The pain’s the same
I read with astonishment Keith A. Owens’ column trumpeting the promise of the Kilpatrick administration ("Kilpatrick’s promises: smoke & character," Metro Times, Jan. 9-15). Weeks before, the same columnist vehemently opposed discrimination and bigotry in all forms, going to the extreme of using the word "nigger" to drive his point home. Presumably he is aware of the comments Kilpatrick made about homosexuals on a religious talk show. By his endorsement of and alignment with Kilpatrick, it is presumed that he adopts those attitudes or does not realize the weight that those comments carried. Owens also appears to reflect the mindset of the majority of the voters in Detroit, that those comments didn’t matter. It appears that the black voters in Detroit never considered that the pain Kilpatrick caused to gays and lesbians is the same pain that has been inflicted on them through prejudice and bigotry. I have recently read that Kilpatrick has disputed this and has said that the struggle for gay people is different than the struggle for African-Americans. I can’t comment as I do not know how it is to be a black man. But on a recent episode of "In The Life" a gay black male activist was quoted as saying "I have been called a nigger and I have been called a faggot; it’s the same thing." —Christopher Jackson, Detroit
Sometimes I forget where your market truly is. Then I happened upon the lovely new feature "Abandoned House of the Week" (News Hits, Metro Times, Jan. 9-15), and was quickly reminded where the majority of your advertising dollars must come from: outside the City of Detroit. Isn't this sort of feature so "Devil's Night?" Do people still really get off on the "failure of Detroit?" How sad, when there are so many individual solutions to the problems of our city. Rather than mocking these problems from afar, it would behoove all of us, even suburbanites, to work toward a solution. Volunteer for Greening of Detroit, Habitat for Humanity, the DIA. Buy one of these diamonds in the rough and fix it up.
Let's get beyond the smug feeling of security from those west of Telegraph and north of Eight Mile addresses, where Detroit's demise can be watched in safety. Like it or not, we are all in this together, and I would hope the Metro Times would promote solutions to our current situation rather than pointing out the results of our mistakes without placing them into the appropriate context. I know you guys can do better than that.
Plus, won't you run out of cute little tongue-in-cheek euphemisms like "airy" fairly soon? —Kelli B. Kavanaugh, Detroit
Awake and dreaming
Kudos to Melissa Giannini for her entertaining article on Slumber Party ("Up all night," Metro Times, Dec. 26, 2001-Jan 1., 2002), who played a set I greatly enjoyed on New Year’s Eve. I enjoyed the Slumber Party article and am moved by their music. I was glad to see a long-overdue feature on this fine band. —Frank Bartlo, email@example.com, Detroit
If you question the "America as a family" line of thought ("Stars, stripes & doubts," Metro Times, Dec. 26, 2001-Jan 1., 2002), just remember our age of psychotherapy and remind yourself that families can be dysfunctional, but we manage to survive them, and love them anyway. —Erin Rasmussen, Portland, Ore.
The News Hits item "Kudos for Conyers" (Metro Times, Jan. 9-16) should have referred to Elizabeth Hacker as a judge for the Executive Office for Immigration Review. The office is independent of the Immigration and Naturalization Service which represents the government in cases before immigration judges.