Letters for October 7 

Readers sound off on the slow-food movement, the BART connector, and Energy 92.7.

Page 2 of 4

Rachel, I guess you've never listened to the Velvet Underground. If you had, you might understand the difference between "heroin" and "heroine," which was misused twice in your review.

Kevin Walsh, Emeryville

"Beginning or End," Music, 9/9

I Heard It Was Great, Man

Poor Poor old codger Ed Ward, complaining forty years later about a concert he missed! Like Ed, I also didn't attend, but had friends from Texas who hitched a ride, bought tickets, and didn't whine about the gate crashers. Their returning stories were not at all like Ward's students. One woman friend smiled in remembrance of Jimi Hendrix, "I sacrificed my ears to him."I think you can't review Woodstock without mentioning the year 1969 — a fierce year for Vietnam and Black Power, and in the wake of assassinations of many of our heroes. Peace and Love in 1969??? C'mon now! It was in 1969 that my own father reversed his patriotic views on Vietnam and the youth as well ... and my next door neighbor, a Marine, told me to apply for a CO.Ed Ward is right about following attempts at replication. We live in a capitalist world and you can't simply declare a socialist world. The demand for free music is akin to the demand for free food and shelter; and even under socialism, someone must pay.But there was something about Woodstock! Santana's blistering set was absolutely astonishing ... what? Mixing BB King and Tito Puente? Can it be done? Country Joe's antiwar anthem was sung to a choir of 500,000 voices in unison. Janis. Grace. Richie Havens, folk, rock, and blues ... the whole of Woodstock was greater than the sum of its parts.Ed Ward has been a prominent blues and pop music critic for many years. It's important to not over-romanticize about any music event ... but I think he and George Clinton both missed something about Woodstock.

Ted Michaels, Albany

"A Slippery Slope into Oblivion," Letters, 9/9

Know Your History

In Greg Sullivan's letter of September 9, he opposes gay marriage on the grounds that it contributed to the fall of the Roman Empire. He's entitled to his anti-homosexual sentiments, bigoted as they are, but I suggest that he actually familiarize himself with the history of the empire (at least through Gibbon et al, if not primary sources), rather than blithely repeating some nonsense he picked up somewhere.Laws against consensual homosexuality were first made in the post-Constantinian empire; Constantine, as I'm sure Mr. Sullivan is aware, was the emperor who "normalized" (to borrow a term beloved by anti-gay bigots) Christianity in the empire, starting the Roman Empire down its path into morphing into the Roman Catholic Church, which was of course the period of the empire's great decline.

Mike Andrews, San Francisco

"The Inside Scoop," Dining Review, 9/9

Psst ... It's in Oakland

I think that the BEST gelato is NOT in Berkeley but in (are you sitting down?) Oakland!  LUSH GELATO is just off Piedmont Avenue across from the theater. They don't have a gazillion flavors, but what they have is to die for! My favorite is chocolate hazelnut.

Pat Parker, Oakland

Advertisement, 9/16

Purposely Misleading

The "petition" on page 19 of the September 16-22, 2009 issue is purposely misleading. The Berkeley Daily Planet has been publishing letters from many sides of the issue of Israel's actions towards Palestinians, as any good newspaper should. The Israel Action Committee, however, cannot tolerate any criticism of Israel's policy and labels it anti-Semitic, similarly to the way the Bush conservatives labeled any criticism of the Iraq war as unpatriotic. In their attempt to silence the Daily Planet, this group has even been conducting a campaign of harassment against the Planet's advertisers.

Lest they label me as anti-Semitic also, let me say that both my parents are holocaust survivors who managed to flee to Palestine, where I was born. Many other family members, including my maternal grandparents, were killed by the Nazis. The consequences of this horrific anti-Semitism have greatly impacted my life. Because of this I cannot stand to see ANY ethnic group subjected to systematic abuse. I went to school in Israel as a child, and as an adult, worked there. My experiences have led me to conclude that anti-Arab and anti-Palestinian racism is rampant in Israel. It pains me that a people which has been oppressed in the recent past is now the oppressor, and therefore I support the Daily Planet, which has the courage to continue publishing the truth some people don't want to hear.

Naomi Rosenthal, Berkeley


Privatize Now! Ask Questions Later

Like so many other faculty, staff, and students of the University of California, we are extremely concerned by the pending privatization of the world's premiere public university. Yet, unlike the thousands of faculty, staff, and students whining over the direction in which certain elites are steering the UC, we at the UC Movement for Efficient Privatization (UCMeP) are deeply troubled by the snail's pace at which this inevitable transformation is proceeding.


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