August 3 - August 9, 1995


Chariots Of The Gods

To the Editor,
Regarding your recent four-part series on UFOs (Tucson Weekly, June 29-July 13): I think it was Nietzsche who made some crack about "2,000 years going by and no new God." If only the Nietz was still alive to philosophize about the newest "God-Aliens."

There are so many parallels between God and aliens, it makes my brain hurt.

First, as usual, there's no real proof either entity exists. It's just a matter of faith. Second, both are considered the "creators" of humans: God created us in 4004 BC, 10 a.m. Greenwich time, and aliens supposedly deposited our DNA into primordial seas a few billion years ago. Third, they both put on a hell of a light show when they appear. Fourth, both God and aliens like to play rough with humans. Aliens travel millions of light years just to stick a probe up someone's asshole and God condemns the whole human race for eating a piece of fruit. Fifth, they both control nature. Aliens like to beam things and God likes to do the fire and brimstone thing. Lastly, neither of them has any respect for women. Aliens often rape their female captives while God refuses them any real participation in his many churches.

Maybe Nietzsche was right, God is really dead and willed his dominion to aliens. There's only a few real believers, but wait, the Yahewist was a small group in the beginning. Do you think they had a museum?
--Deborah Bird

Safety First

To the Editor,
"Is it safe?" Mari Wadsworth asks in her description of a Guatemalan getaway ("Going South," Tucson Weekly, July 20). Her traveling companion replied "Of course, it's perfectly safe." But if Mari had asked that question of some other people around her in Guatemala, she would have gotten a much different answer and her article might have presented a much more accurate picture of life in that country.

She might have asked American citizen Jennifer Harbury, in Guatemala to find the body of her husband, who was killed by the Guatemalan military with the aid of the CIA. For Efrain Bamaca Velasquez, Guatemala was far from safe, and Jennifer herself has been threatened.

Or Mari might have walked to Casa Alianza, a couple of doors away from Hotel Chalet Suizo, and asked Covenant House workers how safe Guatemala is for children. Hundreds of the more than 10,000 youngsters who have no home but the street are killed each year by the police.

If Mari's trip was recent, she might have asked the families of the 52 people gunned down in execution-style killings between May 15 and 31, 1995, how safe Guatemala is. Or she might have checked with the Guatemalan Human Rights Commission, which last year recorded 239 executions, 36 disappearances, 311 death threats and 111 cases of torture. Because of the upcoming presidential elections, figures for each of these categories have soared in recent months.

Many more instances of torture, murder and death threats could be cited, suggesting that Guatemala's record of human rights violations is one of the worst in the world. To ignore these facts, to be ignorant of the horrifying reality of daily life in Guatemala, and to promote it as a place for tourists to go for "a good time," is not only grossly callous, it is also dangerously irresponsible. I wouldn't have been surprised to read this article in either of the daily papers, but I had really thought the Tucson Weekly knew better.
--Florence V. Davis

Mari Wadsworth responds:

All propagandizing aside, you've misquoted me. The story opens with an anecdote borrowed from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: "Of course. IT's (the object in question) perfectly safe...WE'RE the ones in trouble," a tongue-in-cheek analogy for my Guatemalan experience. While I in no way defend Guatemala's human rights record, of which I am well aware, it is equally inaccurate to vilify an entire country based on the actions of a few. Guatemala's the ultimate "nice place to visit, wouldn't want to live there." Historically and currently, aggression aims primarily at Guatemala's residents, not its tourists--though it is incumbent upon travelers to remain abreast of events in (any) countries they plan to visit. Travel near the November presidential elections is admittedly unwise, as a call to the State Department travel advisory line would inform.

As for the "appropriateness" of travel to countries whose politics we disagree with: Ethical decisions are best decided by informed individuals, not editors or governmental bureaucrats.

Carry On

To the Editor,
Regarding Michael Metzger's comments about Kansas in "All You Can Ear Buffet" (Big Noise, July 27): Apparently, from the concert description, you have never listened to any Kansas material. I will admit that they do have the occasional power ballad on a couple of their albums, but that's about it. Try their first three albums (Kansas, Song For America, and Masque)--no ballads, lots of classical influence. Their latest album, Freaks of Nature, is fairly hard-rock type stuff. However, for a real thrill, listen to some of their old stuff. They were environmentalists and politically correct before it was in to be so.

I don't like reviewers that think that the couple of hits is representative of a group's entire catalog of music. Also, if you do go and see them live (I highly recommend it), you will not see old people standing on the stage. The lead singer, Steve Walsh (also with Streets) does acrobatics and gymnastics on stage. It really is quite a show for some 40-year-old men. I have seen them twice in Seattle, and they are far more exciting than Seattle grunge bands. (I do admit that one of their members became a 'fundie' Christian from hell, but he is no longer a part of Kansas.)

I would appreciate a more accurate description of concerts in the future.
--Michelle from Hell

Citizen Correspondent

To the Editor,
Haven't you given "legendary land speculator Don Diamond" enough free publicity yet? Unfortunately, it's guys like him that provide low-paying, slave-labor jobs. I am for a $10 minimum wage in this town--that way the people at Taco Bell might not spit in your burrito on your next visit.

Joe Bernick was right--you missed the ball again by not covering that very important issue (Letters, Tucson Weekly, July 6). And right on to Lisa Cole who exposed the UA as the self-serving snobs that they are.

It's a funny thing, guys, but many of your letter writers are much better journalists than you are. I realize that your paper is just an advertisement, but unfortunately in this sun-baked state of old folks being put out to pasture, your rag represents a voice of liberty. Do your duty and screw the UA to the wall they belong on.
--Jeff Lantham

Strip Tease

To the Editor,
Because negative reader response by a vocal minority has led newspapers to cancel many of my favorite features over the years, I feel compelled to write in support of your Flip Side comic by Pete Mueller.

It regularly makes me laugh out loud with its oblique, subtle humor. Occasionally I'll fail to understand a reference, but given my overall enjoyment of the strip, I'm willing to chalk that up to reader ignorance. This comic is a perfect example of the kind of quality entertainment that our Tucson daily newspapers won't touch. Please don't let a faithful reader down.
--Robert Loughman

Contents  Page Back  Last Week  Current Week  Next Week  Page Forward  QuickMap

August 3 - August 9, 1995

Weekly Wire    © 1995-97 Tucson Weekly . Info Booth