I appear white, and usually, on the additional affirmative-action form that one voluntarily fills out as part of a job application, I state that I am white. I am actually a mutt--Irish, Cherokee Indian, French, German and God knows what else.
What I can say with complete confidence is that I am an individual. I don't write in horror about other people's perceived assumptions of me and whether or not I view my skin color as some sort of mark of superiority over people of color. I might definitely state my IQ of 156, or my master's degree as indications that I don't fit in the average of ANY society, but those facts are incidental, not integral.
As far as Mexican culture, I am in total agreement that it has contributed greatly to the look and feel of Tucson. However, to state that it is the sole contributor is to indicate that you are either new to the area or don't get out much. The Fox Theatre is a stunning example of West Coast art-deco architecture. The interior of the Wells Fargo bank downtown is a beautiful example of East Coast architectural influences.
As far as Mexican culture, it has its drawbacks. Have you ever lived near a park where a Mexican music festival is in progress? Of the 10 songs I heard, nine were all in the same key, and were all polkas.
I would encourage you to educate yourself about this city. The Mexican culture has enriched it immeasurably. But to say that Tucson would have no culture without Mexican influences is idiotic, unless you enjoy nine polkas in a row, all in the key of C, all sung by people who could impersonate air-raid sirens on their days off.
First, he "reports" the situation of Salpointe High student Andrew Berryhill's petition to play sports in his fifth year of high school. Danehy mentions that the Star and Citizen each ran stories about Berryhill's scenario, but writes that "both papers missed the most important point: This is his fifth year of high school."
If Danehy read the Star before making false claims, he would have read in the Aug. 9 Star sports page that "(Berryhill) is awaiting an Arizona Interscholastic Association ruling on his eligibility because this year will mark his fifth in high school." It's right here on my coffee table, Tommy Boy! I can send you a copy, since you didn't see it the first time.
Then Danehy suggests that the local newspapers are "tiptoeing" around the situation because they don't want to deal with Berryhill's mom. Maybe they didn't want to drag up the fact that a then-14-year-old kid had a run-in with a teacher. You, on the other hand, were quick to talk about the issue (which is now a non-issue) four years after it happened. Give the kid a break.
By the way, you are ugly.
They most certainly do not "cheapen" it, as John Sedwick of the Fourth Avenue Merchants Association suggests ("Hidden Meanings," Currents, Sept. 8). Do the City Council members really believe the local economy is doing so well that they can pass an ordinance to put 1,000 micro-enterprises out of business? It is not appropriate to threaten the economic livelihoods of so many hard working people in order to regulate those who have been the source of complaints.
It is probably true that, without our initial support, our friend never would have been able to run for president of Peru. But there are hundreds, if not thousands, of returned Peace Corps volunteers, some of whom I know personally, who were much more successful in their educational, community development, technical and other activities in the Peace Corps than we were. And then, of course, there is Alejandro Toledo himself, whose potential was obvious to us from the get-go, when he was 17 and we were 22, and who would have succeeded in one way or another, with us or without us.
Joel S. Meister