anti-corporatist, left-of-centre generation while panhandling "The Goods" from such grassroots merchants as Ikea.
In declaring yourself First, Fearless and Free, you've only seemed to win your own election. For those of us who do not work at NOW, it hardly matters. It hasn't for a while.
H. Chinowski, Toronto
This guy is weird
re oke g. pamp's dissertation on Osama Bin Laden.
When I was growing up in Illinois in the 1950s, one Oke G. Pamp used to write a lot of letters to the Chicago Tribune. I remember thinking, "This guy is weird."
Now I see in his last two letters that the Mr. Pamp of today has described the killing of civilians in the World Trade Center as "long overdue." Could what I thought was weirdness in the 50s be a sociopathic hatred of the U.S. based on Pamp's own unfortunate experiences there?
John Kneeland, Burlington
Can I be charged for this?
thanks for the inspiring article by Robert Priest (NOW, January 3-9).
A vibrant discussion among friends this evening has left me eager to ask a few simple questions.
Why have no major media outlets in the western world reported details of a single non-American casualty?
Can I now, under new Canadian laws, be arrested, held without charge, denied legal counsel and tried and sentenced in secret by an American military tribunal for sending you this letter?
Ron Metella, Toronto
Scandal at city runs deep
i enjoyed your article on the MFP controversy (NOW, December 13-19). Amalgamation is truly proving to be testimony to what can go wrong when bureaucrats are left completely unattended. More hands will be caught in the cookie jar or, as others would like to have it, not found out at all.
If former city of Toronto employees were "in conflict (of interest)," it is my concern that similar actions may have taken place while the provincial government created the amalgamation mess we are in today.
Are there any other questionable contracts that were made during this time that went unnoticed by council and its former members?
If more politicians held fundamental beliefs like those of Jesse Ventura, governor of Minnesota, we would have more accountable elected politicians than we have today.
Name withheld by request, Toronto
Selective free speech
according to now, b'nai brith should "Put Up Or Shut Up" (NOW, December 27-January 2), proving that Now is committed to free speech for itself but not for those with whom it disagrees.
As for the "venom" Now accuses B'nai Brith of spouting, NOW's case would be stronger if it could supply even a single example.
Dan Goorevitch, Toronto
Bike-lane snow job
as part of the crew that removes snow from city streets, I can say that whoever "told" Sarah Nilsson we put the snow on bicycle paths (NOW, December 27-January 2) is mistaken or deluded.
During a snowfall, the first priority is to make the main streets passable by salting them or, if it is a heavy snowfall, plowing.
After roads are passable, the bicycle paths are cleaned as quickly as possible by crews using loaders, Bombardier plows and salt trucks.
Michael Tomasek , Toronto
Visions of Krispy Kreme
ate a krispy kreme doughnut the other day (NOW, December 20-26). Saw God. Got the meaning of life. Walked away in a sugary, euphoric haze. Didn't get why NOW didn't get it. Ahh. The usual puerile rebellion.
A.J. Arbour, Toronto
More military poop
re the year-end yarns of our prime minister. Once again his comments had me laughing to the point of having to reach for the Depenz.
Only our Jean could tell us how the perception of an ill-equipped Canadian military can be blamed on arms dealers and lobbyists. From what we hear from the U.S., the UN and the military itself, the Liberals sure haven't fallen to their siren call. Our equipment is slightly more modern than that boasted by the Vatican's Swiss guards, but don't worry, be happy.
Given the colossal allotment of male bovine excrement that appears to be oozing from Sussex Drive, maybe we should re-arm our armed forces with honey wagon technology. At least our government would never again be accused of not giving a poop.
Ron Thornton, Edmonton
Left hanging by Barbie
re ken and barbie's sweatshop (NOW, December 20-26).
It's nearly impossible to avoid sweatshop-made purchases during the holiday season or the rest of the year. So what are we supposed to do about it? Unfortunately, this article doesn't mention a single action we can take to effect change in sweatshop conditions. Some dismal facts are laid out, and then the article abruptly ends -- probably leaving many readers feeling both guilty and helpless.
There are many effective ways to influence the behaviour of our favourite Swoosh-stitchers and Barbie-makers. If you're going to report on what's broken, offer up some tools to start the repairs!
Carly Steinman, Toronto
An affront to Judaism
leah rumack's article bagels for Santa Claus (NOW, December 20-26) on Jews celebrating Christmas is not only puerile but insulting to Jews.
Rumack's view is that Jewish holidays such as Hanukkah are inadequate for Jews so they must look elsewhere for fulfillment. Doesn't this validate what Christians say -- that Judaism is an unrealized religion?
JACOB Mendlovic, Toronto
Home alone for the holidays
there's nothing like knowing you're going to spend Christmas alone.
I slowly drag myself out of bed into the shower in some sort of vain hope that going through my normal routine will make the day go by faster.
After staring outside my kitchen window, waiting for my Pop Tart to thaw, I plunk myself down in front of the TV, which barrages me with every Christmas special known to man.
After three hours of flipping between reruns, the truly great part of my day begins -- the numerous phone calls from family and friends making that special effort to wish me well.
I give up on answering the phone. Dinner time rolls round. I flip through the local delivery places that are open on Christmas Day.
There's nothing like eating a meal that comes in a brown paper bag, alone and in silence, a measuring stick of how shitty you feel.
General resentment toward the rest of the world kicks in. Finally, I feel myself getting tired enough to go to sleep, happy in knowing that I've gotten through another Christmas without killing myself or any neighbourhood pets.
But in six days I'll have to go through the second most disastrous holiday to spend alone -- New Year's.
Yifei Ding, Toronto
Comedy Now a bad joke
kudos to now for calling the Comedy Network (NOW, December 27-January 2) on its sexist casting policies for the show Comedy Now!
It was unspeakably absurd to see all those great female comedians stuffed into one show, in a sea of their male peers all given their own specials.
Name withheld by request, Toronto
That's six bums
thank you to matt galloway for mentioning my band, Deep Dark United, in his glowering review of the Hidden Cameras at Lee's Palace (NOW, December 20-26).
There are two clarifications I'd like to make. Firstly, there were only six bums onstage during our set, and secondly, we sounded like shit, not mud. I can't believe Matt couldn't even recognize his own lunch.
Alex LukashEvsky Toronto