Letters to the Editor - My view April 22 2004

I read the “Locals Lonely” piece (Earshot, “Sharp Notes,” April 15) and the position taken seems a little confused, and past experience actually suggests otherwise.

From your piece: “Concert-goers often ignore bands that they don’t want to hear unless they are closely associated with the sound they came for. Second, most fans don’t look for a type of music, they look for a specific performer. For instance, if after the Strokes’ set, a fan wants to see Wyclef, they aren’t going to settle for just seeing Ishues because they’re both hip-hop.”

So basically you’re saying that fans will pay attention to a band if they are closely associated with the type of music they came for, BUT fans don’t come for a type of music, they come for specific performers regardless of type of music. Unhh?

Past experience at Music Midtown suggests the opposite. The X-Impossibles in 2001 went on the Locals Only stage right after the Wallflowers. Not “closely associated” sounds at all. The area was packed, the Wallflowers were boring, everyone turned around and a huge crowd formed in front of the X-Impossibles with a giant mosh pit. Can you captivate the captive crowd, regardless of type of music? I don’t think your Whigs will have a problem doing so going on [the Locals Only stage] before Fuel [on the 99X stage]. They’re a great live act.

There is only one local stage at Music Midtown. Should there be one for each stage repping each genre? Perhaps. Now that’s a story. But for now, there is just one, with many local bands repping many genres. It can’t be about trying to complete a jigsaw puzzle and perfectly matching genres. It is and it has always been about giving local bands, regardless of genre, a chance to play in front of a huge crowd and then see what they’ll do with that chance.

Finally, suggesting that the festival section “the 99X area lineups into genre blocks for the benefit of both fans and performers” doesn’t make sense, either, considering the state of music and fans these days. Radio doesn’t even do “genre blocks.” I wouldn’t suggest festivals get sterile and just block “sounds” together.

Just my opinion. I see it differently and look forward to catching the Whigs and all of the other local acts I’ve been hearing about. Regardless of genre.

-- Colin Cooley, Wicked West PR

br>?Who needs friends?
I, for one, am a bit tired of hearing those of us who oppose men marrying men being called bigots, haters and homophobes (“Shame on us,” April 8). Actually, I am quite liberal and tolerant of others, but there is a difference between tolerance and “anything goes.” This is Atlanta, but it is still part of the South (as much as many wish otherwise). Anything does not go here. It is not New York or San Francisco.

Marriage is one of the oldest cultural stables in the world. It is the very cornerstone of civilization. And it should remain as such. If gays want legal protections or things such as health insurance and tax benefits, a civil union would accomplish the same thing. It seems to me that this is not about rights but about militant gay activists attempting to ram a larger agenda down the throats of a citizenry that does not share their view of the world. They have succeeded in Massachusetts by using the courts to usurp the citizens of that state.

The reason we need to amend the state Constitution is to prevent the Georgia Supreme Court from getting any ideas of doing the same thing here. That does not mean all of us “hate” gays. If gays are serious about rights, they should press for civil unions and quit pissing off 80 percent of the population, because in the end, they will only lose by making enemies instead of friends.

-- Kevin Kitchen, Austell

br>?Not like us
I was struck by two things while reading Kevin Griffis’ article, “Shame on us” (April 8): the surprisingly anti-democratic nature of Griffis’ views and his supreme condescension toward Georgians in general, and his extra helping of condescension for Georgians who don’t share his opinions about the gay-marriage ban.

Of course, these two things are related. Griffis thinks it is a terrible idea to let the voters of Georgia decide the fate of gay marriage because he is sure most Georgians are so backwoods ignorant they do not share his enlightened views on the matter.

I don’t begrudge Griffis his anti-democratic views, given the political realities of the situation. His condescension and arrogance, though, are quite off-putting (apropos of the publication, of course). His opinions might be more attractive to a larger audience in Georgia if they didn’t drip with disgust toward a majority of Georgians.

-- Keith Cox, Atlanta

br>?Speak for yourself
I liked the story about Georgia voters and Zell Miller (“Shame on us,” April 8). One thing I didn’t like is you implicitly equating gun owners with morons. I happen to be a gun owner who supported Zell Miller in 1992 in his effort to take down the ‘56 flag, I support gay marriage, I support a secular government, etc.

And I’m gun-totin’, college-educated, professional Bubba!

I understand what you are saying and I have enjoyed your work greatly in the past. I am tiring of the endless equating of gun owner-equals-moron thing that passes through so much of the popular media today.

I guess I just wanted you to know that not all of us are assholes.

-- Jon Avery, Atlanta

br>?Fear makes you crazy
I enjoyed your take on Zell and his cronies (“The land of Zell” in “Shame on us,” April 8). The last quote, from AIDS Survival Project Executive Director Jeff Graham, “We’ve got gay politicians, gay business leaders, gay church-leaders, etc.,” really made me think. I think he’s right that a lot of people really do hate us — or at least are afraid of us. I find that people usually hate because they are afraid.

-- Gary Himes, Grant Park

br>?Pay for what you get
Zell Miller is the best politician in America today (“The land of Zell” in “Shame on us,” April 8). I find it amusing that columnists like you are a thousand times more close-minded than the people you criticize. Having formulated an opinion is not close-minded. It’s rational. It’s what adults do. Grow up! If you don’t like the way most Georgians feel, not the few who share your opinion, you are welcome to leave for San Francisco and live with the nuts out there. I actually looked at Creative Loafing for the first time in 20 years this week and thought perhaps I had been missing something. Then I read your column and realized I had not. When you get something for free, the words inside are worth what you pay!

-- Steve Graham, Lawrenceville