If Only Bob Grimm Were an Older Woman ...

I saw Ladies in Lavender, and I must take issue with some of Mr. Grimm's critique ("A Spot of Tea," May 26). I agree that Judi Dench is superb--isn't she always?--and Maggie Smith does a fine job as well. But to say the film is about nothing more than "two older women having tea and listening to the radio" misses one of the major strengths of the story: the disappointments these two women have had and the different ways they have of coping with their circumstances. This seems to be a "woman's film," like The Hours, and perhaps would be better served by a woman reviewer, even an older woman who is able to appreciate the nuances of character offered.

As for "dull visuals," has Mr. Grimm ever been to Cornwall? What I have seen on TV and for myself on the west coast of Scotland suggests that the landscape there is pretty stark and rugged--perhaps not full of color, but certainly not dull.

I am admittedly no film buff, but I think this one deserves better than "dull" and "not very exciting."

Paula Olch

ALCV Wants to Set the Record Straight

One of your readers questioned our dedication to promoting clean, renewable energy and efficiency measures to conserve resources ("Environment Prospects Looking Dim," Mailbag, May 26). We'd like to set the record straight: The Arizona League of Conservation Voters is 100 percent committed to working for clean air, clean water and protection of our natural heritage.

We support and endorse Arizona Corporation Commission candidates who care about the environment and are willing to support the promotion of clean, renewable energy policies once they are in office. The league also supports a stronger Environmental Portfolio Standard (EPS), which is the percentage of electricity required to be generated from renewable resources, including solar. The current commissioners are, in fact, revisiting Arizona's EPS with an eye for increasing the existing EPS requirement of 1.1 percent up to 15 percent by 2025. We view this as a very positive development. We were also pleased to support an energy-efficient-appliance measure at the Legislature this year, which was signed into law. Promoting a positive energy future for the state that focuses on clean, renewable resources and energy conservation is a commitment we take seriously, and we put that commitment into action every day through our efforts.

Susan Culp
Deputy director, Arizona League of Conservation Voters

Good News: Danehy's Finally Maturing!

Tom Danehy is finally showing maturation as a writer and philosopher. The rant on marital rights (June 2) shows a real individualistic, if not libertarian, streak. Thanks for not just going with the herd. Even more thanks for not just reacting to the herd--well, except for his often-expressed fixation against that tiny group of home schoolers who want to compete in intramurals.

Tom, stick to the big ideas; you're great at it. Leave the easy and misguided for less-capable thinkers to attack. Better yet, help those individuals to band together and form their own league. Tom, you'd be a great coach and mentor ...

John Richards

Bad News: Danehy Is Marginally Coherent

Tom Danehy's marginally coherent column opposing benefits for unmarried couples appears to be nothing more than deep-rooted, festering resentment against couples for not getting married. He claims marriage represents a true commitment versus just living together, which is laughable given how easy and common it is to get a divorce.

He presents absolutely no valid argument as to why unmarried couples shouldn't be entitled to the same benefits. Are they less-productive than married couples? No evidence is presented. In fact, the opposite is a distinct possibility, since they are less likely to be distracted from work by parental obligations. Do they pay fewer taxes?

Unmarried couples are entitled to the same benefits as married couples. To offer them anything less is discrimination based solely on what amounts to a simple technicality: that they didn't fill out a marriage license application and pay $50.

Doug Koppinger

Immigration Policy Shaped by Capitalism

I just finished reading Leo Banks' article, "Catastrophe in Care" (June 2). I was very happy with the research, time and effort he put into this story. I am one in a few in this country who does not really take sides, left or right. I want balance, especially in the news I read.

So what is the solution? The right wants to build sniper towers and barbed wire fences on the borders, and the left wants to set up free hotels in the pathway of the immigrants. The corporations definitely should be held accountable by our government. It is kind of weird how everyone is complaining that all of our jobs are going to Mexico and China, then thousands of immigrants from Mexico and China come to work here. Are Americans really all fat and lazy? Maybe if these companies did not thrive on this cheap labor, "this problem" could be helped. Why is the Mexican government never to blame? All the articles I read say nothing about their part in this.

It looks to me that companies and governments stand to gain way too much from the cheap labor. That's why nobody really gives a damn. The crappy part of the deal is I have insurance, and I still end up paying a large percentage of my health care costs. Capitalism at its finest.

Adam Yeater

Another Perspective on Outgoing Poetry Fest Head

Regarding James Reel's commentary about Jami Macarty ("Off to Canada, June 2). I would like to present an alternative viewpoint. Having known Jami for many years as a Tucson Poetry Festival volunteer, as her yoga student and as a friend, I feel she deserves a more worthy send-off.

To illuminate the "controversial" aspect of her tenure, Reel expressed others' viewpoints that Jami had used the TPF to promote her own career, burned out her volunteers by her "steely single-mindedness" and "irked" them by drawing a salary for five years as executive director. As a volunteer for TPS, I never felt overburdened, but rather invigorated by her example. She took it upon herself to withstand the grant-writing process, and earned important funding for the TPF from a Rockefeller philanthropist. Because of this, the Tucson community had five more years of her hard work directing, planning, coordinating and booking all the poetic talent.

Controversial people are often controversial because they change the status quo in some way. The TPF now has semiannual components, greater financial stability, and with the umbrella organization "OLE" off the ground, a brighter outlook. Jami added many positive aspects to the culture and well-being of Tucson. Was she "controversial?" Perhaps. Is she "classy?" Definitely--and so many will miss her.

Maureen Bike

Thanks for San Xavier Coverage

Thank you, for the article about San Xavier ("Sublime Mission," Tales From the Outskirts, June 9). I especially appreciate the emphasis on the people involved, and on how much it means to Tucson. You have brought the story to life for your readers. As a member of the board of the Patronato San Xavier, I'm especially grateful.

Natalie Davis

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