UP IN SMOKE
Time to legalize: With regard to Ray Stern's story about expensive bongs ("The Bong Show," August 16), it was recently reported by the U.N. Office of Drugs and Crime that 12.6 percent of all Americans between the ages of 15 and 64 admitted to using pot at least once in 2005. Since a large percentage of pot users would not admit to a complete stranger that they use pot, the percentage of pot users is probably much higher.
In the Netherlands, where marijuana is quasi-legal for adults, only 6.1 percent of all Dutch people between the same ages used marijuana at least once in the year 2005.
Most drug war cheerleaders proclaim that if marijuana were re-legalized, pot use would skyrocket. I believe that the Netherlands example shows that this probably would not happen.
But suppose pot use did increase. Suppose pot use by adults doubled. Would this necessarily be bad? I submit that it would not. As pot use increases, alcohol use declines.
Most frequent marijuana users don't drink alcohol, but those who do drink alcohol drink substantially less than non-marijuana users.
I believe that most doctors would agree that heavy marijuana use is a lot less harmful than heavy alcohol use. Heavy alcohol use can and does kill. No amount of marijuana use has ever killed anyone.
Kirk Muse, Mesa
It was nice knowing you: Your appalling portrait of pro-Republican Fox News lover Pat Curley is disgusting ("The Yoda of 9/11," Stephen Lemons, August 9). Comparing him to Yoda from Star Wars? When all of your personal rights have been diminished in fear of the "so-called" terrorists maybe you will understand. Ask yourself, how many terrorists have you met? But yet we all should live in fear? I hope you continue to move toward truth, and for now, I choose to move away from your publication. Tell Ted Turner I said hello.
Kevin Jones, Phoenix
Missing the point: Stephen Lemons' latest offering has to be one of the worst, and most pointless, articles I've ever seen in New Times. Anyone who's read The Bird or Lemons' blog, Feathered Bastard, knows full well that Lemons considers anyone who questions the official version of what transpired on 9/11 is either an idiot, a liar, or both, and that "the 9/11 conspiracy theories are all bullshit" (a direct quote from his blog).
We all know that some of the "troofers" are serious wackjobs, but an entire article devoted to a comic book geek who lives in total squalor and sees himself as a Jedi Master? Pleeeez!
The sad thing is, you already have an excellent and seriously underused asset in Sarah Fenske someone who can write a complete, well-researched article without resorting to name-calling, ridicule, or taking sides. What a breath of fresh air! You may disagree with her conclusions, but I defy anyone to say she's not a good journalist.
John Rycraft, Phoenix
SMELLS LIKE SUCCESS
Points for the pig: Ha ha! The Kay's Place article ("Oh, Kay," C.M. Redding, August 2) both made my stomach turn and made me laugh out loud at work. Thank you for your bravery in facing odors of unknown origin to break me out of my manic Monday!
Heather Lesser, Phoenix
Well see you there: Call it . . . dark humor, entertainment for lowlifes, but just give me more of it!
I haven't read anything that funny in ages, decades really. I just wanna go to Kay's Place and take in the stench and bad bartending. Thanks a million for the laughs!
Robert Allen, Fountain Hills
A free drink? Were there: We are having difficulty believing that you and your GQ, Nordstrom-toting, Nip/Tuck, Silicone-ville, cronies were ever really at Jake's-O-Mine ("Caged Heat," C.M. Redding, August 16). Your knowledge of the establishment is totally erroneous!
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In the first place, our smokers patio is called Jake's-O-Mine smokers patio, not the "party cage," as you suggested. Perhaps a more appropriate term would have been Butt Suckers Paradise. But what difference does it make. You supposedly quit . . . right?
The fence surrounding our smoking patio is pool fence, not chain-link. Obviously, you must be confusing the type of fence, because of your last place of residence . . . Florence, perhaps?
Oh, by the way, Pig Shit, (or is it Mr. Pig Shit?) we at Jake's do not run "tabs." We have found that "booze pigs" have the nasty habit of drinking and dashing. You know, not paying the tab before you leave. By our calculations, if you spent $110 of your boss' money on Jack and ginger, that would mean you each had eight drinks, give or take. We suggest you and your buddies renew your membership in AA!
As to no condom machine in our restrooms, we feel sure your current partner probably has one or two stashed in his Gucci wallet!? The only thing that might make us believe you had actually set foot in our establishment would be a return performance. One of us would personally mix you a Jack and ginger on the house!
Kent and Margo Young
Jake's-O-Mine Saloon, Apache Junction