CORRECTION: Our cover story last week ["The Kids Aren't Alright," May 5-11] incorrectly attributed a quote to City Attorney Bob White that was actually made by Joe Anderson of the Launchpad and Sunshine Theater. The quote reads: "If the mayor's concern was really kids being in the presence of alcohol, he'd be trying to enforce his proposal across the board. Both Isotopes Park and Journal Pavilion have more violations than [the Launchpad and Sunshine Theater], so why are we being targeted? I think this is all motivated by something else entirely. I wish I knew what it was." This mistake was made during the editorial process and was no fault of the author. The Alibi deeply regrets the error.
Music for the Masses
I enjoyed your article, “Ballroom Blitz,” in the April 21 issue of the Alibi. Indeed, musicians will continue to make music, and creativity will never become completely monopolized, but the dinosaurs of the music labels are not just going to roll over and give up. The lawsuit that the industry filed last week against the college students at MIT and elsewhere is a vicious corporate attack to control the Internet commons. Their real goal is not to punish a few hundred college students, but rather to gain licensing control over the very software that permits easy music downloading. They will coerce and co-opt to garner proprietary rights re the Napster/Snocap debacle.
A Novel Idea
[RE: "A Quiet Revolution," April 28-May 4] Once again, Jerry Ortiz y Pino does not grasp the problem and promotes the liberal Democrat agenda of "I have a problem, send more money," instead of meeting and resolving the problem in short fashion.
I submit that if the charter schools are as successful as Ortiz y Pino alludes to, then the overpaid people in APS should be studying why they are so successful, and instead of being intentionally ignorant and arrogant, learn from the charter schools and adopt their methods. Whatever they are doing cannot be illegal, otherwise they would not be allowed to do it. And if it wasn't working, they would not have 20 percent of our high school students [in the charter school system] as you mention. Working smarter instead of turning a blind eye and sending a blank check would benefit the kids and the taxpayers, the very people whose children have everything to gain and everything to lose.
We do not need two versions of APS, which is already graduating too many throwaway kids because the public education system is broken. We do not need two Capitol Outlay funds so we can all pay twice in order to keep someone employed. In fact, we taxpayers should not be paying any public monies to any Charter school. Why is it so hard for these entities to work towards a common goal for the benefit of everyone? Then there would be no hyperventilating or hemorrhaging, less wasted money and smarter students who might just stick around and create some new businesses here. Investing in New Mexico—gasp!—what a novel idea.
What a Shame
Aging water mains, congested streets without landscaping and stagnating small-businesses is unfortunately the standard in much of Albuquerque's near northeast heights. There is a tremendous disincentive for young families to invest in these ailing neighborhoods and grow their families because of the perception that the area is in general decline. Long-term residents, like myself, feel abandoned by the city.
City Councilor Sally Mayer, who represents most of this area of the city, recently organized two community meetings to discuss what can be done to improve the area. After almost four years of negligence, why is Councilor Mayer just now deciding to hear our concerns?
My husband and I are 38-year residents of Albuquerque, buying our first home in 1967 in the Fair Heights neighborhood. We vividly recall when many of today's busiest boulevards were just dirt roads and when there was nothing but open prairie east of Wyoming to the foothills. The houses and neighborhoods that were designed 40 and 50 years ago have stood the test of time and carry the memories and investments of generations of Albuquerque residents.
What a shame that City Hall is not doing more to reinvigorate this part of the city. We needed to be holding community planning meetings four years ago, at the outset of this councilor's term, to get the attention and resources from the city that we deserve now.
Freedom Peddling Journalists
[RE: Letters, "Smut Peddling ’Heathens,'" May 5-11] I think that the majority of us seasoned Weekly Alibi readers and of its predecessor NuCity, are comfortable knowing these as alternative press, and therefore, not for everyone. Also I hope most of us realize that in order to enjoy the other fine parts of your publication, the food section, movies, arts, music and news sections, the Alibi must generate income. Those fine writers and editorialists need to be paid and money must be made to pay the electric bill, rent and float the koffee-klatch fund.
I hope we know that advertisers are the lifeblood of newspapers, and the Alibi is no exception. Therefore I believe that most readers realize that advertising income pays the bills and allows the Alibi to exist. And that although we may or may not subscribe to the services of any particular advertiser, we realize their function and are willing to accept them on that basis.
Furthermore, on a personal note, as a military veteran, I am comfortable that a part of my effort as a service member was to protect the rights of the Alibi and its counterparts to exist. If speech is to be truly free, we must allow for some speech, with which we may not agree. I believe we must allow for the existence of others who may not agree with our expectations of morality, and not foist our expectations upon them. But rather, give them the right to choose their own version of morality and not provide them with unsolicited criticism.
Letters should be sent with the writer's name, address and daytime phone number via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. They can also be faxed to (505) 256-9651. Letters may be edited for length and clarity, and may be published in any medium; we regret that owing to the volume of correspondence we cannot reply to every letter.