Standing up to the big guy: Minister Christopher Muhammad is the only guy standing up to big business in San Francisco who hasn't sold out yet ["The Man Who Cried Dust," Lauren Smiley, Feature, 7/1]. What an insult to imply he's in it for the money. The city, Lennar Corporation, jealous leadership, and those on the state level are all working together. Trust me when I say San Francisco is not as progressive or liberal as one thinks. As long as you're progressive in safe and/or nonthreatening ways, you're all right with big business.
Muhammad is someone you have to go and hear for yourself. I read an article about him in the Chronicle, only to go to a town hall meeting and hear that this guy has passion (along with the pastors, environmentalists, and common folk who all came together) and factual evidence to back up everything. Had I gone by stories like [Smiley's], I would have been blind. I encourage everyone who reads this to be their own man or woman and hear Muhammad and his group for themselves.
Standing in the way of progress: I am astonished by the actions taken by and words spewed from Minister Christopher Muhammad. A reasonable person should be able to see that any one who disagrees with him is viewed and targeted as the enemy and subject to his harassment, veiled threats, and vilification.
It seems obvious that the development proposed by Lennar will change the Hunters Point shipyard area from a formerly unlivable site that is wasting away into a beautiful and much-needed diverse neighborhood with a range of housing and open space, with the added benefit of increasing employment opportunities.
Even after Minister Muhammad spoke with the [Environmental Protection Agency] about whether the asbestos data indicated "emergency levels," and the agency informed him that it did not, he still misrepresented their response when he addressed his followers shortly after the meeting. One must ask the question that, if his concern is genuine and he cares for the health and welfare of the students attending his school, then why doesn't he take a more proactive approach and relocate to an alternate site? He needs to get out of the way of progress.
via e-mail; no last name given
Don't push it: I attended my first SFCF [San Francisco CrosSFit] class more than three years ago and have gone back regularly ever since ["Ripped, Literally," Anna McCarthy, News, 7/1]. I can still vividly remember that first foggy morning, as well as the initial conversation with Kelly Starrett about my participation in the class. He discussed with me in detail my conditioning to date and whether I had any existing or recurring injuries. He also cautioned me to take it easy, and watched over me closely during that class and the first few that followed. I have seen him and all of the other coaches at SFCF do the same for countless athletes since. Just as important, the level and quality of instruction on a day-to-day basis is unparalleled. Nothing else in my experience begins to come close. I'm constantly getting instruction on what I am doing right or wrong, how I can improve, and how the various movements and routines should be performed.
I am sure there are some people who have pushed themselves too hard at CrosSFit, but I suspect in just about every instance this is due more to their own insecurity than anything else. The competitive element surely leads you to push harder, but I know what I can and can't do, when I need to rest, and when I need to scale back or modify an exercise or routine. All of these actions are accepted (even encouraged) and have kept me injury-free for more than three and a half years.
Scott C. Smith
No gain, lots of pain: As an ACE-certified [American Council on Exercise] personal and group fitness trainer, I find this article very disturbing. I also own an outdoor fitness program, and am most concerned about the health and well-being of my clients — especially those new to the program. I agree that one must ultimately take responsibility for one's health and know and understand one's limits. It is also the trainer's professional responsibility to lead clients through a safe and effective program. A program that repeatedly injures clients is not safe. In my opinion, if CrosSFit is going to go so far as to promote serious injuries such as kidney failure and muscle strains and tears with characters like Pukie the Clown and Uncle Rhabdo, then it is most definitely responsible and liable when clients develop such injuries.