DEAR MERCURY—Regarding Matt Davis' recent article "SAFE-ing Grace" [News, Nov 2]: What he fails to infuse into this piece is the total lunacy of Portland's current policy toward the homeless. Clearly the ACLU has been sending bottles of Dom [Mayor] Tom [Potter]'s way. Either that or the people who live in the sea of homeless refuse that is Old Town are so hopeless of their situation that they've given up—or moved to the Pearl. I live in Old Town and it is a pile of filth—I take the train to work so I don't have to walk by the public nuisance that is Skidmore Fountain. The fact that Old Town houses some of the most aesthetically beautiful and historic buildings in town, yet can only support a few bars, clubs, a tie-dye sale (Saturday Market), and a rescue mission speaks directly to the economic impact of liberal sit-lie ordinances. Don't beat around the bush for fear of looking harsh—most of us are tied of people pissing on our doorsteps and rummaging through our trash.

Spencer Bailey


DEAR MERCURY—I'd like to give Claire Robison a smack up side the head with my helmet after reading her reply to the recent I, Anonymous regarding cyclists and helmets [Letters, Nov 9]. She tries to justify her lack of gray matter based on her "research" about the Netherlands. Tell me Claire, did your research also compare the percentage of drivers per capita in America vs. Europe? And your comment saying cyclists are no more likely to suffer a head injury than a pedestrian is equally moronic. Basic physics will tell you that the damage to a cyclist traveling 20 mph that hits a car going 40 mph will be much worse than a ped walking 2 mph. I watched as my best friend had doctors peel his face off, rebuilt his eye socket, screwed three titanium plates into his skull, and put 67 staples from ear to ear after some a-hole made a right turn in front of him without signaling.  I've worn a helmet ever since. There are only two things keeping Claire from wearing a helmet, her vanity and her "educated" stupidity.

Zachary Christensen


DEAR MERCURY—Hey, can you please ask Chas Bowie to try to write better? His review of Babel hurt to read ["Connect the Plots," Film, Nov 9]. The last sentence about "resting on the laurels of a formula" was pure torture (in a bad way) and left a considerable mark... one of the ugliest sentences ever published. Chas seems just intelligent enough to repeatedly get himself into semantic trouble and grammatical disgrace, and, even on those occasions when he makes coherent sentences, utterly lacks originality. Anyway, can you ask him?

Kyle in SE


DEAR MERCURY—I'm picturing Salina Nuñez drowning herself in her rum drink and taking out her anger at her own lack of relevance on the young rapper Lady Sovereign ["London's Burning with Boredom," Music, Nov 9]. Nuñez rants on about the deficiencies of Lady Sovereign while admittedly not having been able to put forth the effort to do a 10-minute interview with her. While Lady Sovereign is perhaps not the most sophisticated of rappers (she never claims to be), she is interesting, innovative, and in many respects groundbreaking. She is one of the few female rappers holding her own in the game that has chosen not to capitalize on her sexuality. Perhaps this is why it is hard for some to take her seriously, because through her playful and adolescently charming rhymes she has embraced her youth and the happiness of being young. For Nuñez, this has somehow made Lady Sovereign less relevant to "the grand scheme of things." Perhaps if Nuñez looked a little closer and actually did her homework, she would see that Lady Sovereign is an impressively motivated and interesting individual who was able to rise up and make something of herself after having been a 15-year-old dropout with no formal education. Lady Sovereign may not be directly addressing the issues of our "world leaders wrestling over nuclear bombs," as Nuñez criticizes, but at least she's not sitting on a barstool expending energy on criticizing others and subjecting the rest of us to the uninformed results. 

 Joy Miele

CONGRATULATIONS TO JOY for standing up in defense of pint-sized young rapper Lady Sovereign, who was more fun than a barrel of monkeys at her Portland show last Sunday. Joy wins two tickets to the Laurelhurst Theater and lunch for two at No Fish! Go Fish!, where you're welcome to sit on a barstool and expend energy.