White as a Sheet

To the Edtior,

The Tucson Weekly ought to know better than to print such blatant racism as found in Tom Danehy's "The White Stuff" [December 13]. Tom writes that Catalina High School must be the "whitest" school in Tucson because the students excel in golf, swimming and tennis. Then he implies that these sports are sub-standard because no minority student would want to participate in them. Last time I checked the news, black athletes were doing quite well in golf and tennis.

Most people would not declare what is the "blackest" school in Tucson and then follow up with a demeaning comment meant to put down the race. They wouldn't because they would realize how ignorant and racist it would be! So why don't Tom and his panel write about the "blackest" radio station in Tucson (KFMA being the whitest, according to them) and then make a comment about blacks that compares equally to "whites can't dance"? If you do it for one race then why not do it for another?

The Tucson Weekly and Tom Danehy should apologize for their remarks and then lose the hate and racism. It's all got to go!

--Anthony David Thompson

Fox and Bear

To the Edtior,

A few notes regarding "Rialto Ripples" [December 20]. We at the Fox Tucson Theatre Foundation have long supported the restoration and operation of the Rialto Theatre. As potential co-anchors of the revitalized "entertainment district" of Rio Nuevo, we have had discussions with Paul Bear regarding potential joint promotions and other events once the Fox reopens.

I was dismayed by the comments regarding the rumors of the Rialto's demise, and the belief of their origin from Fox Theatre supporters. We at the Fox see the Rialto and the Fox as complementary venues offering different entertainment options to the community. Programming at the Fox will cater to a different audience base than that which currently attends the Rialto, therefore expanding the entertainment opportunities of downtown visitors.

The Fox Tucson Theatre Foundation has been very blessed with the support we have received from the community both in cash contributions and with in-kind donations from Tucson businesses in its two years of operation. We will continue on our mission of restoring the Fox and hope to work with the Rialto in returning vitality to downtown Tucson.

--Herb Stratford
Executive Director, Fox Tucson Theatre Foundation


To the Editor,

Arthur Naiman's letter [December 6] addressing the closing of Arizona International College presents a perfect example of misinformation, in part, and emotions coupled with little knowledge of business economics. He should be given a crying towel.

Putting down Peter Likins' approach to university management is correct. However, the statement "And that's without even considering glitzy, big-ticket projects like the Integrated Learning Center which, while it will provide some educational benefits, can't begin to compete with institutions like AIC on a dollar for dollar basis" is grossly inaccurate. AIC costs are approximately $9 million and I understand they graduated about 24 people. Using these figures, that amounts to $375,000 per student--absurd. Where Naiman came up with a difference of "$350 per student and even that figure is deceptive" is beyond me and is, in itself, deceptive.

To continue his economic confusion by saying "For a university that claims to be student-centered, AIC is clearly a better value" is again naïve and demonstrates his misunderstanding of economics. My understanding is that to get into AIC was very simple, as your SAT score could be so low you would not qualify for any of the other universities in Arizona.

The real place to put the issue is at the feet of the Board of Regents and the state governors. We could easily disband the regents and save millions. Those positions are nothing but political payoffs and the department as a whole is grossly inefficient. I don't think the regents even know what little I have suggested here about the AIC economics or administration.

The concept of an institution of learning in Arizona equivalent to a Stanford or any one of the more prominent private schools in the U.S. is excellent. We should have a privately endowed university operating on the "higher plane" and outside the control of the regents. The continued construction of magnificent edifices for the aggrandizement of certain individuals is the current status quo; losing funds for education to such projects should be the most important issue. Land grant or public schools simply do not get the job done, particularly in Arizona.

Note also the TUSD Board's lack of economic efficiency with the 4 percent raise for superintendent Stan Paz. What was his starting salary, $180,000? And that was overly inflated to begin with. His administrative abilities certainly have not merited the starting salary, much less an increase of any description. He has done nothing but create turmoil. Sounds like a typical Arizona deal.

Where is the truth, the integrity necessary to do these jobs? We need people with a serious desire to help our state educational system. We certainly have not exhibited much so far except in very slim ways in the far past, and I can assure you Naiman is not going to add much.

--Gene Brown