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Letters to the Editor - A modest re-proposal January 15 2004

I love Creative Loafing, I really do. Therefore it pains and depresses me to inform you that my letter (Jan. 8) to the editor two weeks ago was, in fact, satire. Jon Avery's response letter has forced me to let down my oh-so-clever veneer and try to clear my good name. The fact that CL did not recognize satire is evident in that you published less than half of the letter (i.e. cutting the satire part), and so might as well have added "Town Nut" to my signature. So, please, let's kiss and make up. Please publish the entire letter (or something!) so that I can show my face again!

-- John Robinson, Virginia-Highland

Editor's note: Silly us. We didn't get it at first. Maybe we were in too much of a hurry to get out of here for the holidays. Here's the original letter.

I cannot express enough my relief that bars in Atlanta will now be forced to close at 3 a.m. It's about time the city recognized that it's during the hours of 4 to 5 a.m. that drunken violence is most likely to occur. As a resident of Virginia-Highland, I make it a point to be safe in my home by 3 a.m. since I witnessed a fatal shooting on the corner of Virginia-Highland at 4:30 a.m. That was over 13 years ago, and since that time I have not been out past 3 a.m. and, as a result, have not witnessed a shooting since. Critics may say that the violence problem is specific to Buckhead and that violence will now just take place earlier. Still, you can't be too safe.

Some have even suggested that customers will now drink more booze earlier and not take the time to sober up before driving home. What they don't realize is that it's not people's behavior, nor an inadequate security issue, nor the fact that people are permitted to bring handguns into bars; but it is that the hour between 4 and 5 a.m. has a certain intangible power to it that edges people toward violence. I have even felt its dark pressure myself from time to time.

I think we should view City Council's ruling as a new, outstanding precedent and apply it toward other problems in the city and the nation. We should study, for example, when school violence has typically occurred in the past and close schools during that time. Surely we would witness a dramatic decline in school violence. I've often noticed many homeless people congregating in Woodruff Park around noon and have read that an enormous amount of discarded sandwich wrappers fill the park after some do-gooders have given them hand-outs, causing a sanitation catastrophe. I believe that the problem of homelessness and the ensuing sanitary nightmare could both be solved by closing the park between the hours of noon and 1 p.m. This is simple common sense. Imagine the number of lives that could have been saved on Sept. 11 if the standard working shift was from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.! The terrorists would then be helpless. Similarly, a study must be done to discern at what times insurgents strike our troops in Iraq, and then a curfew for all citizens of that country and the violence would end! Ditto Palestine and Israel. If corporate CEOs are most likely to be embezzling or whatever from, say, 2:30 to 4:15 p.m., we could close the business during those hours. If airline pilots are most likely to drink from 9 to 11:30 a.m., grounding all flights during this period would save untold lives.

I am overwhelmed with joy that someone has finally recognized the answer to solving drunken handgun violence in this city. All you naysayers will be running with your tail tucked between your legs in a couple of years when the type of behavior that occurred in Buckhead has disappeared from our fine city. Until then, I will be returning home by 2 a.m. After all, there is no such thing as being too cautious. Falling on deaf ears

John Sugg: You're a leftist loser. I am going to get such a kick out of hearing what you have to say right after the 2004 election when we find out that we have four more years from a president who doesn't pander to Islamic terrorism. Neal Boortz has done more for this city than you or your crappy publication could ever dream of. NO ONE LIKES CREATIVE LOAFING. I am a 25-year-old male, and after asking every single one of my friends, I can't find one person who actually reads it (except maybe the personals). How many listeners do you think Boortz has? The more idiotic you sound, the better Boortz looks. Keep up the good work!

-- William Bradbury, Duluth

Get the joke?

I read your article in CL (as I do every week) and the following statement concerned me very much: "So, since the Iraqi Communists are in a united front with the Bushies and Boortz, I guess (by his logic) it follows ...

Boortz is a Communist dupe" (Fishwrapper, "Boortz is a Commie running dog," Jan. 8).

We get blamed for a lot, Mr. Sugg. We are called dangerous, anarchical, uneducated, ignorant, violent and dictatorial — often by the very people who have earned such description. Certainly, politics does make for strange bedfellows, but I assure you this: Red will never share that bed with Boortz, for it would be far worse than strange. Do not fret, Mr. Sugg. I appreciate the humor, though I must remind you, citizens of my native Atlanta actually buy the AJC — let's all hope they're bright enough to get the joke.

-- Leigh Craigmyle, Atlanta

Tearing down character

Thank you for bringing attention to the pattern that is developing in "historic" Midtown (Weekly Scalawag, Coro Realty, Dec. 18). Historic structures, such as the Piedmont Crest apartment building, are becoming endangered at the expense of "building Midtown's future." I have been inside this building and know that it can be renovated to its original glory. I don't understand why Coro Realty would want to tear it down only to build an imitation. The original can continue to add character to Midtown as it has for nearly a century.

-- Dillard Jones, Atlanta

?Straight-arrow Zell
So, Zell is a scalawag because he doesn't dance with those that brung him (Views, "CL's Scalawag of the Year," Dec. 25)? That's true only if you actually believe the one that brung him was Roy Barnes. I don't think so. On balance, it is hard to find a single issue on which his votes in the Senate are inconsistent with the voters in Georgia.

So who is it that he is supposedly "pissing all over?" When all is said and done, aren't Georgia voters and not Roy Barnes or even Scott Henry the ones who really brung him to the dance in the first place? And if that is the test, Zell is neither zigging nor zagging, but is leading the dance while staying very much in step with his constituents.

-- David Davis, Sandy Springs