Letters to the Editor for Jan 18, 2007
Thursday, January 18, 2007
A LESSION IN SCI-FI SUB-GENRES
I didn’t care for the opening phrase of Dan Hudak’s synopsis on Eragon. Dan needs to do a little research in the sub-genres of what movie book writers call Sci-Fi/Fantasy.
The four sub-genres are Fairy Tales, Science Fiction, Sword and Sorcery, and Idiot Fantasy. Star Wars is Idiot Fantasy; it’s a Fairy Tale set in outer space. Eragon is Sword and Sorcery. It involves bladesmanship and magic; it’s set on earth during the Bronze Age; it’s rooted in Celtic and Slavic mythology. Lord of the Rings (the other movie Dan accuses Eragon of ripping-off) is also Sword and Sorcery; however, it is rooted in German and Norse mythology.
In conclusion, Dan, if you hated Eragon, that’s OK! But try not to call it a rip-off of Star Wars and Lord of the Rings. Try calling it either a crappy Sci-Fi/Fantasy or a crappy Sword and Sorcery epic. —James Jauregui | Carmel
AFRICAN LIVES ARE NOT WORTHLESS
Imagine that the Bush administration believed that suspected Al-Qaeda members were holed up in a village in southern England. Imagine that, instead of making an attempt to capture the suspects, the administration chose to launch air strikes on the village. Imagine that the air strikes killed over 100 innocent British citizens, while failing to kill one of the suspected terrorists.
If such a scenario were to unfold, I would assume that it would provoke international outrage and dominate the news for days, if not weeks.
Imagine that the Cuban government decided to go after some of the terrorists who have been using Florida as a base to attack Cuba for the past 47 years. Imagine that the Cuban government launched air strikes on a Miami neighborhood in an attempt to kill these terrorists. Imagine that the air strikes killed over 100 people in Miami and failed to kill any of the terrorists. I would assume that the Bush administration would respond by bombing Cuba into the Stone Age.
But when the Bush administration kills over 100 innocent Africans in Somalia in a failed attempt to assassinate suspected Al-Qaeda members, the incident barely makes it to the front page. Certainly no one in the mainstream media is calling the attacks “terrorism” or suggesting that those responsible for ordering the air strikes should be prosecuted for their crimes.
Why is there no outrage over the deaths of 100 innocent Somalians? Do you suppose it has anything to do with the color of their skin? —Phillip Crawford | Monterey
CITIZENS NEED TO VOTE
The Leagues of Women Voters of the Salinas Valley and Monterey Peninsula support the Rancho San Juan Referendum and the Community General Plan Initiative. The Board of Supervisors has prevented these measures from going before the voters, even though an initiative requesting such a vote was signed by more than the required number of voters.
The Board’s approval of the fourth effort to develop a General Plan (GPU 4) enables Rancho San Juan to be vested, something the Leagues oppose until the voters have had a chance to speak. It also makes GPU 4 the prevailing plan until voters have a chance to ratify or repeal it.
A referendum on GPU 4 puts that plan on hold until a vote of the people, and it guarantees that the voters have a right to vote on the Plan before it goes into effect, in a clear and meaningful election. The Board’s action adopts the Plan with a legally unenforceable statement that it will submit that Plan to a possible “repeal” by the voters six months from now—in which a “yes” vote means you are against the Plan. And the Board has reversed itself before.
We urge the public to join the Leagues in signing the petition for the referendum. —Marilyn Maxner | Monterey; Mary Ellen Dick | Salinas
The letter-writers are the presidents of the Leagues of Women Voters of the Salinas Valley and Monterey Peninsula.
SUPES ARE BAFFLING
English is my second language, but I don’t think that is the reason I am confused by the actions of the County Board of Supervisors regarding a referendum on the General Plan for Monterey County, GPU 4. As I understand it, the supervisors maybe proposed a ballot measure in which “yes” means “no” and “no” means “yes.”
It is immaterial whether I support or oppose the GPU 4. I want to vote on the plan. Therefore, I have signed the petition to place the General Plan on the ballot in June. I understand the referendum petition.
All I ask is K.I.S.S., Keep It Simple, Supervisors. Let us vote. —Xavier K. Maruyama | Carmel