Feedback from the Issue of Thursday, August 20, 2009
We do what we can: I've been following editorials in New Times for years, and I want to thank you for all your efforts to give us the real stories in our community.
My heroes have been John Dougherty, Ray Stern, and now, Sarah Fenske. I don't know where you found Sarah, but you really got a good one there. She is awesome! Her last article was one of the best — this is Pulitzer Prize stuff, in my opinion!
Keep up the good work, and keep Sarah happy — we really appreciate her.
James W. McHugh, Chandler
BROTHERS UP IN ARMS
Yeah, like they'd have ever let any of us pledge a fraternity: I am appalled. You are kidding, calling these glorified row houses architecturally significant! You are, aren't you? I do not care whose name is on a piece of crap; it is still a piece of crap, Robrt. Actually, a house that looked like feces would be far more interesting than these buildings that "stand as a unique example of [the architect's] own style and imagination." In this case, I think it is more that the architects didn't really care at all.
If you really want to leave these monuments to rape and debauchery in place, I cannot support you in that. This recent spate of "mid-century" architectural nostalgia is completely misplaced. I have lived in a number of houses here in Tempe built during that era. Each needs to be knocked down for some reason. Nonetheless, these houses are not architectural masterpieces that need preservation. The time that they hark back to was a time when temporary structures became vogue. Let them be temporary.
[ASU President Michael] Crow has the audacity to want to tear these buildings down and put up greener, more sustainable buildings? That ogre! I am no fan of gentrification. However, what Crow has done on the ASU campus is excellent. As a Tempe resident it is nice to not ride my bike through beaten-down slums that ring ASU's campus. It is nice to ride through the new complexes. Your nostalgia is misplaced.
I wonder, Robrt, if this is simply the cry of a fraternity member who has let his personal predilections get in the way of his journalistic integrity. Perhaps this is another piece of "ironic" journalism.
William T. Terrance, Tempe
Save our whorehouses, too: When you call these frat houses "historical" buildings you cheapen the word. The restrooms at South Mountain Park have more historical significance than these buildings that look like motels on Van Buren. Even Taliesin has not come to the defense of this excrement that it designed. Thank God Wright died years before his student built this junk. Frank Lloyd Wright would never have built shit like this.
These frat houses housed their copulation, masturbation, and degeneracy. When I was a student at the University of Arizona, I found frat boys shallow, elitist, spoiled, loud-mouthed, boastful drunkards, and an embarrassment to their families.
The Bird Cage whorehouse in Tombstone has more historical significance than this nondescript architectural junk. This is a rotting embarrassment. They should be plowed under.
Fred Linsenmeyer, Phoenix
Goodbye, art. Hello, crap: My father was a structural engineer — with his own firm (Hamlyn, Mann & Anderson) in Phoenix — who, I remember, worked for Kemper Goodwin, John Tang, and, to a lesser extent, Frank Lloyd Wright from time to time. They were all talented architects, but Wright lived on his reputation from earlier work.
In any event, what you are describing is not unique to ASU. It is a nationwide problem and has been occurring for years. Namely, once something is labeled as "old" then it becomes unfit and in need of replacement. Nobody seems to value real architecture when compared to glass and steel edifices that are environmentally friendly. Thus, we destroy art and replace it with crap. What else can I say?
Tom Hamlyn, Kanab, Utah
Dude, write us back when you're sober: Let's set the record straight here, everybody, from somebody who was there when this all started.
[Then-ASU President] Lattie Coor set out to destroy the Greek system at ASU in 1990. He did. The ASU frats were a top-10 Greek system in the nation back then and hosted the number-one-rated fraternity party in the U.S. Some of you may have heard of Paddy Murphy?
Second, this was a thriving community and a great place to have the time of your life while going to college. I did.
Third, thank you for bringing this to our attention, New Times! There is no reason to let the Phi Delt house get bulldozed.
But in the end, ASU has been after that property since 1990. They destroyed what was a great place to go to school and have fun before you had to grow up. Nice legacy to be know for, ASU and Lattie Coor.
Chris Lang, Mesa
Frats raising crops. What could go wrong?: It is too bad they would not save a couple of the old fraternity buildings and build a green sustainable area around them with a Victory Garden to teach sustainability gardening besides just retail along the light rail. Also, retrofit them in a green manner.
The light rail can increase the economy along the line however many land owners are holding out to maximize their profits. Typical capitalism; they did nothing to improve the area and want all the benefits.
William Zaffer, Scottsdale
The dream world of journalists: It must be nice to nest in a dream world. As journalists, your ideas don't translate to real life very well.
Wouldn't it be nice to be able to settle all fights with a few harsh words, at the most? If it did escalate, you could resort to a good old-fashioned fistfight. What will make it fair? Will you fight only guys you know you can beat? If you're getting your ass kicked, will you be able to say "uncle" and it will stop right there, and after shaking hands, you can laugh about it over a beer (maybe at the White House)?
An armchair journalist can input his idea of how a situation should've been handled, almost like he was there. Maybe all cops should try to shoot weapons out of suspects' hands. Maybe Harold Fish should've put his weapon away after he dispersed the dogs and had a fair fight with a man who charged him even after he knew Fish had a handgun.
I am sure Mr. Kuenzil would've fought fairly. Is it fair for a 43-year-old man to fight a 69-year-old man? You know nothing about Mr. Fish, yet you insinuate he is a coward just itching to use his handgun. Would you have felt better if Mr. Fish knew his assailant was unstable?
In your world, you don't have to be concerned about protecting your family after you get knocked out by the assailant with whom you decided to have your fair fistfight. Criminals and unstable people like Mr. Kuenzil would love your world and the safe environment you would provide for them.
Ron Bigness, Mesa
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