I am an 11-year-old Jew who goes to Hebrew school. We learned about the Holocaust and World War II. My studies taught me that 6 million Jews died.
After reading the article by Stephen Seigel in your Dec. 11 issue ("Yule Tunes"), which included the statement, "Incidentally, why does every Jew with a recording contract at one point or another feel compelled to turn out a Christmas Album?," I felt very angry about that anti-Semitic comment.
Next time, you should edit your newspaper before you let another anti-Semitic or racist comment get out in The Weekly.
Sometimes, you read things in newspapers and periodicals that strike you as pure fluff, because the person writing it simply couldn't come up with anything intelligent to say. Renee Downing's column on, well, essentially nothing, "Fear the Reaper" (Dec. 11), is one of these stories.
It's truly sad that someone with the ability to influence so many by writing an intelligent discourse chooses to throw her weight behind a mindless story full of B.S. trivia. In order to truly know what is going on in the Persian Gulf, the media is certainly the last place to look for the truth. Nothing is as it seems when it comes to the media, and the story is always slanted, depending on which direction that particular source leans.
For someone who has absolutely no affiliation or experience with the military, I find it enormously amusing to hear her opinion on military matters. It seems as if every time someone wants to create public outcry, they always lean on the Vietnam War for their crutch, as if that affiliation alone will rally people to their cause. As for the geography lesson, we've been in the Persian Gulf region for more than 20 years attempting to hold the peace together. It's unfortunate, but if she had been paying as close attention then as she seems to be doing now, then she might have heard of Basra or Nasiriya.
Next time, try voicing an opinion based on substance, and don't subject us to your aimless literary scrawl meandering across the ages that doesn't lead the reader anywhere.
--Jason M. Burger
In response Jim Nintzel's article, "Arrested Development" (Dec. 11), I must criticize Lt. Mike Pryor's logic. Any man with the vested power to enforce drinking laws should be able to give valid reasons for all the hype concerning underage drinking, considering Mr. Nintzel's quoted statistic showing that underage drinking among students has actually dropped.
Mr. Pryor says that inexperienced young drinkers do stupid and illegal things: They fight, steal, drive drunk, litter and disturb neighborhoods. Is he insinuating that middle-age drinkers don't fight, steal, drive drunk, litter, destroy and disturb? I invite anyone to walk down Fourth Avenue at closing time and note the exodus of unruly drunks stumbling to their cars. Do you think that all of these people, or even most of them, are underage?
Mr. Pryor goes on to say that young drinkers rape young women, and yet he has no idea what percentage of sexual assaults can actually be attributed to underage drinking. Likewise, am I supposed to blindly accept that the cops were right in surrounding El Charro's and demanding to see the patrons' identification? Was that even legal? These are important things that Nintzel neglected to mention.
Mr. Pryor's only valid argument is that underage drinking is illegal, but the laws aren't the issue. The issue is alcohol abuse and whether or not the laws have been effective.
I read your article about teenage drinking. One solution which will never be tried in the United States is the German system: Kids drink beer from the time they give up the nipple-bottle stuff. We raised our kids that way, and neither of them drinks anything but wine or beer and very modestly.
Another idea, which would require some minor changes in state law: We have an area outside of town with a big fence around it; the visitors would sign papers saying that the government is not responsible for anything that happens.
Inside the fence you could have drinking and fucking nights. Do anything you want to, but you can't get out until you pass a no-drunk test. It would be simple, low-cost and we would not have to bother trying to educate the idiots.
--Stuart A. Hoenig