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Letters to the Editor



Bright Ideas

To the Editor:

Because my family will be relocating to Memphis this fall, I read with interest your article entitled "Bright Ideas" (May 19th issue). While there were some terrific suggestions put forth, I wanted to take issue with some of the comments of Carol Coletta.

Coletta states that "Memphis is likely the most logical choice for people without children in their households, immigrants, people who go out frequently, people who want a more maintenance-free lifestyle. If so, let's develop a deep understanding of their needs and serve them."

This type of thinking is a major misstep in creating and sustaining a revitalized city, where people live near where they work and support local businesses and become involved in the neighborhoods.

One of the many challenges facing cities is that this type of engineering has created "childless cities." The urban pioneers who created these vibrant downtown communities do not remain invested in the community they helped build once they have children. Our family (including two children) plans to pay the premium to live in the city and strive to help make the community and the city a vibrant place for those with children, as well as those without them.

My "bright idea" for Memphis is to learn from the mistakes of Seattle, San Francisco, and Portland, and to keep kids in the city.

Courtney Miller Santo

Vancouver, Washington

To the Editor:

We have too many people who don't take pride in Memphis or their own lives. If you are poor, work to change that; if you live in a crappy neighborhood, make the best of it by picking up trash and maybe even doing some painting. When something is given to you, like a community center, don't cover it in graffiti and other acts of vandalism. Parents need to concentrate on their children and encourage education as a goal instead of being either a rapper or professional athlete. These are simple truths that people ignore on a daily basis.

Chris Reynolds


Editor's note: We have received numerous responses to our request for your "bright ideas" for Memphis. (My favorite so far is to put The Pyramid on eBay.) We plan to publish the best (and most interesting) in a future issue, so keep those letters coming.

-- Bruce VanWyngarden (brucev@memphisflyer.com)


To the Editor:

Protocols, protocols, protocols, protocols, protocols, protocols, protocols, protocols, protocols, protocols, protocols, protocols, protocols, protocols, protocols. In his defense of President Bush's disengagement from a response to the threat of a plane near the White House, Scott McClellan cited "protocols" some 15 times (Verbatim, May 19th issue). He mentioned "situations and circumstances surrounding the situation" eight times.

These robotic responses reveal the press secretary's vapidity of thought, but they also show the lack of confidence this administration places in its own president. As Jay Leno quipped: "The president was reading a children's book during 9/11 and was riding his bicycle when the plane threatened the White House. What is he, 12 years old?"

Paul B. Brown


Age of Aquarium?

To the Editor:

I recently attended a pitch for the proposed AquariaMemphis as the attraction that would save The Pyramid. The literature I received assured me that the aquarium would contribute to a "more family-friendly downtown."

I asked if there were surveys of Memphians and tourists regarding their interest in visiting an aquarium here. There were none. I recently relocated here from Southern California and have been impressed by how much local entertainment venues relate to the culture of the city. Aquariums make sense in California, but Memphis? With no market research? Something seems fishy.

Linda Granell


CORRECTION: An article in last week's issue stated that a 45 percent cost savings could be obtained by using emulsified diesel. The actual savings is 4 to 5 percent.

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