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I just read Deborah Vankin’s cover story on Kill Radio [“Is Anybody Listening?,” May 11–17], which I think, on the whole, is excellent. However, I am puzzled by the author’s need to emphasize alcohol as a significant aspect of this project and its culture. While the jouissance, so to speak, of Kill Radio may be revolutionary and linked to the indie scene, does that equate it with partying? Give me a break. I would hope as an indie media venue, you would want to portray your comrades in alternative media fairly and accurately. Thanks for the coverage, but please be aware of the line between edgy humor and misinformation.
Who woulda thought it? The Kill Radio Collective made the cover of the L.A. Weekly. The article will do more to let people know we exist than 100 fund-raisers. We’ve received so many e-mails from people interested in finding out more about us, we can barely keep up with them all.
However, the collective is concerned about the emphasis on alcohol, and lack of emphasis on other areas. (The article made it seem like we keep a minibar at the station.) We are also concerned with the juxtaposition of a pull quote concerning beer money, a photo of Youth Organizing Communities (YOC) volunteers and a photo of a bottle of beer. YOC volunteers work hard to organize themselves and their communities, and this juxtaposition is not just misleading, but potentially damaging.
Yes, the Kill Radio Collective does mix politics and fun, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t committed to our process, and to our political and social goals. Many of us have worked, and continue to work, very hard to develop a truly grassroots, alternative information outlet, an opportunity for people, locally and globally, to talk to each other in an unmediated, uncensored forum. These and other less “sexy” aspects of the Kill Radio project were given little attention in the article.
The collective felt these points needed to be addressed. Still, Kill Radio does want to thank the Weekly for its interest in our project. We especially thank Deborah Vankin for all her hard work and efforts to write a fair and balanced article.
—The Kill Radio Collective
Reading your cover story on Kill Radio, I was reminded of a Frank Zappa quote, “The torture never stops.” Just how much longer do we have to be flogged by pieces celebrating self-proclaimed “rebels” and “renegade DJs,” “intellectual freedom-fighters” whose bold swipes at the Man include “painting the first hip-hop graffiti mural” and playing a Blink-182 track 30 times? This is such colossal jive, lock-step “alt” rituals conducted for . . . whom? Ten-year-olds who just got off the bus and need their bad-boy tickets punched? Of course the Buddyhead jocks “don’t follow rules.” When you’ve locked yourself into such a perceptual prison, the rules are unspoken, mutely acknowledged and observed without deviation.
THE MANY FACES OF
Re: “Is This Any Place for a School? Yes” by Howard Blume and David Perera [May 4–10]. I’m usually on your side of the issues, but on the Belmont issue I cannot help but laugh now, with derision and cynicism, at this newspaper that has for years decried all the chicanery and environmental questions swirling like a poison cloud around the Belmont Boondoggle. What gives with the sudden about-face? Could it be that now that the Daily News, the L.A. Times and the LAUSD have jumped on the anti-Belmont bandwagon, you need to act contrarian again simply to seem different from them, more independent, and keep up appearances as a cutting-edge alternative weekly? Your writers’ nasty attacks on those other local papers seem blatantly biased, and hypocritical.
—Walter R. Dominguez
It is disappointing to see that the L.A. Weekly has become the latest victim of the very serious, very expensive lobbying and public-relations campaign being waged by O’Melveny & Myers, the law firm whose future is at stake due to the bad advice it gave its client, the L.A. Unified School District, and which has been on a committed campaign to turn around public opinion about Belmont. It is amazing how people — including your reporters — can mention but overlook the relevance of seven people who were evicted from their homes recently due to explosive methane building up in their basements near the Belmont site. Just because the old Belmont school was built on the same unsafe oil field, this means we ought to take chances on another one, now that we know the potential liabilities?