Issue April 24, 2007

Erosia

LEO welcomes letters that are brief (250 words max) and thoughtful. Ad hominem attacks will be ignored, and we need your name and a daytime phone number. Send snail mail to EROSIA, 640 S. Fourth St., Louisville, Ky. 40202. Fax to 895-9779 or e-mail to leo@leoweekly.com. We may edit for length, grammar and clarity.

How Punk Was That?
Your recent cover story on Louisville’s original punk scene (LEO, April 18) left me sort of scratching my head. Not because of some of the facts-gone-wrong in the story, and not because, gee, it only took 25-odd years for that local scene to make the cover of the local freebie paper. What I found confusing was that given the article’s secondary slant on archival projects other than the upcoming Noise Pollution Bold Beginnings release (which, by the way, is an excellent listen — BUY IT!) there was no mention, beyond a tiny cover credit, of the scanning-party-gone-wild that resides at http://louisvillepunk.awardspace.com. This omission would perhaps be less egregious if not for the fact that the hi-res photos used in the story were provided by the site.
Culled from numerous personal archives, louisvillepunk is a vast compendium (however incomplete) of 850-plus images collecting photos, flyers, postcards, ’zines, paintings and other assorted detritus detailing the Louisville scene circa 1978-84. Get a copy of Bold Beginnings to get a taste of “this is what it sounds like,” and then go over to louisvillepunk.awardspace.com to get a gander of what it looked like.
Douglas Maxson
Editor’s note: Mr. Maxson is correct; he was instrumental in helping illustrate last week’s cover story, and we should’ve made that much clearer, along with our gratitude. The site to which he refers is important and fantastic.

Flyby Attitude

It would not be Thunder Over Louisville without a whiny left-winger throwing a temper tantrum over the military aircraft in the air show, sort of like having the dogwoods bloom. Ms. Marshall in her trite screed (LEO, April 18) repeats what is heard every year by those like her, and, as in most similar complaints, she overlooks two important facts. First, that the military flyovers are enjoyed by many if not most Thunder-goers. Of course, I’m sure like most of her breed, Marshall is self-righteous and believes she knows better than those who disagree with her and is superior to them. Second, she overlooks the fact that those planes represent the power that ensures she has the right to say and speak her opinion without being carted off to a prison camp or worse. As for the program in Iroquois Park, while nonviolent resolution of conflicts is generally preferable, I wonder what peacemaking techniques Marshall would have used with Hitler and the Japanese militarists of World War II. Their idea of peacemaking was “give me what I want or I will kill you and take it.” I would love to hear her answer.
Kent O. Sublett

What’s Wrong?
In response to Lucinda Marshall’s letter regarding Thunder (LEO, April 18), what is the “wrong signal” she refers to? That it is “wrong” to serve in the military? That it is “wrong” to serve your country in one of the oldest and most honorable way possible? That it is “wrong to defend what we have enjoyed for more than 230 years”?
What is “wrong,” Ms. Marshall, is the way the military is slandered by people like you. These fine men and women who serve are the ones you should be thanking for being able to write such twaddle.
My guess is that most people around the world love to see our aircraft because of what we have done for them. Some are grateful, some are not. The people who are frightened of our weaponry are probably the people we are trying to scare anyway.
As for military personnel themselves, they are not murderers. That is not what they “are.” They don’t arbitrarily drop bombs. They are just people with a job to do like you. I wonder how much you will make from the article you wrote. I would guess it is considerably more than most of these people make in a month.
Here is the “wrong signal,” Ms. Marshall: if you don’t thank and shake the hand of every military member you meet, every veteran you meet, every spouse of every military member and every widow of every veteran you meet. Those people have paid the price for the words you are able to write. There is nothing “wrong” about that.
Loren J. Rudd, Technical Sergeant,
U.S. Air Force (retired)

Humana Backlash

I must take exception to Sherry Deatrick and Rebecca Haithcoat’s strangely negative and disdainful assessment of the Humana Festival (LEO, April 11). We may differ in our reactions to specific plays — I, for one, cannot understand the vitriol directed at “Strike-Slip” by most reviewers, since I found it compelling from start to finish and since the mere existence of the superficially similar film “Crash” is irrelevant. But neither Deatrick/Haithcoat nor anyone else can predict whether any NEW play will “stand the test of time.” Because they’re NEW, you see.
They quote exactly ONE critic who actually says anything negative, mention another’s interest in bourbon, and omit any positive remarks from any of the other dozens of visiting critics. They assail Marc Masterson for saying what he gets paid to say. They claim that “many” (but unnamed) local playwrights could do better, but apparently these great artists don’t bother to submit their scripts. (If the six plays chosen were the best of more than 750 submitted, is it ATL’s fault that none were better?) But what really bothers me is that your writers come dangerously close to suggesting that Louisville would be better off without the Humana Festival at all. If this is how they feel, there are plenty of other towns without America’s premiere showcase for new plays. All of them, in fact.
Robert Lutz

Justified Smoke
I want to thank Jim Waters for his column about the looming smoking ban (LEO, April 11). I am a nonsmoker and I couldn’t agree with him more. If tobacco were illegal, the ban would be justified. I don’t see THAT ban going through anytime soon. If the market wants more/all nonsmoking venues, business owners will recognize the demand. If Metro government is so worried about our health risks, maybe they should ban all automobiles based on their emissions. Since Churchill Downs is exempt from the smoking ban, maybe they’ll offer masks (with paid admission) to nonsmokers who want to enjoy their $2 bets without the smoke.
Americans always pride themselves in the free market … when it’s convenient and there isn’t smoke in their eyes.
Dan Pike