Making Mumia's case
While Enzo di Matteo's animus toward Mumia Abu-Jamal remains "murky" (NOW, June 13-19), the facts are clearer than ever.
The 200-plus people (not 75) who heard Mumia's attorney, Eliot Grossman, speak last week know that, contrary to Di Matteo, both Mumia and his brother provided detailed accounts of the night Officer Daniel Faulkner was killed.
Although these, and the voluntary confession of mob hit man Arnold Beverly (which, contrary to Di Matteo, can be used against him in U.S. courts) prove Mumia's innocence, state and federal judges have refused to consider them.
Faulkner was killed because he was an obstacle to the "payoffs" racket run by crooked Philadelphia cops (the subject of three FBI investigations resulting in 30 convictions).
Di Matteo admits the DA "may have concocted (Mumia's) confession" but fails to mention that the defence now has evidence that neither of the alleged "eyewitnesses" saw the shooting.
Contrary to Di Matteo, the ballistics report indicates that the bullet removed from Faulkner was too deformed to match to any gun but is consistent with being a .38 (Beverly was carrying a .38 revolver). This evidence is available from: email@example.com
Mumia's Lawyer Speaks Committee, Toronto
Right-wing dork in boots
re murkier and murkier. why does Enzo Di Matteo bother? He's obviously hostile.
For starters, any fair person would simply have asked for a door receipt to get a sense of how big the crowd was.
One thousand dollars was collected at the door, and OCAP members and students paid zero, so 250 would have been a fair number. You? You print that 75 people attended. How do you sleep at night?
The tilt in the story is so Sun in essence. The case was tampered with. Why no mention of the missing bullet fragment or why the defence can't have their own ballistics person check the bullet? Funny how you see things your way. I saw Di Matteo at the event. He was sour from the get-go. He's such a dork -- and a right-wing one to boot.
Ron Neems, Toronto
PS: Boots and shorts are for commandos, cops and lost hikers.
Put the bastards in jail
yes, there is smoke and fire in the city of Toronto's kitchen (NOW, June 13-19). The lesson? We have a bunch of kooks running the show.
The head kook, Mayor Mel Lastman, bought his accounting kook, Wanda Liczyk, down from North York with him, and it was business as usual. No open bids, no open competition for contracts and a hidden financial agenda. Let's put these bastards behind bars.
B. Taykel , Toronto
All the crap that's fit to print
re flock off (now, june 13-19).
Apart from the preposterous delicacy of controlling the Canada goose birthrate by egg-oiling (smashing them would be cheaper and less hypocritical), the best bit of information in your piece on the bird evildoers is Barry Mackay's revelation that press photographers don't know the difference between goose crap and the aerated dirt plugs dug up by city parks personnel. The public has long suspected the press of a penchant for "Gotcha" or "All the dirt that's fit to print." It's nice to know that some suspicions are valid.
Geoff Rytell, Toronto
Whiff of U.S. war on drugs
re dopey rcmp stats (now, june 13-19). One need only examine the RCMP's zero tolerance commentaries to the media over the past four years to know where their minds are at.
It seems the RCMP are being coached by members of the American DEA on how to play politics, support zero tolerance in opposition to the scholarly evidence and reap the whirlwind of massive budget increases that are sure to come from it all. I bet the U.S. government would even be quite eager to finance a drug war in your country. That's the road you are on now.
Short Hills, New Jersey
Mounties get their potheads
in dopey rcmp stats, you call attention to heroin seizure statistics, noting that the decrease is probably related to an increased focus on marijuana.
Indeed, when the special Senate committee on illegal drugs visited Richmond, BC, on May 14, Richmond RCMP Superintendent Ward Clapham stated, "As a result of our efforts and focus on our marijuana problems -- which have been increasing -- our statistics on self-generated work in the area of heroin have decreased significantly. They have gone down because our efforts had to go to dealing with marijuana."
New Westminster, BC
josh matlow does a good job of explaining why he, as an environmentalist, would run for the Liberal party (NOW, June 13-19) as opposed to the Green party or NDP.
He explains that "Green issues" could be dealt with better from within the party and that the more environmentalists who join and run for the Liberal party, the more they will give to the cause.
That's a really nice thought, but given that the Liberals' federal cousins have a dictator who doesn't allow anyone in the party to vote against the party line, I wouldn't hold my breath.
Will Wallace, Toronto
Yuppies not TSO's problem
In response to endless appetite For Trash (NOW, June 13-19).
I haven't been to the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (yet), so I don't consider myself up to speed on whatever problems they may have.
But blaming those problems on the yuppie population's love for pop garbage is not going to solve them. That is a shortsighted and immature view.
Michael Johnson, Mississauga
An excuse to be stupid
i enjoy playing soccer or watching it on a field, but I don't understand what this mania of incessant honking, drunken driving and head-lopping by 4-foot-high flags (walking or cycling can be extremely dangerous, particularly on College Street) has to do with soccer. It seems like an excuse to be numb, stupid and sell a lot of flags.
C. Taron, Toronto
lately, now's my style has been getting criticism from readers who feel the people photographed either dress too "freakish" and "bummy" or spend too much on their clothes.
I may have the solution. Maybe NOW should go down to Sherbourne and Queen and photograph one of the homeless people sitting in the park. Most homeless people can't buy a DKNY suit, and because of their unfortunate situation can't really be criticized for dressing "bummy."
Craig Baker, Toronto
Hard Rock comeback
I am compelled to write after reading Steven Davey's review of the newly renovated Hard Rock Café at Yonge and Dundas Square (NOW, June 6-12).
Davey's observations about our extensive collection of memorabilia are puzzling. Bo Diddley's violin is perhaps one of our most unique pieces. Gord Downie's "anonymous" sports jacket is clearly displayed as the actual blazer worn by Gord at Hard Rock Café's Rockfest in Chicago in 2000. It's unfortunate that Davey didn't notice the signed Nickelback guitar or the Fender jazz bass guitar signed by Geddy Lee.
Davey's comments regarding the food are similarly confusing.
Hard Rock Café serves an 8-ounce all-beef burger. As the most seasoned backyard BBQer can tell you, all burgers lose weight upon cooking. We serve ours medium-well unless otherwise specified, and the average weight loss of a medium-well 8-ounce all-beef burger is 2 to 3 ounces. One would think someone with a "test kitchen" would be aware of this.
The remark about our Cobb Salad perplexes the most. It would appear that Davey didn't order the Cobb Salad, but merely felt compelled to comment on its appearance on the menu. If he had ordered one, he would have been able to tell that it exceeds the Cobb Salad offered by "another tourist attraction where drinks come in logo-emblazoned glasses sold as souvenirs." Love all, serve all.
Kirk Thompson General Manager, Hard Rock Café Toronto
Perlich, where's the love?
I just got off a long flight and wish I hadn't picked up NOW Magazine. It's not the first time I've thought this. And I know Tim Perlich gets a charge out of his hate mail, so I will spill my rage cautiously about his Tragically Hip disc review (NOW, June 13-19).
Tim's adolescent-flavoured negativity has become predictable and banal. I'm sure he was a music fan once, and broke into journalism to spread the love of his passion. Then, his written words became impotent and his love turned sour. Or maybe he just suffers from the "Canada is never cool" mindset.
We all find our polluted pop culture frustrating, but nagging, thoughtless negativity adds nothing and makes nothing better. Artists and journalists have a responsibility to the public. Where is Tim's accountability?
Hawksley Workman, Toronto