TO ALAN PROBANDT: I'm no expert, but I seriously doubt if facial tattoos qualify as a disability allowing one to receive government payments ["Letters," June 6, in which the writer postulates that facial tattoos should be outlawed]. Do fat chicks get disability payments because they're less likely to be hired as secretaries? I don't think so.

But why would you assume these young men are "unemployable"? They might be musicians. With the number of rock 'n roll millionaires out there, you can't deny that it's a valid career choice. Or perhaps they're self-employed, maybe as tattoo artists. There are a lot of jobs out there in which one never comes in contact with the public. There are many "decent" employers who, either by law or company policy, aren't allowed to discriminate based on appearance. I work for the post office. My tattoo, which you would probably find offensive, isn't visible with my uniform on, but if it were, the post office would have no recourse. They can tell me what to wear on the job, but how I decorate my skin, hair, nails, etc. is, as it should be, my choice.

While I would probably agree that the tattoos you described are offensive, distasteful, ugly, and generally not a good idea, I refuse to discount the whole person and the unique gifts they might bring to society just because I don't personally care for their body art. Let's not jump to conclusions about the people and lives behind the tattoos.

Annette Redmond


TO THE EDITOR: [Re: "Free Speech Chokehold," News, June 6]. Some wrestling matches are real and thus, a sporting event; some matches are fake and thus, "theater." Both types of matches, however, can be dangerous. POW's arguments show their lack of understanding of the issues; making the fact known that the "wrestling" is fake doesn't tell us anything. We all know (most) wrestling is fake, already. In order to keep wrestler's working conditions safe, in order to keep wrestlers from being taken advantage of by managers, in order to keep fans from having to give up their personal safety when viewing a match, the Boxing & Wrestling Commission was created.

Both "boxing" and "wrestling" are legal words. Advertising an event as a "boxing" or "wrestling" match is like advertising yourself as a "lawyer" or "medical doctor" without having the necessary credentials. This isn't "The Punkers vs. The Man," this is a case of the state trying to keep people from getting seriously hurt.

The Boxing & Wrestling Commission is one of the closest things we have to a socialist organization within the state government. The rules the Commission enforces are designed to keep wrestlers and fans alike from having to give up their rights and safety in order to line the pockets of promoters who do not give them the same value. The Commission isn't trying regulate entertainment, it's trying to regulate advertising.

Paul Bradley


DEAR PHIL BUSSE: I just finished reading your article on bear poaching ["Running Bear," June 6]. These are terrible crimes and the criminals should be punished much more severely than they are.

Your article was well written, and I take issue with only one point you made: "Hunters recommend shooting the bear in the mouth, then knocking off the jaw... "

I feel this is an erroneous statement. Poachers may recommend this, but a hunter would not. The tactic you describe the person using is designed to protect dogs. Hunting bears with dogs is not legal in Oregon, therefore the advice you received must have been given by a poacher. I'm not a big game hunter, however, every hunter I know would much prefer a one shot kill and not see the animal needlessly suffer.

Corey Neistadt


[FROM THE EDITOR: "Frank Cassano's Imbecile Parade" (page 5) is by far the most controversial column the Mercury has ever run, as the following letters will undoubtedly prove.]

TO FRANK CASSANO, VIA VOICEMAIL: "Yeah, you're a little cowardly dipshit. Your attack on Mr. Michael J. Fox was horseshit ["Imbecile Parade," June 6]. You are an asshole and a fool. And essentially man, that is garbage, that is disgusting, that is fucked up. And you are a complete fucking creep for doing this. Your thing, your attack on him is so FUCKIN' evil. You should just resign right now out of shame, you cunt. Other than the fuck that nothing you've ever written has been funny, you're FUCKED UP, you're EVIL, you're STUPID. You understand that? You attacked someone with Parkinson's disease, you cocksucker. You're a motherfucking IDIOT! Come on fool, I'll be here tomorrow morning, you won't be able to get out of bed because you're too fucked up. FUCK YOU! This is horseshit! And I'm going to send this back to the Reader in Chicago and tell them what a complete fucked up mess you are. Thanks, bye."

HEY MERCURY PEOPLES: Damn, my man Frank Cassano done gone an' dropped his ballz this week. How so? Well, his slag-shot across Sandra's Bullocks failed to include any reference whatsoever to her being an IMBECILE! C'mon Frank, stay on track! Am I wrong, or has every other one of FC's salient "critiques" included at least one reference to the slagee as being an all-out IMBECILE? And, double damn, Frank slips on his own spew-dew when he forgets to refer to MJ Fox as an IMBECILE as well. What gives? Aren't there "standards" to be upheld?

