Letters for October 18, 2007

Soul food
Re “Soul Survivors” (Filet of Soul, Oct. 4):

As I sat and pondered the “Soul Survivors'” response to the greatest moral crisis of our time yesterday, I couldn’t help but both completely agree and completely disagree at the same time. The greatest moral crisis of our time is in fact a human rights crisis. It is definitely a crisis of perspective. And finally, yes, community has been replaced almost exclusively by ego as a result of this crisis.

However, the greatest moral crisis of our time is the loss of humanity’s connection to the psychedelic experience through tryptamine-based plants animals and fungi. This vital shamanic connection has been replaced by the imprisonment of the mind, body and soul through monotheistic, masculine dominant, politically motivated religious belief systems.

For tens of thousands of years, humanity’s communion with the Divine was through shamanic use of tryptamine-based plants and fungi containing compounds such as psilocybin.

Through these compounds, access to absolute freedom of the body, mind and souls was possible. It was here within their own minds, that they found safety, wisdom, truth and universal love. It is here within our own minds and bodies that these virtues still lie.

We must simply re-establish this vital connection with the psychedelic experience through the plants and fungi in our current ecosystems. They have been bestowed upon humanity for a reason, regardless which belief system you prescribe to.

Ben Chavez

Comic relief
Re “You like me. You really like me.” (Right Hook, Oct. 4):

Congratulations to Mike Lafferty! Yes, you have won an award that you no doubt deserve, but yet again, you have faulty facts and/or logic. In your title and Sally Fields’ quote you state, “You like me.” I assume (perhaps erroneously) that “you” meant the readership of the RN&R. Actually, winning the award means that the Nevada Press Association likes you and not that you have won the hearts of The Readership. In fairness, I must say that I do love reading your column and laugh hysterically every time that I do. In fact, I laugh even more than when I watch the Colbert Report because I think you actually believe what you’re saying (if not, please don’t spoil it for me).

Michael Crognale

It doesn’t invalidate your point, but you might want to know that the Nevada Press Association awards each year are judged by a different state’s press association, to avoid personal rivalries or other factors from influencing the results. This year, Arizona judged the entries.Change course
As a Vietnam veteran, I am disheartened with President Bush’s refusal to change the course of the Iraq War. Many Nevada veterans are rejecting this war, one that has no hope of military victory. Sounds like Vietnam all over again.

The situation in Iraq is rapidly becoming a stalemate. Veterans of the Korean and Vietnam wars remember the stalemates that concluded these two conflicts. They remember comrades that gave their lives during these stalemates. They remember the 38,000 Vietnam casualties during the five-year stalemate that ended in a tie. Is a dead American soldier worth a tie?

President Bush announced he will withdraw 30,000 troops from Iraq by next summer. What is magic about next summer? These reductions were going to happen anyway.

Sen. Clinton has stated that taking credit for this troop reduction is like taking credit for the sun rising in the morning. She has a clear view that there is no military solution to the civil crisis in Iraq.

This civil war must be settled by the people of Iraq before any democracy building can be achieved. As President, Senator Clinton will urge appointment of a high level U.N. representative to help broker peace among the tribes. The Iraqis could develop an equitable distribution of oil revenues, so that everyone gets their fair share and start feeling like they have a stake in their country’s future.

Many Nevada veterans believe this sound plan is the first step in restoring our moral and strategic leadership in the world, one that draws on the strength of our alliances and the power of our diplomacy and uses military force as a last—not a first—resort.

Chuck Fulkerson
via e-mail

Best princess ever
Re “Which Disney princess would you be?” (Streetalk, Oct. 4):

I just read the Streetalk column that was asked people which Disney princess they would be. I noticed one guy said he would be Cinderella because she was American and that little girls should look up to American princesses because there is too much foreign influence in the country. I’d like to point out that Cinderella was not American. Although the story is popular in many forms in many countries, the most popular version—the one Disney illustrated—is French. Cendrillon was her name. I think little girls will have a hard time finding any American princesses to look up to, seeing how our country has never been a monarchy. The closest one I can think of in Disney terms would be Pocahontas since she was after all, a Native American. This gentleman who thought Cinderella was American mentioned that we need to stay close to our roots, but if you really think about it, most of us Americans will find our roots back in Europe anyway, so why shouldn’t little girls be able to look up to Cinderella? Because she’s French? Oui?

Owen Bryant