Uranus to social change
I found lots of valuable and informative reporting in your Earth Day special (NOW, April 17-24), but I disagree with the astrology that you slipped in to the mix, specifically, the claim that the alignment of Uranus and Pluto facilitates social change on Earth.
You may recall that similar claims were once made about the alignment of Jupiter and Mars in the song Age Of Aquarius.
In terms of the detailed historical data that you included, it is perfectly true that many significant historical events have happened while Uranus and Pluto have been aligned.
It is also true that lots of significant historical events have happened when Uranus and Pluto have not been aligned. We can read astrological significance into literally any possible arrangement of stars and planets, but it’s an illusion.
Divine intervention would be even more convenient. But I wouldn’t count on that.
Blowing hot air cars
Thanks for the full-page car ad on the inside cover of your “Green Issue.” Your issue devoted as much space to car ads as to critical discussion of cars.
In a blurb on air cars, Adria Vasil writes, “While we hold our breath waiting for a car-free world....”
Yes, we are holding our breath, but we need an alternative paper with principles rather than one more interested in the mighty dollar.
Forage not, green friends
Foraging in Toronto? No! No! No! Get your hands off our vegetation.
Our wild ginger has been depleted from many areas where it grew only a few years ago, and wild leeks have become harder to find.
What ever inspired you to think it’s all there for your taking? Have you not heard the adage “Take nothing but photos, leave nothing but footprints”?
Our human needs certainly are not the same as those of birds, mammals and reptiles. We happen to have access to a huge, global agricultural industry.
Planes, trains and SUVs
We appreciate your support for substantial taxes on air travel in your Earth Day issue, given the increasingly desperate need to drastically reduce, not continue to expand, air transport.
This is particularly true for short-haul flights, which the Island Airport serves exclusively.
A Porter Q400 that is 70 per cent full of passengers – and most are far from that, from our observations – emits twice as much greenhouse gases per passenger as those emitted if each passenger drove an SUV, which is itself an environmentally expensive alternative to rail, of course.
We all love to fly. Unfortunately, the party has to end. Our planet demands it. Cutting back on flying, particularly short-haul flights, is an e-ffective way to start addressing climate change.
And closing the Island Airport would be a potent symbol of our determination to finally get serious.
Bike issue cop-out
I was intrigued by letters praising the Bike Issue (NOW, April 10-16).
Wake up, people. That issue was a joke. The long arm of a traffic-cop-lovin’ editor could be seen in every story.
The worst was Susan G. Cole’s screed about how she loves cyclists – from behind the windscreen of her automobile. She wants to be our "friend."
I tell you what, Susan. You in your carbon-spewing car can never be our friend until you’re willing to carry your own weight the way we do.
And don’t go telling us to “behave” when traffic laws are in place only because automobiles make the roads dangerous for everyone.
China’s Olympic disarray
RE Olympic High-wire Act (NOW, April 10-16). The Chinese Communist government has done well to use nationalism to strengthen its hand in the Olympic boycott debate.
The strategy has worked abroad as well. When Chinese Canadians hear Western criticism of the Chinese government, they automatically assume the criticism is of the people, not the government.
From the beginning, the Chinese government has framed the Tibetan uprising as insurgents fighting for independence, even though the Dalai Lama has long stopped calling for independence, and is asking instead for protection of Tibetan culture.
Karen J. Cao
Rear-ending red lights
RE Seeing Red (NOW, April 3-9). as a driver, cyclist and pedestrian, I have never seen a red-light camera cause a rear-end collision.
In fact, I constantly hear cars going into passing gear when lights turn yellow or red. Stupid, selfish, irresponsible drivers cause accidents, not an inert piece of metal 60 feet distant and barely visible.
J. Kevin Kelleher
Healey’s the real hero
Guitar hero? As in the video game? On the cover of NOW (NOW, April 3-9)?!?
The only guitar hero who belongs on your cover right now is Jeff Healey. I can’t believe how little press was given to this legend of the world stage.
NOW only published an article that was hardly half a page long. For all Jeff did for Toronto music and for guitar playing in general, this seems more than a tad understated.
Let’s hope that with publicist Richard Flohil behind the memorial shows on May 3 and 4, your publication will include a proper tribute to this Toronto guitar legend. Rest in peace, Jeff.
Website needs pumping
I love your print edition. It rocks. It’s everything I’ve always wanted in a weekly urban paper.
Your website, however, leaves a lot to be desired. I have one word to describe your website: flat. I am a research junkie, I fully admit, and I went to your site to find a listing of all the reggae clubs in Toronto, with user reviews.
Instead, I clicked on Index of Clubs and got an A-Z listing by club name, with no links or even club description within. Come on, what’s going on?
This is a rant, so it’s okay for me to go on about this, right? Your Web edition needs some pumpin’ up!