Letters from the issue of Thursday, May 15, 2008

HEAR IT FOR THE BAND

They're Digital Summer!: Digital Summer is an amazing band that has so much talent and deserves this type of recognition and much more ("Sticker Shock," Benjamin Leatherman, May 8).

The band members work really well together and have what it takes to make it. I play their CD in my car all the time, and all my friends ask, "Who are they?" These guys rock!
Becky Patton, Peoria

Jason, you're kidding, right?: I'm in a local band, and I can tell you that Digital Summer is made up of a bunch of pretty-boy phonies. Why is it that New Times always picks the bands that everybody really likes to feature prominently in its pages, instead of bands that nobody seems to like but are artistically great?

It's easy to draw crowds of loyal supporters, but it's hard to labor with few supporters and people telling you to "keep your day job." (I mean, like my music career allows me to work at a day job!) When even your parents don't like your music (and want to kick you out of your room at their house) you know that you must be something right.

New Times is supposed to be an alternative paper, so why does it give a cover story to a band that is supported by countless thousands of people in the Phoenix area? This is intellectually dishonest. Discover something new — a band that nobody likes yet!
Jason Drew, Phoenix

A band that could go national: Anybody who hasn't gone to a Digital Summer show is missing something special!

This is a band that could go national, and it's right here in the Valley.

I've questioned almost every one of New Times' choices of bands for the newspaper's cover in the past, but not this time. New Times, you finally got it right!
Sue Matthews, Phoenix

See, Jason, they're not phonies: Thanks for featuring a band that really knows how to rock, for a change. Digital Summer's shows are drawing several hundred people each now. Can it be long before they become red hot nationally?

What I like about Digital Summer is that they are honest hard rock. They aren't phonies who try to do street hip-hop when they have no idea what that's about. They write songs about what they know, and a lot of it's relationship stuff that we all can relate to.
Richard Poe, Phoenix

Last name says it all: Digital Summer [band members] are a bunch of poseurs. Their music is totally soulless, and their fans are all idiots. Fuck 'em.
James Envy, Tempe

As good as their CD: Digital summer is the shit. Bottom line: The first time I realized that they were the band to represent Arizona's rock scene was when they played the Homeless for the Holidays acoustic set. Any band that can play acoustic and sound just as good as their CD has talent.
Dante M.F. White, Peoria

You keep hurting us, too: Just goes to show that you don't need talent to be on the cover of New Times. Great job, New Times! Another shitty band with a gimmick. You disappoint me more and more.
Name withheld by request

COOLIDGE AND THE GANG

How about an economic exception?: Closing down the Arizona Training Program at Coolidge is such a sad situation ("Home Invasion," Megan Irwin, May 1).

New Times told such a poignant story of how this facility has been home to these 129 people for so long. Who wouldn't be suffering at the loss of one's lifetime home?!

Dire economic times are truly to blame for the situation. It makes no sense, I guess, to keep this place open at taxpayer expense. But it's also sub-human to make these already-burdened folks suffer separation anxiety from Coolidge.

It's true that so many residents over the years should never have been put in a so-called "institution" in the first place, but since the state allowed that to happen, shouldn't an economic exception be made?
Maylene Woodbury, via the Internet

Shine a light: As the parent of a special-needs child, Megan Irwin's article was right on.

The experts who beat their chests about closing down this type of place always forget to mention that, when it happens, a lot of these people [don't] have families to take them in. A large percentage of them make up the homeless population that we have today, and some (worse yet) wind up in the prison system.

By the way, the term mentally retarded is offensive to special-needs people. Many of these people have physical problems, but their brains are as sharp as yours or mine.

God bless you for shedding light on the plight of these people.
Name withheld by request

BLACK AND WHITE

Last name says it all: I see that New Times' editors had Sarah Fenske write another article on the Wilkerson case ("Free Bryant Wilkerson," May 1) to kiss some black ass after [New Times executive] Michael Lacey offended black people with his remark ("Lacey Responds," April 17).

You can't possibly kiss enough black ass that black people won't turn on you in a heartbeat. Just ask Bill Clinton.

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Nikki
Nikki

"Pretty boy posers"??!!! Look, I'll give it to you, Digital Summer is a good looking band, but if you've ever met them or knew anything about them you would know there's nothing "poser" about em! They're insanely talented and the hardest (almost too much so) working band I've ever even heard of! My advice to the other PHX bands out there....Pay attention to these guys...ya might just learn something.

Dove Shientag-Betts
Dove Shientag-Betts

Each year, thousands of animals die in Procter & Gamble laboratories -- the victims of painful, archaic and entirely unnecessary product tests. Caustic chemicals are forced into the eyes of rabbits and applied to animals' shaved and raw skin.

Laboratory workers place the animals in restraining devices so they cannot struggle while the workers apply the chemicals, which burn into the animals' eyes and skin. P&G "scientists" do not sedate the animals or give them pain killers.

Animals sometimes break their necks or backs attempting to escape the pain. Those that survive are used in yet additional painful tests ... until they are finally killed. The victims include rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters, ferrets and other animals.

P&G refuses to stop testing its products on animals, despite the fact that these tests are not required by any law, and despite the fact that more reliable and humane alternatives do exist.

Procter & Gamble spends millions of dollars to package itself as a responsible, caring company, and claims to be a leader in the development of alternatives to the use of animals in product testing.

But P&G refuses to put its money where its mouth is. In 2004 alone, P&G spent $3 billion on advertising. This stands in stark contrast to the $64 million that P&G claims to have spent on developing alternatives over a 14-year period!

Despite its repeated P.R. claims about being in the forefront of developing alternatives and reducing product testing on animals, P&G's priorities seem clear: in less than 5 days, P&G spends more on advertising than it claims to have spent in 14 years on alternatives to painful and lethal animal tests.

The fact is, P&G says one thing and does another. If they truly shared our goal of eliminating animal cruelty, P&G would not have lobbied to defeat a bill before the California legislature that would have banned the infamous Draize eye-irritancy test.

In reality, P&G relies on these archaic tests strictly for its own protection from liability lawsuits. The truth is that P&G could stop animal testing today without hindering anyone's safety. Until it stops its animal cruelty, the letters P&G will stand for nothing but Pain & Greed!

Dove Betts

 
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