Additionally, and at the risk of sounding like a soft-hearted and prudish hypocritical IMBECILE, I'm not sure Frank should attack MJ Fox's very un-funny malady. It's one thing that Fox is a has-been shitsville actor and/or über-dork, but I doubt that he chose to contract Parkinson's. Come on now Frank, keep stickin' it to the gorgeous millionaire klepto-sluts, but consider tonin' it down on the ones that have been blindly side-swiped by an indifferent cosmos.

Bob Priest

TO FRANK CASSANO: A lot of women have "moustaches." Get real! And talking about men with severe disabilities like that is not nice at all. But more importantly, YOU ARE NOT FUNNY!


TO THE EDITOR: Concerning the fat man with the beard There is a certain line of humanity one should not cross. In regards to the execration of M.J. Fox by the fat man with the beard, it is a shame you have no control over what goes into your "weekly." YOU CAN'T SAY THAT.

Insult the wealthy, the healthy, and all the ones who truly deserve it, but not a dying man who has done nothing but make honest entertainment. It is obvious that this fat man is a bitter flop. It is a shame you can't keep this lonely cocksucker from feeding his face with other people's doings and throwing it up all over your magazine. F*cking Fat Food Eater! This man would be nowhere without the help of people who accomplished more by the time they were twenty than this fat man could in his entire, horrible, miserable existence. Please stop feeding him. Make him work it off. Or don't. Fire him. I don't care.

C. Lloyd


TO ANN ROMANO: Pack your bags, load up your Land Rover, and unhook Kip's butt-plug and ball gag. If my negotiations w/ W.S. Humphrey succeed, you will indeed--as you forecasted--be moving to page 43 where your column will run alongside out-call ads for NAMBLA and Bestialphiles.

Cassano's "Imbecile Parade," on the other hand, will be catapulted onto a full page from whence he will continue to smite legions of moral/ethical defectives from your genetic cesspool with ever more dire and horrid invective.

In exchange for these editorial maneuverings, I have agreed to toss Humphrey's salad (massage his prostate w/my tongue) 20 mins/day, right after lunch, for one business week. Yes, it will be a messy job, but I am willing to sacrifice my olfactory senses for Cassano's expanded glory and triumphant rampage.

Truck Saxon

HI MERCURY: I have enjoyed your paper for years, and I think Frank Cassano is one of the best things about it. The paper comes out on Thursday and I'm still laughing about it on Sunday. Don't get rid of him, please!


TO THE MERCURY IMBECILES: Frank Cassano's "Imbecile Parade" is the best thing your weekly publication has going for it. Frank is honest; he calls it like he sees it and doesn't hold back. This quality is lacking in so many "media personalities." It is refreshing to hear Mr. Cassano's scathing criticisms. While it seems that you are attempting to mount some sort of campaign against him, I can't help but wonder, why? Are you afraid that Frank will eventually turn to you for his next column, that you will be exposed for the fucking imbeciles that you are?

Frank Cassano is a voice that needs to be heard, and you should not attempt to silence him.

Mike Chaney

TO THE EDITOR: If u fire him i will kick you in the nuts.


TO THE MERCURY: Last week a headline screamed, "Can anyone stop Frank Cassano's 'Imbecile Parade?'" The answer? A resounding NO! In fact, alleged Editor Wm. Steven Humphrey should be expunged from his swanky, corporate CEO corner office so Mr. Cassano can have a comfortable environment in which to lambaste the brutes. We can only hope that Frank happens upon Humphrey's mini-bar or perhaps his secret stash of 100% uncut Colombian cocaine. Can you imagine the ravings of a piss-drunk and coked-out Frank Cassano? Portland would be treated to some fine journalism indeed.

So the ultimate question put before the Mercury readership is this: "Should Frank Cassano be voted out of the paper?" Again, a big HELL NO. Give Frank a raise. Buy him an overpriced hooker. Do whatever it takes to keep his piercing, heavily magnified eyes staring out at us with contempt in the weeks to come. Shit, the fact that he looks like Sigmund Freud's evil twin is reason enough to keep him on the payroll.

In the ranks of the Mercury writers, there can be only one head-asshole-in-charge. That asshole is most definitely Frank Cassano.


CONGRATULATIONS TO CHRIS for winning the Mercury "Letter of the Week." For his tear-jerking defense of that asshole Frank, Chris will receive two free passes to the Laurelhurst Theater! Want to rant or rave? Send in your letter and you could be our next winner!