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June 12, 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.J-Town Shooting — A PoemPeace (not)Armed menJeeps and HumveesViolencePeople wonderWhy?Edwin S. Foote, LouisvilleAn Honest ManI cannot deeply enough express my gratitude that you ran a short piece on the death of Joey Broughman, a friend of mine for many years (LEO, June 6). He was indeed a great musician, but that had little or nothing to do with his overall excellence as a human being. The fact that he did indeed work for Keith Richards should speak volumes. As well as anyone (even Bob himself), Joey understood the meaning of Dylan’s line: “to live outside the law you must be honest.” Thanks again.Paul Kopasz, LouisvilleFirst Amendment LimitsAs I read the article about the arrest of Carol Trainer (LEO, June 6), I was reminded of something every lawyer and police officer knows along with those who study such things: Eyewitnesses are notoriously unreliable. The fact that even some who share Trainer’s view appear to contradict her version makes this even clearer. If her version is true, then the officer was out of line; however, if the versions of others are true, then he appears to have acted properly. The problem with this situation is that many people seem to be viewing it through their political positions and not just on what happened. While I may disagree with Trainer, if she was in fact arrested because of her political opinions, then everyone conservative and liberal should be concerned. But, if the officer’s version is true, he was merely following the law. The First Amendment does have limits, and one is assaulting a police officer.   Kent O. Sublett, LouisvilleTunnel VisionI am one of the “group of men standing nearby” in your photos/article, and whoever told you that we were taunting her (Carol Trainer) is misleading you! My friend, with his hands together, was pleading with her to calm down and avoid arrest. I did ask the heavy-set woman with the camera and cowboy hat why she took no pictures of Trainer trying to kick the officers in the crotch, which she did several times.Trainer was rude to anyone who didn’t like her sign, and she acted in a way that left them no option but to arrest her. I’m very curious that with so many cameras around, no one took pictures of her swinging or kicking at the security/sheriffs.Shawn Roddy, LouisvillePolite Protest PleaseAnyone who has spent any time at all around these so-called war protestors knows the truth. They are rude and don’t consider any view but their own. I spent 33 weeks walking apposed to them on Lexington Road across from Holy Spirit Catholic Church. I was called names by them, and had one of them who I won’t name and who I actually like, try to provoke me into a fight. After asking them several times to move their signs from the sidewalk, a safety hazard, they called the police on me for walking on their signs. On one other occasion, a very rude lady called the police on me after I spoke harshly to her after she jumped in my face on three occasions. The truth of the matter is, they would be treated with respect if they treated those of opposite views with respect. They also provoked several people who were simply trying to go to church by blocking their way. I suggested they move their protest to the Federal Building or some other, more appropriate location. This is my opinion based on 33 weeks of close-up dealings with this same group.Joseph R. Van Vactor, LouisvilleRole Models MissingI enjoyed the article on the issues of hip hop and rap and thought Ricky L. Jones touched on a number of very important themes in current black culture that should be expounded upon (LEO, May 30). I would like to point out, though, that the anti-intellectualism, apolitical, violence, greed, materialism and social frivolity mentioned are certainly pervasive in American youth as a whole today, not just African-American culture. The hedonistic tendencies so embraced by young people stem from a severe lack of quality role models in our pop culture, as well as so many parents who are content not to take an active role in their children’s lives. It was not that long ago that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. preached his message of non-violence and hope for a brighter future, but it seems like the true wisdom of his teachings have been totally lost on younger generations. Maybe the progress of the civil rights movement that was so recently won back in the ’60s has been taken for granted to some extent. If parents would be more vigilant in imparting the values that true happiness does not come from materialistic goals but from helping others, these trends would start declining. As much of a role that hip hop, rap and the media play in our values as a society, the ultimate responsibility falls on the parenting or lack thereof.

Matthew H. Russell, LouisvilleDoin’ the BusThank you so much for Stephen George’s article concerning his car-less experiment (LEO, May 16). As a 44-year-old who has never owned a car, navigating the city by other means comes as second nature to me. There are a few things, however, that I should point out: First of all, if he had taken other TARC bus routes, he would have seen that the ridership is very ethnically and racially diverse. It just so happens he only wrote about one of the routes that serves the West End, which, unfortunately, displays Louisville’s less-than-heterogeneous racial makeup. He should try riding the 29 Eastern Parkway from Shively past U of L to the Oxmoor Center. Also, 23 Broadway from Shawnee Park to Jeffersontown and the 18 Preston from Valley Station to Downtown to the Outer Loop. I’ve always felt that for a city the size of Louisville, we have an extremely good bus system. Of course, we still need light rail if we are to grow and become more ecologically conscious. Also, he failed to mention the fact that all TARC buses are equipped with bike racks, which hold up to two bikes. A month ago, I started riding a six-speed three-wheeled bike, which, unfortunately, will not fit on these bike racks. However, I am content with riding the bus only when I need to venture far from home. George also failed to discuss recreational (bike) riding. Personally, I am finding great joy in riding Cherokee Park’s Scenic Loop. And, needless to say, I am getting into shape quickly.I hope he’ll stick with it and keep readers informed on his continuing adventure.James K. Baldwin, Louisville