Porn is a Drug

To the Editor,

Connie Tuttle's article on the sex industry ("Sex Sells," November 14) was right on the money. It is refreshing to read criticism of pornography from someone other than the likes of Andrea Dworkin or Pat Robertson. Rather than portraying porn as a brainwashing tool of the patriarchy or an open portal to hell, Tuttle briefly explores how porn affects intimacy and how we view our bodies.

Porn is not evil nor is it liberating, it's a drug. It's addictive, it gets you high, it helps you temporarily escape your problems and a lot of people are making a ton of money from it. By the way, has anyone noticed a correlation between the legitimizing of porn and the growing scorn of cigarettes? Society always needs at least one legitimate drug to placate the masses.

--Manuel Peters

Wasted Space

To the Editor,

Danehy's column ("Writing Wrongs," November 21) is just too much to handle. His comments about forms of music he doesn't appreciate are, in my opinion, over the line. He writes: "Do I have to appreciate or even accept that stuff, too?" about offensive skinhead music. No, Tom, you don't have to like it, just as I loathe it and most hip-hop as well, but you damn sure have to accept its existence. There's this little thing called the First Amendment.

On the subject of marijuana, he can't be bothered to actually read any studies himself, merely a Time article that cites one--oh, wait, research would be work. Actual journalism from Danehy on anything but his beloved sports? Can't have that, only knee-jerk Michael Moore-esque idiocy.

Yes, while under the influence of pot, certain cognitive abilities are diminished, while other, creative capabilities are enhanced, along with various medically useful effects. The Time article in question he refers to also says:

"Interpretations [of marijuana research] may tell more about [one's] own biases than the data," writes Mitch Earleywine in Understanding Marijuana: A New Look at the Scientific Evidence, published in August by Oxford.

Note that most smokers in the study only had impairment in time-awareness and short-term memory, and that it wasn't comparing the same persons before and after they became pot smokers, and is hence fundamentally flawed. Tom should look at longtime drinkers and tell me they aren't impaired too; actual brain damage occurs with chronic alcoholism, but not with pot smoking.

Cognitive impairment occurs with use of all psychoactive drugs, even the ones the doctor gives you. (Valium, anyone? Or how about a Soma for your back?)

Perhaps if we had our police officers focusing more on violent and property crimes and not chasing down drug users, the other negative effects of bad music on its listeners would be lessened, too.

Danehy is skewed, reactionary, biased and a waste of space.

--David Mercer

Intestinal Bug

To the Editor,

Somehow I muster the intestinal fortitude to pick up another issue of your weekly rag. Once in a while I might agree with Tom Danehy or get a chuckle from the movie reviews. But your recent choice of advertisers is a source of outrage.

You have allowed extreme, irresponsible statements to appear in your display ads and back-page classifieds. One of these gems of wisdom is by someone who ironically calls himself "Dr. Knowledge." He suggests Donald Rumsfeld and our elected leaders are somehow responsible for the Washington, D.C., sniper shootings! What kind of left-wing pro-terrorist propaganda is this?

Maybe the same kind from your edition containing a revolting display ad by some organization calling itself the "Zero Tolerance Task Force." Here they have some elitist warning for only those "in the know." Only for those who believe that 9/11 was as preventable as California's blackouts! What kind of crap is that? Even if the blackouts were preventable, which I doubt, what does that have to do with 9/11? Excuses for terrorists?

It's difficult enough sifting through the porn and sex ads while trying to ignore them. But your paper has a responsibility to the community that supports you. Fight the greed and show your strength for America!

--Phil Wade

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