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Strike a pose
I appalud Mr. Gabriel for wishing to practice his tai chi in public spaces. This gentle and useful art is practiced around the globe by countless millions of people and has health benefits too numerous to mention here.
Whatever the reasons the security guards had for stopping him, it's a sad statement on the current post-9/11 mind-set. If Mr. Gabriel and his group have a practice at Campus Martius, I'd be inclined to join them, even if my tai chi is a bit rusty, and provided the security guards don't perceive my walking cane as a terrorist threat. —Stephen Dahnke, Ferndale
Let me preface my comments by saying that I'm from the UK, believe in a single-payer system, and would like to live in a Scandinavian-style, egalitarian society.
Having said that, I'm not surprised at all by the people of Massachusetts voting for Scott Brown. The American people, angry and desperate after a horrendous Bush presidency, are simply lashing out — and who can blame them? Barack Obama's slogan — "change we can believe in" — sounds now like a cruel hoax. Consider the following:
• Guantanamo still going strong
• Iraq war still going strong
• "Exit strategy" for Af-Pak involves 30,000 new troops, building of permanent bases
• Patriot Act still in full force
• No cuts to military-industrial complex, freezes for everyone else.
And, worst of all, the banks have been allowed to run amok. His inner circle are all bankers!
Ironically, if Coakley had won, he probably wouldn't have announced his recent populist measures, which are knee-jerk, too little and far too late.
The people are getting it at last: The two-party system is a two-headed snake, owned by special interests. It makes little difference who they actually vote for; it's a rigged game. Banks and HMOs and corporations control the process.
Bearing this in mind, why not vote for a more regular joe than an aloof, entitlement-minded Democrat?
Sadly, it's the only way a largely disenfranchised people can express themselves. If you kick even a gentle animal enough, it will strike back; he's not going to care whether its a Democrat or Republican.
I understand your frustration at the results, but calling the voters "idiots" and "lemmings" misses the real point. —George Ready, Windsor
Down and dirty
Re: Jack Lessenberry's "Tale of two cities" (Jan. 13), this is an excellent column and more like it are needed. It's a shame that our local neighborhood papers don't look into such issues. It would be nice to see a full-length feature detailing the current state and prognosis of Detroit's major suburbs. Bob Bruner might be right about us not wanting to know where the collected leaves and drained sewage go; but we would like an honest and relevant accounting of the state and its affairs, or of the cities in which we live. —Paul Natinsky, Royal Oak
That Metro Retro column is very cool. So much has changed, yet so much remains the same.
I would like to note: Benny and the Jets Band were in Metro Times 30 years ago! Very few bands stay together that long. I always like to point out our Tuesday gig at the Wayne Road Pub in Westland (20 years, every Tuesday) is one of the longest-running gigs anywhere! I also would like to thank Metro Times for its calendar section. Nothing supports local live music like a mention in the paper. Thanks! —Benny Jet, Inkster, myspace.com/bennyandthejets
Where are the cries about "Activist Judges" now? Our so-called Supreme Court last week handed over the electoral power of our nation to corporations and special interests (like unions) in their recent 5-4 partisan ruling. This should be opposed by conservatives and liberals alike. Their so-called justification is based on free speech. I believe wholeheartedly in free speech for people, but corporations and other special interests are not people! The five judges who ruled in favor of this decision have committed treason in my humble opinion. —Jason Dumas, Rochester
Erratum: In his column "International BAIT," Larry Gabriel gave the incorrect time for the show For My People. It airs on WKBD Channel 50 at 6:30 a.m. on Saturdays.
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