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Letters to the Editor 

Week of Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Call for Fiscal Accountability

A new concept for City Hall: This is the best article yet on the SFO Enterprises scam ["Noir You See It, Noir You Don't," Matt Smith, Aug. 10]! Though its predecessors were wonderful for bringing the outrageous actions of the airport staff to public view, this article brings home the ongoing problem this city has in accountability for VERY large sums of money. I want competent, objective oversight of my public funds, damn it! And I want SFO Enterprises shut down, closed out, and audited, right now.

Nancy Wuerfel

I ♥ Katy

But doesn't everyone?: I have not read SF Weekly for a couple of years now, as I was not finding writing that resonated with my personality, sense of humor, interests, etc. But recently someone told me to check out the Bouncer column that Katy St. Clair writes about S.F. bars and whatnot, guaranteeing me that I would love it. Well, I am so in love with the column I wanna marry it. I read the entire archive on your Web site over the course of two days and proceeded to get almost no work done because of it. I sat at my desk and laughed my ass off, snorting frequently. (It's gotta be really funny to bring on the dreaded snort.)

Then I saw that she wrote the cover story ["A Very Special Concert," Aug. 3]. And what a story. I am so very impressed. Very few writers could combine the traits that St. Clair brought to the issue: humor, irreverence (especially for all the usual PC crud), deep compassion, and a genuine interest in her clients and their welfare, as well as the ability to comment on pop culture in a hilarious and insightful way. (Huey Lewis is the retarded version of Springsteen? Brilliant.)

I made several friends read the article, and each had a similar reaction: They laughed really hard and yet were close to tears a couple times. It made a big impression on them, and they are officially in the St. Clair convert category, just as I am. Maybe it's time to start a cult.

So thank you for featuring her work, and please make her write lots more for those of us who were, until recently, quite bored and disillusioned with the weekly alternative papers. It's nice to be woken up with a big laugh.

K. Greene

Scientology Needs No Defense

Here are 281 words of not being offended, just in case: Harmon Leon, you must be losing your touch. I'm a Scientologist and I'm not really offended by your article about my church ["World Recruiting Championships: Scientology Versus Crunch Gym," Infiltrator, Aug. 3]. I suppose your reference to our E-meters as lie detectors should offend me. They don't detect lies, they detect thoughts, especially stressful thoughts. This of course is proven since your whole trip to our church was a lie, and nothing happened when they put you on the E-meter. I guess you can lie and attempt to make fun of people's lives with no stress at all. But then since lie detectors don't detect lies either, I guess you could call anything a lie detector.

I suppose you hoped to hold our church up to ridicule as we "sell" our services. The entirety of our movement (religious, social, or business, whatever you think of it) is dedicated to helping people live better lives. This requires addressing all aspects of life, spiritual and material. To really help someone, there needs to be a change in his or her life, one that they agree upon.

Forcing change on people doesn't help anyone. For instance, we could just feed homeless, but that would just help them stay the same. We could throw them into housing they don't want, but they would just leave or ruin it.

Ultimately convincing a person to change is a sales job. Anyone who helps anyone change is selling them on changing. That's what we do. If you don't like it, don't be a Scientologist. Be something you want to be. We would like that, particularly if it was something that contributes to the lives of the people around you.

Richard Scott Trafton
Lower Haight

A more concise view: I enjoyed your article and the comparison of Scientology and Crunch Gym. Pretty sad analysis in that they seem to use the same recruiting techniques.

Chris Mentzer
Mesa, Ariz.

lowercase complaint

and our snotty decision to display shirley in all her uncapitalized glory: how can you print such lies ["Hung's Jury," Music, Aug. 3]. i have been a fan of billy ray cyrus for 10 years and there is no way he would use the words you did in that article. that is not how he talks. also he would never say things like this against anyone. i feel you owe billy ray cyrus an appology [sic] and his fans also.

shirley barrow
lady lake, fla.


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