Put this Cube on ice
With the world swamped in violence and the media falling all over itself to give us gory, graphic images, I was very disappointed to see this moron Ice Cube snarling at me from your cover last week (NOW, August 17-23). NOW does a great job of presenting alternative views to those found in the mainstream press and generally makes a very positive contribution to our city in areas like the environment, civic politics and equality, not to mention being the best source for information about live music!
But I don't think defending this guy's "street cred" as a "gansta rapper" does much for NOW 's credibility. Peace starts with each choice that each person makes, including who you put on the cover. Either you're part of the solution or you're part of the problem.
I've been a classified advertiser for almost 20 years. I just want to inform you that I will no longer be advertising with your company.
The picture of Ice Cube on the new issue, looking like he's going to drill me in the head with his brass knuckles I find disgusting and something that promotes violence.
Very bad taste, very tacky. I am not impressed.
Fave Productions, Toronto
Harper no hero
Stephen Harper's decision not to attend the AIDS conference (NOW, August 17-23) was a terrible political choice. He should at least have been there to greet Bill Clinton, Bill Gates and the many other dignitaries in attendance.
Maybe Harper would have been moved by the effects of AIDS on all of us. HIV/AIDS is a global political health issue, and the people who are working on solving it came to our country because they want our help.
Our PM shunned them.
What a hero!
Marie Richer claims that the spread of AIDS is "highly correlated to poverty" (NOW, August 17-23). What nonsense! AIDS is, and has always been, a disease spread largely through behaviour. In the West, gay men continue to account for a very disproportionate number of AIDS cases despite generally not being particularly poor. In Africa, AIDS has decimated the sub-Saharan regions but not the more socially conservative Islamic countries. If AIDS were so strongly linked to poverty, then countries like Somalia and Niger would be having the same AIDS crisis as Zimbabwe or South Africa.
Meanwhile, Uganda's ABC program (Abstinence, Be faithful, use a Condom) saw the continent's largest drop in AIDS cases. Unfortunately, the AIDS lobby detests anything that interferes with sexual freedom or alternative lifestyles. Good luck fighting STDs with that mentality.
What's Young implying?
More children are killed by cars than by pedophiles, claims Alan Young (NOW, August 17-23). Is Young trying to imply that there are men out there who get behind the wheel of a car and purposefully look for children to mow down in the streets? Of course not. Young's sensitivity radar clearly malfunctioned the moment he decided to commit to print such an outrageous statement.
Dyer sly like Fox News
As much I tend to hold the position that Israel overreached when it pulverized Lebanon, Gwynne Dyer paints a very bleak picture (NOW, August 17-23) of a region that could use a positive voice or two of diplomacy. Not that a journalist should have to play the role of a diplomat, but in describing Israel's position as "humiliating" while describing Hezbollah guerrillas as "skilled" and "disciplined," Dyer not only appears to have taken a side in this crisis, but also emulates the reporting style of Fox News.
James Di Fiore
Suckers for Slayer
Thanks for including a review of Slayer's Christ Illusion in your recent issue (NOW, August 10-16). It's nice to see NOW notice a type of music other than rock. Unfortunately, Slayer doesn't need the press. They're one of the metal bands out there that don't have to have jobs on the side. Perhaps a review of Blood Mountain, Mastodon 's forthcoming album, making its way around the Internet, can find its way into your pages.
Four Ns for this sukka.
Rewarding hydro hogs
Andrew Cash expressed some of my own thoughts on Toronto Hydro's peakSAVER scheme (NOW, August 10-16). If every resident of Toronto were allocated a reasonable seasonal hydro allowance, the charges to be levied could be easily calculated.
The personal allowance would need to factor in numerous components (heating type, medical conditions, etc). Of course, this is a costly undertaking, but think of the possible payoffs in reduced energy usage in the long term.
Premium charges above the allocation would help to ensure the fair distribution of energy costs.
This sort of scheme would also reduce frustration levels for those of us constantly seeing hydro pigs running air conditioners non-stop without regard to the actual outside temperature. And don't even mention the whiff of dryer sheets when the outside temperature is high enough to dry clothes quicker!
Those of us living energy-conscious lives could take some satisfaction that less energy-conscious people would be paying for their abuse.
But the current Toronto Hydro rebate program is alienating the greenest of current hydro users and rewarding the most gluttonous.
Surf summer fun, not glum
I'm sorry to see that NOW has lost touch with what's happening in Toronto. Sadly, college-age kids who picked up a recent issue (NOW, August 10-16) would have missed the best event of the weekend, Wakestock.
They probably would've taken your Tip Sheet's advice and visited Taste Of The Danforth (can't you get Greek food 365 days of the year?) or maybe would have gone to see Oliver Stone's ultra-depressing histo-bore movie or attended a Middle East conflict rally, the AIDS conference or a Mariah Carey concert? Yikes! C'mon, NOW, we have all winter to get depressed over the world's problems. Where's the summer celebration? Is Wakestock not "street" enough for you guys?
The problem with Caribana
I read so much in now about the "problems" with either Gay Pride or Caribana celebrations (NOW, August 10-16). In the eyes of some, one event is morally outrageous, the other is dangerous. I suspect that these sentiments are shared by a highly overlapping group of people who don't participate in either event. If there are problems, my solution is quite simple: combine the celebrations! We can have Gay Caribbean Week or Caribana Pride. Then all the farts who have problems can have them all at once and get it over with. The rest of us can just party!
Does Glenn Sumi ever write an objective review? Of course, as a critic, it's part of his job to inject his own bias, but Sumi has more than proven his propensity to lean toward anything that is mainstream, white and formulaic. God help the playwrights or actors who dare to stretch the boundaries of what mainstream society considers appropriate. Shameful, considering that Sumi is a member of a visible minority himself.
Instead of supporting, celebrating and encouraging the wealth of stories of Toronto's artists of colour, Sumi chooses time and again to deem them unworthy of his praise.