RE: "Someone Has to Do It" [News, Sept 10], a guest editorial written by the Mental Health Association of Portland's Jason Renaud and Jenny Westberg regarding the lack of data being kept on police shootings.
Hope you know the composition and editing of this piece is what I might expect from the [New York Review of Books], [New York Times], or New Yorker. Terrific control of tone and voice. Whatever part in this was yours or your editor's... prize-worthy.
RE: "Somewhere Else" [Everything as Fuck, Sept 3], regarding ongoing hostilities between longtime Portlanders and newcomers.
I've been in this town my whole life. I used to like it when I was about 13 years old and thought Korn was cool; I'm 28 now and figured out that Portland, like Korn, also sucks. Maybe the problem "oldcomers" have with newcomers is that they are loud-spoken fake liberals who wear their controlling politics on their sleeves. Sorry to give a little bit of pushback on this, but [it's] the last thing a brown guy like me wants to hear, considering that I have and will continue to be hassled and profiled by the racist-ass Portland police; given shit service at hip dive bars in my gentrified old 'hood 'cause I wear a Blazers jersey rather than a Timbers scarf; and told to hold my tongue by a bunch of drunk hipsters when I tell y'all how you are directly contributing to a perpetuation of the same busted-ass bourgeois system that has been in place in Portland, Oregon, for the last 100 years. Do you all know that Portland ends at 162nd, not 82nd? Quit voting down taxes for Portland Public Schools and quit talking shit on poor people who live in Gresham; they're just people trying to get by. Thanks for not having kids.
IAN KARMEL RESPONDS! Since you didn't really get the point of my column, I guess I'll just try to address your points... maybe if they had kids they'd care more about schools. I absolutely don't believe you've been given bad service because you wore a Blazers jersey. If someone tells you to hold your tongue, tell them to fuck off, I don't care if they're a hipster. Hipster, by the way, has become a uselessly encompassing term. I do know where Portland ends; I'm from Portland. I'm capable of reading maps. When I write about Portland, I tend to write about Portland as a cultural force that affects the world as a whole, and that shit doesn't tend to happen in the suburbs. When Tigard, or Gresham, or Beaverton, or SE 148th and Powell becomes the epicenter of culture in our city, I'll write about that. If it hurts your feelings that the street you grew up on isn't what people think of when people think of Portland, I suggest you do something to change that. Until you do, I continue to welcome people to our city who actually want to contribute. Everyone has to move here at some point, right? Or is Covarrubias a Chinookan name, Carlos?
RE: "Ask a Soiled Mattress Down by the River" [New Column!, Sept 10], a returning guest column published at the request of reader Alex.
TO THE MERCURY VIA VOICEMAIL—I applaud the responsiveness of the Mercury, as far as the people. Responsive to the needs of the people! I'm speaking specifically about the Soiled Mattress Down by the River. I found a candidate I can vote for in this next election, a non-fascist candidate that readily responds when somebody puts out the call to have a question answered for help. The Soiled Mattress Down by the River was there. Better than any kind of Democratic/Republican Party that can only serve up wars to the working class. Soiled Mattress Down by the River, we await more words of wisdom. Thank you.
YOU ARE WELCOME. What's more, we will extend to you two tickets to the Laurelhurst Theater for coming up with the brilliant ideas of nominating Soiled Mattress for work in the public service of elected office. Surely the world would be a better place for us all if this political action succeeded.