Letters

Letters from the issue of Thursday, August 18, 2005

If you want a good sandwich or salad, try Crazy Jim's on 15th Avenue and Indian School Road. Great chicken feta salad, and the pita bread rocks!
Doreen Petrillo, Phoenix

Paying through the nose: About My Florist Cafe, when you're paying more than $10 for a sandwich, you don't want it on that crappy bread.

I just wanted to mention that, about a year ago, I wrote to Stephen Lemons because I thought an article was kind of, well, offensive. Well, I've been reading his stuff since, and I really like it. He has style. He's entertaining.
Heather Lesser, Tempe

Run From the Border

Raising some questions: I guess New Times wants to become another Southwestern media apologist for illegal immigration! However, Robrt L. Pela's Speakeasy concerning the "Wilson Four" didn't help much, as it was littered with obscenities and curiously phrased baited commentary ("Pardon Me," August 4).

Pathetically, the analysis was far below Pela's usually compelling and coherent writing quality. However, the article did raise some unasked questions.

If Luis Nava "wasn't sure about [his] legal status," why did he travel across the border? I can't believe someone possessing international business skills could be ignorant of such a basic reality.

You have to wonder if the "Wilson Four" incident was a premeditated test of this country's immigration policy, and even a way of motivating changes in border law.
Scott Hume, Phoenix

An important issue: I just want to congratulate Robrt L. Pela for exposing issues such as the "Wilson Four" controversy in such an important publication. I am a reporter myself for a Spanish-language newspaper, but it makes me really happy to see that there is a journalist out there in the English-language press in Phoenix taking these issues into people's lives.
Luis Avila, Tempe

Treading Water

A river runs through it: I was exceptionally appalled at articles written on the San Pedro River in the Arizona Republic and by John Dougherty of New Times ("Doomed River," August 4). These articles were written about the fact that the San Pedro ran dry for several days in July. They were poorly researched and factually incorrect, but will stand as truth in the eyes of some readers.

About the only source mentioned was Robin Silver's Center for Biological Diversity. Silver's agenda is biased, and his information and press releases slanted toward his sole agenda, which is to close Fort Huachuca. With the help of improperly documented and researched articles like the ones in New Times and the Arizona Republic, he will eventually succeed in getting Fort Huachuca closed as a military post.

If anyone considers this a good thing, then consider that three counties (Cochise, Santa Cruz and Pima) will be severely affected economically. The loss of federal dollars to the state will be in the billions. In addition, it is not at all clear who will eventually own the grounds. Closing the base as a DOD facility does not mean that the infrastructure will not be used by any number of other agencies, state or federal. If the post is closed and the facilities are used anyway, how would anyone rationally consider that this outcome will reduce the use of groundwater?

Here are some facts that were not discussed in the articles:

• The area of the San Pedro in Cochise County has experienced a drought since 1993. Several other streams and tributaries such as Soldier Creek, which runs through the Greater Huachuca Golf Course, are completely dried up. The head of that creek is the Garden Canyon Area of Fort Huachuca, and there is no groundwater drawn from its watershed.

• The San Pedro originates in Mexico, out of which it flows north. I doubt that there is much control, voluntary or not, when it comes to the use of San Pedro River water before it comes into the United States.

• Not one mention is made in the articles about the enormous and costly efforts that Fort Huachuca has made to reduce groundwater usage on the post. The entire World War II area of Jeffords Street and the old hospital areas have been completely razed because the 1940s cast-iron water pipes were leaking and hard to repair. Every effort has been made to replace every water fixture with a low-usage equivalent.

If the conclusion of the articles is that the state should start an initiative to save the San Pedro, Fort Huachuca stands as ready as ever to be a member of that effort. Ask Silver if he would like to partner up with the fort on that initiative and see how much he really cares about the San Pedro.
Jay P. Gordon, Chandler/Sierra Vista

Hot under the collar: John Dougherty's column was great! Not only the part about the doomed river, the San Pedro, but the part about the homeless dying on the streets of Phoenix.

It makes me really angry that nothing more was done by the city for these homeless people during the heat of this summer! I'm going to pass this around my office for everyone to read.
Bobbie Brian, Glendale

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