Continue Discussion of InsuranceTo the Editor,
Thank you for the article about Mark Fontes ("We Will Survive," Currents, Jan. 22). I am writing not because of the article, but because of the note after the article.
It mentions that Mark Fontes does not have health insurance. This is no small problem, as I'm sure you're aware. So many of this city's young (and elderly and middle-aged) people are living without health insurance. It is an abomination, and we have to do something about it.
There are so many options, too many to record here, but PLEASE can we PLEASE continue this discussion? The only thing more heartbreaking than homophobic violence is a rich and powerful country that says, "Now how are you gonna pay for it?"
--Clare Sutcliffe Cecil
Cursing Shouldn't Have Been QuotedTo the Editor,
Once again, I find Chris Limberis lacking in judgement and fairness.
In his article about Kathleen Williamson's legitimate and widely shared views on the destructive aspects of noise emanating from military aircraft in an urban area ("Disturbing the Peace," Currents, Jan. 29), the "reporter" has chosen to emphasize her use of everyday vernacular words--a betrayal of trust.
Some of us often use clarifying abbreviated expletives during interviews with the clear and pre-stated understanding that they won't be included in print. Williamson is a rapid thinker and talker, but she also has a helluva lot more formal training and discretion than most.
Limberis is not devoid of talent, but he's a little weak in the judgement/discretion department.
--Martha B. Hopkins
Need to Fight FeesTo the Editor,
Thank you for publishing "It's a Fee Country" by Puanani Mench (Currents, Feb. 5). On Feb. 6, the Department of Interior--once again bypassing public input--administratively authorized provisions from HR 3283. What does this mean for us, the public? Effective April 6, there will be a $5,000 fine for non-compliance to the Fee Demo program on BLM lands.
We are being robbed! We must not forget we are owners of our public lands. Go to www.aznofee.org for more information.
Arizona No Fee Coalition
Libertarians Just Don't Get ItTo the Editor,
My first impression of the rant by David McKnight and Richard Euchner ("Arrest, Not Development," Opinion, Feb. 5) was that anything that sophomoric had to have been written by sophomores. It's worse: It turns out they were a couple of Libertarian Party types, including the local chairman who's also an attorney.
Many Libertarians have the annoying habit of suddenly noticing that freedom is disappearing and that the sky is falling. Dudes, great portions of the sky already fell: Somewhere between the Civil War and FDR, lots of bad things happened.
And some good. People of a certain color now get to vote. Those persecuted 18 year olds McKnight and Euchner whine about can now buy porn and not worry about being drafted or attending compulsory ROTC in college.
The authors not only fail to impress us with the magnitude of the problem of booze deprivation, but exhibit an almost total lack of knowledge about how government actually works.
They dislike the law setting the drinking age at 18, and find having different ages of legal maturity for different items incongruous. But they neither propose specific changes nor point out more inconsistent examples of age restrictions, choosing to squander a case many of us sympathize with by bitching about the law enforcement personnel who ENFORCE the laws they object to.
They also claim it was somehow illegal (and "unconstitutional") for the police to conduct a search for which they possessed a search warrant! Huh?
They seem unable to differentiate between the Tucson Police Department and the Pima County Sheriff's Office and berate Sheriff Clarence Dupnik with a non-specific charge of "covering up wrongdoing." When and where? They go bonkers over a DUI case where the suspect was tasered by sheriff's personnel, and then fail to report that the practice was stopped after this incident.
Finally, their call for political action is aimed at the wrong place and for the wrong reason. They want voters to dump the sheriff and county attorney (leaving the mayor and City Council who run the TPD alone) for the offense of NOT selectively enforcing laws.
Civil Liberties 101, bozos: The BIGGEST complaint against cops and prosecutors is selective prosecution. Politics IA: If you don't like the law, un-elect the folks who make it. They are called "state legislators."
Please note that I spent six years on the National Committee of the Libertarian Party from 1979-1985, and my wife is employed by the Pima County Sheriff's Department. (Also, Mr. Franzi is a longtime Weeklycontributor.)