By Joseph Tsidulko
By Patrick Range McDonald
By David Futch
By Hillel Aron
By Dennis Romero
By Jill Stewart
By Dennis Romero
By Dennis Romero
Erin Aubry Kaplan’s “Schwarze in the Family” [October 14–20] sent me back several decades. At the Westside Jewish Community Center on Olympic Boulevard, I had volunteered as a lifeguard at its pool and as one of the counselors to the Travel Club, a teenage coed group. One day I saw and heard a woman in a concerned voice ask a staff person the question “There are schwarze here?” I approached, thinking I might attempt to raise her consciousness, for we all make foolish statements which we later wish we hadn’t. When I got close enough, I saw on her bare arm the dark tattooed numbers. I turned away and never spoke, thinking that if the experience of being in those dreaded camps had not inspired an awareness of the universality of humanity, there was probably nothing I could say that would. Neither she nor the many racists, from politicians (whether legislative representatives or members of the LAUSD) to police officers and school administrators, whom I have encountered over the years, deterred me or dampened my goal to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable. Such is the baggage that must be carried in a society which, as the Jack Nicholson character exclaims in A Few Good Men, “. . . the truth, you can’t handle the truth . . .” That’s America. Ms. Aubry Kaplan didn’t say so, but didn’t anyone say, “Oh, of course, he/we doesn’t/don’t mean you”?
—F. Daniel Gray
I appreciated Erin Aubry Kaplan’s column and was sad to hear of her experience. I attend an Orthodox synagogue with a few African-American members, and have heard the “S word” numerous times, when they were not present. When I object, I’m usually told that it is not the equivalent of the “N word,” but is neutral, like “African-American,” merely descriptive. I don’t buy it — but that is one explanation for the behavior of some Jews that Erin did not include in her analysis of the painful event.
Evangelicals for Choice?
The following is in regard to the article “All in the Family” by Lou Dubose [October 14–20].
Please don’t think that evangelical Christians (I am one) are so hell-bent on the appointment of a Supreme Court nominee who would overturn Roe v. Wade. I don’t think we want it overturned, at least not within the Supreme Court. We understand that the Constitution shouldn’t be hijacked for any reason. The Supreme Court is not the place for establishing law for the U.S.
Any eighth-grade student would know that the place for laws to be made lies within the states. If it should be a matter that would affect the whole country, then we would have a national referendum to decide the matter. So, why all the concern? Are liberals afraid that the tide is turning and that now conservatives are going to do what they did in establishing a national law out of thin air? Liberals hijacked the Constitution in establishing Roe v. Wade; most of us know that. At least, many evangelicals realize that if the highest court establishes a new law, when another political party or any other ideology gains a foothold and that party overturns an existing law, we could be in for who knows what. If a Muslim becomes U.S. president, we might be in for more than even what we’re dealing with now as it concerns religious beliefs. Roe v. Wade would be a gnat. Do you think we can’t see that? Get a clue. Evangelicals don’t want Roe v. Wade overturned by the Supreme Court.
But We Love the Valley
Now I must confess — I feel like a lurker, a pedophile, no less. Like the guy yesterday with his long-lens video camera across the street from cheerleaders’ practice on the high school field on Valley Circle in . . . oh, wait, you’re not interested in that; it’s not part of your geographical Los Angeles! Sorry, forgot the rule: East L.A., Venice or Hollywood only.
Anyway, yes, a lurker. Outside of a couple of interviews with actual older people and the welcome Harold Meyerson, I slogged through anecdote after anecdote from authors reminiscing with their fave L.A. memory from way back in 1985, 1989 or 1991! Wow, I didn’t even know people were alive back then! Name to the contrary, I suppose the L.A. Weekly never claimed to speak for us over-40 Valley residents. Nope, nothing to see here but chicken ranches.
What About the Young?and Poor?
After reading this week’s Weekly[October 14–20], specifically the blurb on Brent Shapiro, I have to ask myself, Why? Why should I or any of your readers care about Brent Shapiro? What did he ever do, besides hitting the sperm lottery? Were there no other young men and women who died in L.A. during the same week? Was this the only death worthy of reporting? How about all of the ones in South-Central L.A. that go unnoticed? The more I read your rag, the more I think it should be the West L.A. Weekly. Somehow you seem to think that L.A. only exists west of La Brea.