I have just finished reading Steven Mikulan's terrific article about Royce and Marilyn ["Forever Fabulous," June 410]. What a fascinating, fully textured and tantalizing story! I want to know more about these women whose lives are not so far from the life any of us who come to L.A. may find ourselves living when we are in our 60s. Thank you for the article, and for the time your writer spent getting to know these women.
--Susan T. Lindau
Thank you, thank you for the article on Royce Reed and Marilyn Hoggatt! We first saw Ms. Reed on Wilshire and Normandie in the early '80s; she was elegantly walking down "the big boulevard" swathed in dark furs and, if memory serves us, a soft gray suit with a magnificent hat and perfectly coordinated accessories. We were to see her a number of other times, but now understand why we have missed her for these many years. Now to glimpse a small sliver of her life and to see her supreme elegance looking out from your cover and the accompanying article . . . their grace and superior bearing put to shame the appalling characters that we have crawling the streets of today.
--Mark and Nancy Lehman
What a great article -- a fine, revealing look into what ultimately becomes of those sickening women who spend their lives panning for gold and only mining pyrite. They thought they were maidens, but were just maids, and now are old maids -- living tribute to what happens to those who spend every resource trying to impress everyone else, whilst only fooling themselves. At least if they'd been junkies they'd have something to blame and a reason for the chasm between their reality and everyone else's. As it is, I'm sure that being immortalized by the L.A. Weekly will keep their delusion burning brightly for their remaining years.
L.A. was certainly once a kinder, more glamorous place, but the presence of those two had precious little to do with it. There are certainly a lot of kind, well-mannered, polite, wonderful people around from that bygone era, but Marilyn and Royce aren't two of them -- it's just another of their self-perpetuated illusions.
I want to thank you for the well-written article by David Cogan ["The Hidden Epidemic," May 28June 3] and for bringing the issue of rape to the public's attention. Rape is a crime of violence motivated by a need to show power over or to express anger against another person. Sex is used as a weapon. Because of the shame and humiliation of the crime, the perpetrator may never stand trial.
Today, violence against women has reached epidemic proportions. The first step in dealing with any epidemic is persuading policymakers that it exists. The city of Los Angeles can be a model for other cities across the nation by addressing rape as an epidemic, by beginning discussions on how to prevent this crime and by providing the resources necessary for those who have survived rape. To do anything less makes us as guilty as the rapist.
City of Los Angeles
Commission on the Status of Women
I found Lou Rutigliano's article about the Marina real estate scandal ["Ring's Marina Go-Round," June 410] to be very informative. Those people down at City Hall need to think twice before trying to put this over on us. Renting in Los Angeles is difficult enough as it is without having to deal with these millionaire slumlords. Hopefully, someone down at the city courts will read this article and put this lowlife away instead of supporting his ridiculous schemes. I've been hearing about this dream remake of the Marina for years, but at this point I think it is going to be as successful as the Fantasy Island remake. Keep up the good work.
I loved the story by Peter Hartz about the traffic-control system ["The Pedestrian Always Rings Twice," June 410]. Just the facts, without a lot of political meditation, on something that affects all our lives here every day. Good work. And I'll never push that street-crossing button more than once again.
Los Angeles â
Re: Marc Haefele's "The Charter End Game" [June 1117]. Thank you for the perspective; I couldn't agree with him more. As a May graduate now navigating the corridors of power, I was tempted to exclaim during the news conference and council meeting, "It's globalism, stupid!" I realize that in the "real world" such terms are considered academic, but I am glad they are not too journalistic. My question: How much of the new city charter is modeled on or consistent with the autonomous concentration of power -- under the guise of accountability or efficiency -- that forms the basis of global economic policy? Under globalism, executives in Beaverton, Oregon, make policies that affect workers in Indonesia. Will this charter do the same for L.A. politics? Is it really political reform, or merely an application of the ideas of the ruling class? Does codifying "accountability" really translate to a transfer of power from the vested interests to the people? Reform is indeed needed, but politicians will always find a way to make the system work in favor of their donors.
I would like to commend Sasha Anawalt for her insightful commentary on "Healing Art" [June 1117]. How exciting to hear about a critic transformed in her way of viewing art and art making. Art truly is a mirror of society and can have the power to transform it. She rightly recognized so many different artists and the wide variety of ways they transform their audiences -- especially those doing hard work in schools and communities.
END OF STORY? NOT BLOODY LIKELY
Re: Greg Burk's review of Star Wars: Episode 1 ["The Pablum Menace," May 2127]. When the fearsome hour of editing arrives, the guys and gals in your editing department discover they've got 408 disconnected, smarmy quips and precisely 12 coherent phrases reflecting actual opinion. Regrettably, none of the quips get edited out; they mask the fact that the reviewer was too cowardly to commit to the geekiness of a rave or the cynicism of a pan. Voilà! A movie review.
Is there any critic out there who can just take The Phantom Menace for what it is instead of overanalyzing and overintellectualizing it? I mean, it's a great movie. End of story!
--George O. West III
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