Loading...
 

Letters to the Editor - September 20 2006

'The riot' by John Sugg and 'In search of ... Bill Berry' by Lee Valentine Smith

Online responses to last week's issue, which featured "The riot" by John Sugg and "In search of ... Bill Berry" by Lee Valentine Smith. Comment on this week's stories at atlanta.creativeloafing.com.

??
.com-ments are edited for space, not content, punctuation or grammar.

??
The Atlanta Race Riot

??
This seems pretty tame compared to a single day in Iraq. It seems to me the significance of this is overblown for purposes I'm not sure of. Certainly nothing is to be gained by agravating old wounds in youths totally unaffected by a small riot in a small town that occurred 110 years ago. Why don't you focus on the 50% dropout rate for a bit and ask yourself if this history lesson helps reduce this number. Media does not have to be a negative campaign without purpose.

??
-- Woody

??
Atlanta Race Riots

??
After opening a business in a small town west of Atlanta, I had an unfortunate encounter with one of the neighboring business owners, a black man, who took one look at me, a WHITE woman, and made a judgment about me based on my race. This judgement was that I was a racist. This was based upon no more information than that I was WHITE. He didn't know I was also GAY, or that I had spent 10 years with my last partner, who was a BLACK woman, or that my grown ITALIAN daughter had converted to JUDIASM years before AND had married a wonderful HISPANIC man. My life experience has been colorful and mixed with rich culture and beautiful people of varied decent. To make a very long story short, RNS Auto Center, and Girltech Automotive now operate side by side, in (almost) complete trust, respect and support of the other. It did however astonish me, that even as this man who so quickly threw out the race card at the mean white woman, I would later learn, he is extremely deficit in black history. I, with my lily white ass, know more about his racial history than he does! I think this article, as well as open, honest, sometimes extremely difficult conversation about the history of our acceptance of one another, is EXACTLY what Atlantans need. I will help this man with his black history, and he will teach me things about the black culture that I do not already know (like fish and grits taste good!), and that black or white, we really do have things to LEARN from & about each other. Oh, and by the way, kudos to Atlanta Radio's Q100 Bert Show, who I have heard on several occasions open their show to this kind of healing conversation. We can only grow stronger as a community from this and as I see it, that is a GOOD thing.

??
-- Kelly Bagwell

??
Purpose?

??
The article was an interesting look into the past, and I would like to do more reading on the subject. Are we supposed to run to city council demanding a historical marker? If that is what the citizens want, then that is okay with me. Or is this supposed to stoke the flames of racial hatred? For some black Atlantans, this article will confirm that all white Atlantans are racists. Or is this supposed to stir the guilt in white Atlantans? Maybe the reason that blacks continue to drop out of schools in droves, or have children out of wedlock, or shoot each other in the streets is in fact because my great, great, great, great grandfather that I have never even heard of killed a black guy in a riot 100 years ago. Ahhh...part of me thinks the article is a waste of time...part of me knows it is an interesting history lesson...and another part of me is sick to my stomach because I KNOW Mr. Sugg is twisting my mind with his destructive liberal agenda...but I don't know how. Ha!

??
-- Vince

??
Too bad you missed the 40 Watt show

??
The whole band was on stage at the 40 Watt for a local fundraiser? REM tribute on Tuesday — Bill Berry included. Too bad your sources didn't clue you in. Very cool. Video on YouTube, you tubesteak.

??
-- Wendell G.

??
It's Been Over For A Long Time

??
Bill Berry always seemed like a nice guy, but honestly how much difference has his absence made to a band whose worthwhile music was pretty much all generated in the time period represented in the CD you were listening to? With regard to the periodic reunions, I can only paraphrase the comments of a famous general: Scruffy. So morbid. A sentimental replica of a band long since vanished. No style at all!

??
-- Lawrence

??
Bills playing was like taking cotton out of your ears and hearing the sound right

??
Its quite obvious that Bill Berry had a huge impact on R.E.M.s sound. Their sound was mush crisper and the drums always cut thru the mixes. Im a drummer who was heavily influinced by Bills playing and have missed him dearly on Rems latest music. I have been praying he will decide to record with them on the next album, and restore them to their original sound just one more time and in time for the irs re-releases. even if he doesnt tour, just to hear that sound again would would restore a lot of faith in the sound that influinced many bands today. I just dont look forward to seeing him walk away again and feeling that loss I felt 9 years ago when my all time favorite band lost its driving force.

??
-- Kerry Shead

??
Bill's really cool....but

??
R.E.M. were great with Bill and have been fantastic without him. It is ludicrous to pretend that a band with 25 years history should sound the same after all these years. In fact it is to their credit and probably R.E.M.'s main strength that they've had the guts to move their sound on so regularly and successfully I'd love Bill to rejoin the band, cause he is a great drummer, but lets not pretend that it would herald a return to the 80's sound. I think that would be odd and possibly embarrassing. And the same people that harp on about the I.R.S. years would probably pick holes anyway, cause their musical taste seems to be stuck in a 20 year time warp. Good article by the way.

??
-- Ewan in Stirling Scotland