Greenhouse Gas AttackTo the Editor,
Regarding Elna Otter's letter ("Hot Topic," June 8): Global warming and its causes and effects are highly debatable. I think the environmental leftists are as guilty as the conservative rightists when it comes to getting so-called scientists to expound upon their theories of the cause and effects of the so-called "Greenhouse Gas Effect." Each side pays for proprietary scientific opinions to support their own political agenda.
I say it's time that those of us in the middle demand some responsible research by independent-minded scientists who are neither members of the Sierra Club nor the John Birch Society. After all, let us remember it was the EPA who mandated the inclusion of MTBE in gasoline for the creation of oxygenated fuels. We now know that MTBE destroys groundwater supplies and we do not know how to get rid of it. It has taken the EPA years to reverse itself, after having written regulations that required refiners to use this poison in the manufacture of oxygenated gasolines. I, for one, am for responsible treatment of the planet, but I damn sure want some thought and pertinent science put to work before the federal and state governments mandate things just because rich liberal entertainers in Hollywood and members of the Sierra Club say so. The liberals are every bit as bad as the corporate moguls on the right when it comes to political agendas and influence pedaling.
Green Thumbs-UpTo the Editor,
Thanks for Tim Vanderpool's "Silent Spring Session" (June 8) and the review of the extraordinarily bad bills that came out of the last legislative session.
The radicals who push anti-people, anti-community, anti-environment measures in the guise of "conservatism" (Barry Goldwater disowned them) are doing dangerous stuff.
So, what do we do about this? Well, one thing is to identify the good guys and the bad guys so we can vote in an informed way this fall. The article was good in that way, but had an important omission. Rep. Andy Nichols (District 13, Tucson) has been one of the most consistent and reliable champions of people and environment in the legislature. A public health physician at the University of Arizona, he has always been pro-people and pro-environment. He has consistently received "A" ratings from the Sierra Club and other organizations during his eight years of service at the legislature. He and Rep. Herschella Horton (District 14, Tucson) have been Tucson's environmental advocates on the House Environmental Committee for years.
Nichols was one of the most outspoken critics of the "supermajority" anti-wildlife bill that Vanderpool's article discussed. He has also been the leading advocate of solar energy and related measures and has been very effective in working with reasonable legislators on both sides of the aisle to get some very good legislation passed.
Andy's the kind of guy who works hard and lets other people take credit, but I think it's time he was more widely recognized for the really fine work he has done for Tucson and the state. I also mention this because the District 13 Senate race is one of the most crucial ones for Tucsonans in the coming election. His opponent, Kathleen Dunbar, received an "F" and a "D" from the Sierra Club for her two years in the legislature.
I live in District 13. This district has elected some of the best and most effective environmental champions, both Democrat and Republican, that have ever served in the legislature. I, for one, would be very disappointed to see us choose anyone less than that to represent us. Thanks again for your coverage of environment, people and community issues. Keep up the good work!
Sunnyside DownTo the Editor,
I agree with many of your comments in The Skinny, but sometimes, as in your column in the June 8 issue, your total racism shows through. Your article about the Sunnyside School Board and how they voted for the new superintendent was ridiculous. If Ned Norris was a white yuppie he would have been described as the CEO of So and So. But instead, he's the "big man of Tohono O'odham gambling halls." Give me a break--like it's not a bunch of white retired people frequenting these "gambling halls."
As a graduate of Sunnyside Schools, and a white person in a Mexican neighborhood, I take offense at your attitude. Sunnyside is not Nogalesäand even though Bejarano was fine for Nogales doesn't mean he's fine for Sunnyside. Your stereotyping of the southside, and especially Sunnyside, is not only lame, it's downright embarrassing. Do the words tolerance or equality mean anything anymore?!
Act UpTo the Editor,
I read Gary P. Nabhan's "Tree of Life" (June 8) with delectable eagerness for finding the aspects that I considered important on such a vital issue, as "palo fierro" is indeed.
Hopefully all necessary actions by governments, scientists, developers, ranchers, conservationist associations and activist groups will be promptly and effectively done to ensure the preservation of life in Arizona. But let me take out a main concern on the matter as a whole. There is no simple place in the entire Sonora and Baja, California, immensity where regulations and ecological cares have actually been taken. And, once again, as with many others subjects, initiatives and due follow-up actions belong to Arizona and U.S. institutions and advocates. Just remember: Man sets limits up and builds fences, but Mother Nature does not recognize them.
Musical MourningTo the Editor,
OK, after 10 years of reading The Weekly, and telling myself "I'm gonna write the editor 'bout that," I've finally got to.
There is something missing in the Tucson music scene. Yes, I agree that we tend to romanticize the past, but don't let that get in the way of seeing things as they are. I'm not saying everything sucks. (OK, get me drunk enough, and I will say that.) I realize there are bright spots in 7 Black Cats, The Rialto, Solar Culture, Double Zero, and even Nimbus. I agree wholeheartedly with what you wrote about "inventing some madness of our own," and I've been trying to do just that--but whattaya do when nobody wants to listen?
I believe the problem doesn't lie so much in the venues and the music as it does with the increasingly apathetic response musicians seem to get from audiences. In the past I've been a part of two successful (by Tucson standards) bands, and I've also been a part of projects that hit the skids before they even got off the ground. I'm tellin' ya--nobody wants to go out and see local music these days. I'm currently trying to get a band off the ground, and I'm flat-out discouraged by the lack of an audience. I see this not only at my own shows, but at other shows I attend. I see the same handful of people at the same bars, and the truth is, most aren't even there for the music, they're there to drink. And most of them have bands of their own.
I've lived here for 10 years now, and it seems the glory days are over. Perhaps it's part of the stigma of downtown--fewer and fewer patrons and merchants want to be a part of it. Perhaps it's a sign of the musical times. A majority of college kids (who are the foundation of most "underground" music) don't want to hear alternative or punk or what-have-you anymore. They want to hear pre-packaged beats as loud as possible. How many people have heard The Electric Eliminators or Last Call Brawlers? These are two bands, in my opinion, who are carrying on the tradition of Tucson's downtown music scene. In past years, they would not be playing to empty bars.