Letters for November 19, 2009

Smoke and mirrors

Re “The Pot Issue” (Feature story, Nov. 5):

Remember the top three addictive and damaging drugs on Earth are 1) sugar 2) alcohol and 3) tobacco. All are legal and very profitable. It’s better for big business if it can keep the debate about a plant that anyone can grow. It’s like the magician’s trick of distraction. It works and always will work. Just ask any politician!

John Little

What’s up, doc?

Re “Soldier against the drug war” (15 Minutes, Nov. 12):

Dennis Myers asks “Why doesn’t the medical community get involved?” The answer, I think, is that docs are no different from other citizens: They are so busy living their own lives they don’t get involved, especially if involvement would expose them to the wrath of the enforcers. The metaphor I use is a herd of antelope being chased by lions. When the outliers get caught, the others run faster, thankful to be alive. The enforcers count on that. The real losers are chronic pain patients abandoned by their docs. Try Googling “Richard Paey” or “Siobhan Reynolds” or “Stephen Schnieder pain.”

John Chase
Palm Harbor, FL

Sacrificial lamb

Re “Bad” (Film, Nov. 5):

The film, in equal parts compelling, harrowing and moving—and not just because we know what was to follow—is worth watching if only to see what 16 years of sanctioned persecution looks like. The reviewer is correct in reminding us why this film has even come to be released in the first place. Michael Jackson’s early death was not a given. Only the most imperceptive would deny that the slow drip of the anesthetic that killed him was just a formality. What killed Jackson was the sustained trauma of being put through a baseless, protracted trial that should never have reached court, knowing that if he was found guilty he would be removed from his children’s lives. And even after acquittal, he faced the relentless vilification of the media, who decided to simply disregard a verdict they found economically inconvenient.

In years to come, perhaps reasons will emerge from the rubble as to why a supernovic talent with a history of unparalleled giving and a persona of complex innocence was systematically and willfully humiliated, tortured and stripped of his dignity and spirit for a period of over 15 years, on the basis of such astonishingly non-credible accusations. These days everybody has an opinion about Michael Jackson, myself included, but it can’t be denied that when one looks behind the hysteria induced by Tom Sneddon, Evan Chandler, Janet Arviso, Diane Dimond, Maureen Orth, The Smoking Gun and countless others who put career and copy before a human life, you end up with more of a collection of compelling questions than answers, and a more than seriously uneasy feeling of something being not quite right about the sheer level of engineered cruelty involved.

One day Jackson’s children will be confronted with the horrific and painful realities of the circumstances that drove their father to need to medicate himself in order to sleep. They will ask the questions their family is already dreading. They will ask why their father died and what led him there. They will ask what their father did that made an entire country not only turn their back on him, but effectively take away his rights as a human being. His children will deserve to know the answers to these questions.

Deborah Ffrench

Up in smoke

Re “Nevada NORML office implodes” (Upfront, Nov. 12):

This article is so bad and incorrect. You need to research your facts before you go to print. While Beth is no longer with Nevada NORML, and I had left back in the spring of 2009, it surely had nothing to do with being ousted or anything of the sort. Beth started the Las Vegas Cannabis Club (www.lasvegascannabisclub.com) in order to help patients and to be able to support candidates for office that the National NORML does not allow from their state chapters. This was strictly a personal decision in order to better help Nevadans.

Billy Soloe
Las Vegas

Home, sweet home

Re “This Toxic House” (Feature story, Oct. 22):

You do not know what instructions Bank of America gave the agent. Your article implies that the first offer did not have a deposit check as you mention the deposit check only on the second offer. The bank may have instructed her to only present offers with deposit checks. The bank received an offer and accepted it. They instructed her to not present any more offers. Your article implies that an accepted offer can be overridden by a higher offer. The bank could then be sued by the person who had the accepted offer. This article just sounds likes sour grapes from someone who did not get his offer accepted. You do not know how many offers were presented. You do not know what offer was accepted. You do not know what criteria the bank used on this property.

Matt Kofsky

Love your neighbor

Re “Letter plus insight” (Letters to the editor, Nov. 12):

Cary Cochran criticized prostitution and its “glorification” in the recent Best of Northern Nevada issue.

I, too, recently moved here, from Oklahoma. I immediately embraced Reno as a diverse center of arts and learning, a kind of sampling of some of the cultural fares offered in any big city. This area offers a marketplace of ideas from which anyone is free to sample, take what they like, and leave the rest. It is a place to come to know a wide variety of people from all different backgrounds and from them receive valuable insight and ideas—if one is willing to have an open mind.

I applaud Reno for its efforts to continually improve the experience it may offer to visitors and residents alike. I applaud the RN&R for its efforts to provide a diverse and tolerant newspaper, a catalogue of places and things that Northern Nevada citizens celebrate and cherish!

When I observed that Anna Suvari won so many titles, I Googled her to learn about her. I’m very proud of this person of my gender who is so accomplished. Did Cary Cochran take any time to learn anything about her before passing such a judgment? I wonder. She is an inspiration to me! How can that be, you ask? She is a hooker. Well, I receive inspiration from her because she is obviously proud, working hard every day to improve herself for the benefit of others and herself. I don’t understand how that can be considered bad.

Mary Magdalene was a prostitute, good enough for the company of Jesus. I think if a hooker can be good enough for Jesus, we might want to lower ourselves enough to let him/her be good enough for us!

I can’t speak for the mentality of my fellow Nevadans, but I can tell you mine: I would much rather be surrounded by people who concentrate on themselves and the pursuit of whatever walk of life it is that interests them. Continually learning and moving forward with an open mind and an open heart. A community of people who recognize the accomplishments (talents, beauty, art, discovery) of their fellow Nevadans and feel proud to call them neighbors.

Brionna Humes
Sun Valley