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Letters to the Editor

Paradise Grieves

"Smoke Alarm" (Cover Story, Nov. 12) by Jessica Lussenhop is one of the best articles I have read in a long time. As a journalist, I truly appreciate and respect the time and effort that the author extended to write this piece. Metro is to be commended for giving this writer the space to so eloquently express herself on behalf of two compassionate people whose story she told.

To Valerie and Michael Corral, my deepest sympathies in losing the paradise that was so much a part of your lives. Valerie is absolutely right ... the land has a heart and soul and that part of paradise will grieve the loss of its caretakers.

Virginia McCullough


Growth Plan

Re "Smoke Alarm": Your article about the demise of WAMM, and the federal government's raid on its medical marijuana garden was truly sad.. ... but it also caused me to opine about the demise of the Republican Party, as it begins to contemplate its dismal future as the Grand "OLD" Party, made up of only old people and old ideas in combination with the Republican party's near extinction of any elected officials in New England and along the West Coast. The main difference between the young and old is one group is open to new ideas and the other resists them. Yet the obvious answer to the GOP's current conundrum lies with its largely ignored and disrespected libertarian stepchildren. Imagine how a political candidate who favors marijuana legalization would be received at the Berkeley or Columbia campus ...think Dennis Peron and Ron Paul. Now you're getting the picture, but unfortunately for the GOP, it still isn't.  

Travis Kimball, San Jose

I'd Buy It

Re "Smoke Alarm": Thanks for this lovely and heartbreaking story. Ms. Lussenhop is a terrific writer. Her piece will surely find its way to Valerie's millionaire. Wish I had the dough. I'd buy the place in a heartbeat.

Bonnie Blodgett, St. Paul, Minn.


Re "Smoke Alarm": Great story on WAMM, excellent reporting and editing.

Susie Bright, Santa Cruz


Ignorant and Divisive

Re "The New Rules" (MetroMusic, Nov. 12): This was the most ignorant article I have ever read. Imagine if you were in charge of this country. These musicians backed who they felt was right, so you are going to talk crap about them because they stood up for their beliefs. Even though I voted for Obama, I'm not giving crap to McCain voters; they voted for who they thought was right, freedom of speech. Daddy Yankee voted on the issues of immigration, a big deal for the largest minority group in America. Even though he (and I) are Puerto Rican and don't have to deal with immigration, Latinos need to stick together and support each other. You and Fat Joe need to get over that, they stood up for something they believed in, who the hell are you to tell them otherwise?

Julius V. Cajigas, Chicago, Ill.


My Streets, Too

Re "The Streets of Where I'm From" (Cover Story, July 25, 2007, via This is really the greatest article in the world. I know it's been a few years since it was written, but since I first read it when it was initially printed, the article has stuck with me and I finally feel like I have the chance to pay the proper amount of respect to it.

This article has inspired me to do something. I am in a photography class at San Jose City College, where I am currently studying the field of Graphic Design. Our class has been instructed to do a Photo Essay, and this article has inspired me to take the same paths that Gary Singh traveled and to capture the urban decay, oddities, people, places and things that litter the little mentioned corners of San Jose in 35 mm Black & White.

I thank both Metro and Mr. Singh for the amazing article and I look forward to maybe sharing my work with my friend, classmates and the world.

Jason S. Veggian, San Jose

Jason, all we can say is: be careful when following in the footsteps of Gary Singh.—Editor

Baggage Handler

I want to thank Ben Marks for writing with such deep understanding about "Raising the Voices," my current solo exhibition in honor of my 70th birthday at the Community School of Music and Art in Mountain View ("Family Baggage," Stage, Oct. 29). He captured the intent of my art, which honors my immigrant parents, our family, community and culture, which is universally linked to those Americans whose lives began in foreign lands. We all have stories, and Ben has admirably told of my efforts to present these narratives to the multicultural American art landscape.

Flo Oy Wong, Sunnyvale