Thursday, September 7, 2000
Legal is not offensive, it''s the "barely" part. The idea that these girls are as close as possible to illegal is the selling point. Not only are they as young as possible, but they are often portrayed as small children posed with dolls and teddy bears.
However, like the cover says, it''s barely legal, and I am not about to challenge the First Amendment. What I am challenging is the idea that neighborhood stores have the right to keep their porn out in the open where children''s eyes are exposed.
Since I attended a city council meeting last month and asked for help in controlling my neighborhood store, I have gotten a lot of attention but no one seems willing to debate the real issues. The first issue is legal and the second is philosophical. The legal issue could be solved quickly by a city ordinance requiring adult magazines to be segregated in another area like adult videos or drug paraphernalia in a head shop. The second issue has to deal with people who profit from sexualizing children. If money is all that matters, then so be it. Let us use the market forces to bring about social change.
Take a look at what is being sold in your local corner store, then let the store owner know how you feel about it being peddled in your neighborhood, next to the candy.
India Weeks, Monterey
Blame Silicon Valley
I was born at Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula 29 years ago. I have grown up all over the Peninsula from Carmel Valley to Monterey, graduating from Carmel High School. My grandfather came from Sicily to Monterey when he was 7 years old and my grandmother still lives in the family home in Monterey. My husband has also been a lifelong "local."
We both work at local restaurants, enjoying our rented Carmel house (two bedrooms, living room w/fireplace, dining room, front and back yards, and two-car garage) for the last six and a half years. Our 7 year old daughter attends California''s "number one" elementary school, Carmel River School.
Our rent has been $850 per month but now our luck has run out. Our landlord has decided to sell.
I pick up the paper and look at rentals for the first time in nearly seven years. I am shocked, disgusted and scared half to death. "What is going on here?" I ask my husband. "What happened to our Peninsula?" He says, "Silicon Valley. It''s cheaper to rent here and commute." So all my wonders come together.
All the traffic? All the new construction? All the re-construction? Where have all the local faces gone?
But the worst wonder is "where do we go?" The rents have become so extravagant. The American dream of buying our own home has gone the way of the dodo and Democracy: extinct. I never believed I could face the possibility of becoming homeless in this place that I have always known as home.
Lisa A. Balesteri, Carmel
This letter is directed to those who have witnessed over the last decade a continuous degradation in the quality of their life due to an unrelenting flow of new people into their neighborhood, town or city. When land was plentiful and relatively inexpensive, the massive flow of immigrants meant greater production efficiency and a higher standard of living. There comes a point, however, when agricultural and developable land become scarce due to overpopulation. The indicators are high rents and housing costs, gridlocked highways, scarcity of water and electricity, high fuel costs and overcrowded parks. If you believe all of the above-mentioned indicators are present, and that overpopulation is the cause, then it''s incumbent on the reader to act to help curtail population growth as neither major party will address this issue. The reason they are reluctant to deal with this juggernaut of excessive growth is because they are beholden to special interests who profit shamefully from legislation that allows 910,000 immigrants to enter our country each year. An accelerated population growth may serve the economic interests of a few, but it devastates the quality of life for the many. Add your voice to the discontented many by urging your congressperson to vote for HR41 and HR71 that reduces immigration back to 225,000 per year.
Rose Lopez, Salinas