Let’s be Crystal clear
NOW’s July edition of the Hot Summer Guide, which is quite solid (NOW, July 3-?9), notes that Toronto critical darlings Crystal Castles “have the honour of being the first Canadian act to grace the cover of NME.” While indie hipsters might have basked in that comment, it’s untrue. Montreal’s own critical darlings, the Arcade Fire, were on the cover in February 2007. And while technically not pictured on the cover, another Montreal band, Godspeed You! Black Emperor, were featured on the July 1999 NME cover.
Parks ban fun
It was with disbelief that I read that “every city park closes at midnight” (NOW, July 3-?9). I was unaware that I am living in a police state. As a child in St. Catharines, I remember the “Do not walk on the grass” signs in city parks and had heard of Port Dalhousie beach barring negroes and Jews way back when. It seems to me that a fundamental Charter freedom of peaceful assembly is being infringed upon here.
Nuke first option
Commenting on the nato discussion document that appears to condone first-strike nuclear attacks (NOW, July 3-?9), Paul Weinberg notes: “First use was a last resort until George W. Bush made it central military policy.” It’s truly a shame that Bush has not made first use of his brain cells during his tenure as president.
Raising a Glass
Thanks to now for highlightinga great Canadian. I can’t think of a better embodiment of Canada than Corey Glass and his fellow U.S. Iraq war resisters (NOW, July 3-?9).
Glass has served his country in Iraq, but, based on what he witnessed, has stood up for his principles and left family and friends behind to avoid being redeployed in Bush’s war of terror. For this he should not only be welcomed, but commended, when so many have capitulated by conforming to Bush’s American project in the Middle East. If only we had a prime minister worthy of the war resisters in Canada!
How can Harper resist?
War resisters like Corey Glass are right to refuse their continued participation in America’s illegal war in Iraq. The “I was just following orders” excuse didn’t work at Nuremberg. And history won’t take a much kinder view of the Bush administration’s bloody grab for oil. Canada should be a sanctuary for all who can stand tall in the face of what is wrong. Will Mr. Harper?
John Gary Bovay
T.O. or bust
Regarding toronto tour bust (NOW, July 3-?9). Let’s face it, Toronto’s a dead end.
Hogtown a hick town
As the owner of a new attraction in downtown Toronto that receives rave reviews from foreign visitors, I must say it is no surprise that people call our city boring. Toronto does everything in its power to ensure that no new attraction will succeed in the core. Traffic cops, like vultures, wait outside my shop to hand out $30 tickets just to assure my customers that they are not welcome. Their message is loud and clear: stay in the burbs, where parking is free. Add to this the generous 48-hour notice I was given about filming out front on Canada Day. Why bother to even mention the arrogance of the film company, or compensation for business interruption? They tell you by their arrogance they know what they are dealing with – a hick town. And the way we’re going, that will never change.
Laugh Resort’s revolution
Thanks to Glenn Sumi for the mention of the closing of the Laugh Resort (NOW, June 26-?July 2). With regulars like Brian Hartt, Mark Farrell, Brent Butt, Eric Tunney and Ron James and acts like Louis C.K., Paula Poundstone, Dave Attell, Ray Romano, Rich Hall, Steve Harvey and Jonathan Katz (as well as the odd guest set by someone like Chris Rock), the club’s place in this country’s comedy evolution cannot be overstated.
I was just reading your article Boycott Takes Hit (NOW, June 26-?July 2), and would like to offer more information about the upcoming Beenie Man show at Kool Haus. Many precautions have been taken to ensure that no hate lyrics will be performed. In the past, Kool Haus has cancelled several shows after discovering explicit or offensive content in the artists’ material.
Now, all booking inquiries at Kool Haus are taken under the advisement of the Toronto police. In addition, artists who perform at Kool Haus are required to sign a disclaimer outlining our no-?tolerance policy toward hate lyrics, discrimination and/or defamation of another’s character or beliefs. This is enforced by police on site.
We regret any past insult felt by the gay community, and we remain committed to providing a safe and positive environment for everyone.
Assistant Director of Public Relations
Embracing Rachel Corrie
I attended the I am Rachel Corrie play recently (NOW, June 12-?19), and I thought it was wonderful and the lead actor, Bethany Jillard, brilliant. I do not understand why Toronto Jews do not embrace this play. The show has received so little publicity from the Toronto media.
U.S. election full of hot air
Will November 2008 bring a meaningful change to America (NOW, July 3-9)? Will getting rid of George W. Bush and Richard Cheney without impeachment or indictment really make a difference? Will the $93 billion in profits for private health insurance companies be used instead for full health care coverage for all? Will torture stop and the U.S. withdraw from Iraq immediately? Will all students in public universities be able to enroll for free?
The answer to these questions in the context of the current presidential campaign is an absolute no. There is a race candidate, a gender candidate and a tortured veteran candidate, each running with support of political parties so deeply embedded in the military industrial complex, the health insurance companies, Wall Street and corporate media that it is indeterminable where the board rooms separate from the state rooms.
Professor of Sociology
Sonoma State University
Rohnert Park, California