The Skinny Was Unfair to YWCA

To the Editor,

As one of the 12 recipients of this year's YWCA Woman on the Move Award for community service, I am disappointed by your decision to publish the insinuation in The Skinny ("Caged Heat," Dec. 18) that some of the 12 women honored "may" have been worthy, but that "others" were not, and were merely "conning" the apparently gullible women leaders at the YWCA, who had reviewed the 60 nominations and made decisions about what is outstanding community service.

Your nameless contributor is either careless or confused, referring, for example, to the YW as "the Y," and perhaps mistakes the missions of the two institutions. The YMCA works in recreation and fitness, but the mission of the YWCA is developing leadership in women in the areas of community service and ending racism, which were, appropriately, the criteria for the awards.

Having trivialized and tarnished both honorees and institution, perhaps The Weekly would publish the descriptions of our public work, as honored by the YWCA, so that your readers may decide who has met these criteria of community service and who has not. Perhaps The Weekly would publish the name of the man who is so interested in our virtue and who has decided he knows better than the YWCA about which women to honor, so that readers may decide who is conning whom.

--Claudia Ellquist

Under-21 Music Article Came Off as 'Spoiled'

To the Editor,

Cheena Marie Lo's "Teen Zone" (Jan. 8) is on point in only one respect: It seems to have been written by a teenager, not merely about them and the "dearth" of options for teens in Tucson.

I was "interviewed" by Ms. Lo for this article, as is plain from reading it. This interview, however, consisted of an e-mail inquiry from Ms. Lo about Club Congress' under-21 policy, to which I gave a lengthy reply (no joke--it was more than 1,000 words). I made myself available for a follow-up e-mail inquiry, phone call, or in-person interview for the article. I never again heard from Cheena Marie Lo.

So it was with some trepidation that I read the whiny summation that got put in to print, and for good reason. Somehow, Ms. Lo wrote an entire article about how there are no options for teens' late-night entertainment without once mentioning Solar Culture, which hosts nearly 100 shows with no age restriction every year. She also neglected to mention the Rialto and the shows they host.

So what does Ms. Lo's beef boil down to? Her pal "Rusty Sprocket" says there's nothing to do in Tucson. That might be true in Cheena Marie Lo's world, where there is no Solar Culture or Rialto (or the Rock, for that matter, which has under-21 shows sometimes), and the under-21 shows at Club Congress (more than 40 in 2003) are an insulting pittance.

Call me uncharitable, but I'd say that Cheena Marie Lo and co. are spoiled.

--Curtis McCrary, booker, Club Congress

Come See Dead Animals!

To the Editor,

I support Connie Tuttle's right to have an opinion regarding the International Wildlife Museum, as described in "Get Out of Town!" (Dec. 18), but as a member of this museum, I would like to offer a different perspective.

I take family and friends to this venue with the assurance that we will be welcomed into a child-friendly learning environment featuring wildlife displays we could not see elsewhere. The family activities, educational programs and lectures have allowed me access to a wide range of academic speakers that have enriched my life, all at an affordable cost.

Through my volunteer work, I know the International Wildlife Museum provided educational programs to 4,600 students through outreach programs in 2003 and has approximately 20,000 children visit the museum each year. Please consider my opinion of this worthwhile museum and drop in for a visit.

--Susan Elsberry

Thanks for Honoring Mom

To the Editor,

Thank you, from the family of Betty McKasson! Though the whole family was grieving over Mom's sudden death, the words in The Skinny ("So Long, Betty," Jan. 1) brought comfort and even laughter. The Weekly came to be mother's favorite news source, and The Skinny held a special place in her heart. She felt that cutting-edge political criticism was the lifeblood of our community and country. "Somebody has to keep shaking things up," she'd say. Even when she disagreed (and she rarely did), she appreciated that nothing was "too sacred" for The Skinny writers. Thank you for acknowledging her love for "the good fight" and the boundless fun which she had with us all. Thank you for keeping us on our toes.

--Molly McKasson

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