Letters for October 6, 2005

Straight up
Re “Sideways!” (Cover story, Sept. 22):

Great piece.

R.V. Scheide’s article on the AMA Red Bull Supermoto A-Go-Go was great. Just perfect. My sentiments exactly. It’s nice to see you guys supporting and promoting the event, and sharing the vision of what it could become. I’ve been hoping for this to become a regular event in Reno ever since last year.

Douglas Harvey

Picture this
Re “Picture George and Laura” (Letters, Sept. 1):

Although he rejects the term “homophobic” for himself, the writer’s use of semantics to justify it seems pretty transparent. He’s not homophobic but finds the idea of two men having intercourse “disgusting and unhealthy.” I’d rather think about two men together any day rather than a heterosexual couple, filled with narrow-mindedness and intolerance, following their biological urges. All heterosexuals have “normal” sex, right?

He asks people to disregard the possibility that homosexuality is based in genetics because he is so positive that “humans are not made to vent their lust” with the same sex. I’m not a biologist or psychologist, but it seems that the center does not hold in that argument. Are we “made” to kill or rape others (same or opposite sex)? Some people do.

I’m tired of his arguments and those who agree with him. Homosexuality may not be “normal” in the dictionary sense of “conforming with an accepted standard,” but the reason we continue to hold Gay Pride celebrations is that not everyone is this country has to be “normal.” It would make for a very bland existence if we applied that standard to all aspects of our society; going to only “normal” restaurants, having only “normal” movies or books to pick from. There are those who will always seek to prevent homosexuals from becoming accepted and therefore normal. Cheers to the RN&R for publishing differing views, as that is essential to our society.

Pamela Williard

More media undercoverage
Re “Where were you?” (Editorial, Sept. 15):

One of the most ignored stories related to the Katrina disaster is the plight of thousands of immigrants along the Gulf Coast. Here are the facts:

Among the Gulf Coast hurricane victims are tens of thousands of immigrants, including 30,000 undocumented people working in restaurants and other trades.

Their plight has received relatively little media attention.

An unknown number of immigrant families lost everything as a result of the hurricane and are destitute.

Almost 200,000 immigrants in the New Orleans region alone can’t get government aid in the form of Social Security checks or housing assistance.

The Department of Homeland Security has stated that immigrants are not immune from deportation when they provide required information for government aid.

We have all seen the devastation brought about by Katrina, and our government should act now to ensure that no immigrant child or adult is forced to be homeless or hungry as a result.

Destiny Smith

Burning Guy
Re “Thanks for fearless coverage” (Letters, Aug. 25):

This is in response to the letter from Guy Farmer regarding press coverage of Burning Man vs. Hot August Nights. I feel I can comment as I have extensive connections with both events each year. I wonder if Mr. Farmer can make the same claim.

Here are some facts as I have seen them:

Financial impact: HAN sells out a weekend of hotel nights. Great business for the casino industry. Lots of gas station business. Burning Man? Ask the manager of Winco Foods or any other grocery store about its impact. Ask the managers of Home Depot or Lowe’s about sales to BM organization and participants. Or Twin City Surplus. Oh yes, and the gas stations where people fill up before the Playa. The hotels in town get a few rooms sold before and after BM as well.

The $8 million gross to a non-profit? What do you think pays for the police and fire presence, including medical service and evacuations? BM also pays to clean up after the event, earning rave reviews from the Bureau of Land Management.

Public Safety: HAN crowds the streets of Reno for a week, making life difficult for many citizens. BM crowds Gerlach for a week, providing a huge economic impact on the town. As for intoxication, not everyone who goes to Burning Man is a dope-addled freak. Besides, which is more inherently dangerous: 10 people giggling in their tents in the desert, or one person over the .08 limit on free casino drinks driving a muscle car around town?

Kids: I don’t often see many kids downtown for HAN, a few here and there. Same goes at BM, but the ones I see at Kid’s Camp look like they’re having a blast.

If Mr. Farmer is indeed a journalist, perhaps he might venture out to the playa next year with an objective eye and report back on events, both “positive and negative.”

Tom Plunkett