TO THE MERCURY VIA VOICEMAIL—All right, so I don't know where you found this "Jason Tanz," but his interview in last week's Mercury was so blatantly ignorant I thought it was a joke ["Don't Call Me Wigger, Whitey," Feature, Feb 15]. "Wiggers" and "Wegroes" equals "white niggers" and "white negroes." I mean, how is that anything but racist? Everything discussed was inaccurate and really does a disservice to hiphop, the community, and the City of Portland. Everyone involved should be ashamed.



TO THE MERCURY—In the February 15 article "Don't Call Me Wigger, Whitey," on hiphop and crossover audiences, I wonder at author Chas Bowie's use of the word "ape" in his description of a white youngster mimicking his across-the-street black neighbor's fashion and speech, also a youngster. He hopes that this "is essentially making these kids color blind..." but he also worries about blacks feeling their culture is being "assimilated." (Stolen?) Well, the use of the word "ape" shows that Bowie has a long way to go in being culturally sensitive. Or was that just an unconscious slip of the tongue, like Joe Biden's describing Barack Obama as "clean"? Both examples, in my opinion, of white supremacy and unconscious racism.

Linda Kanzinger


DEAR SIR/MADAM—I regret to inform you that your restaurant reviewer is an incompetent moron. She recently reviewed a new restaurant in NoPo, namely Pause Kitchen and Bar ["Pause and Smell the Meatloaf," Last Supper, Feb 8]. Embarrassingly, she felt the need to point out that: "The cassoulet... [was] topped somewhat inexplicably with bread crumbs (they got soggy, fast, and contributed nothing to the dish except making it harder to eat)." Clearly the woman is an idiot. Cassoulet is a French dish that is TRADITIONALLY TOPPED WITH BREAD CRUMBS. Indeed, it would be a glaring oversight on the part of the chef to omit said bread crumbs. Why, oh why, must the food-wise continue to suffer under the tyranny of the ignorant restaurant critic? Please, put a stop to this madness.

A Concerned Citizen


HI MERCURY—I'm so happy you got rid of that stoopid comic! You might as well be running crap by Callahan in your paper as the never-funny Blecky Yuk-o. Maakies and Perry Bible Fellowship are keepers; Dinosaur Comics looks promising... Now how about replacing the embarrassingly terrible Underworld with that new Jamie Foxx feature [New Column, Feb 22] and your comics page will be closer to the high standards(?!) that you set for the rest of the paper.

Lou Valkenaar


DEAR MERCURY—Scott Moore's column covering the proposed Portland anti-sweatshop law is right to condemn the city council's slowness to act ["Sweat Stains," Hall Monitor, Feb 22]. However, many of us have been working on getting the city to pass the sweat-free law since 2005, when Progressive Student Union held our Conference on Human Rights and Labor Rights at Portland State. We have also brought three speakers from Colombia to PSU from SINALTRAINAL, the food and beverage worker union, to speak on behalf of the Coke-Odwalla boycott.  Both Los Angeles and San Francisco, as cities, have passed sweat-free ordinances, with $100,000 in funding. Many of us would like to see Portland pass the same law, fund it, and put some teeth into it by including food multinationals as well as clothing corporations.

 Lew Church

CONGRATULATIONS TO LEW for that laundry list of accomplishments, and for winning the Mercury Letter of the Week! All that activism must make you famished Lew, so we're giving you lunch for two at No Fish! Go Fish! (guess you won't be ordering a Coke, heh-heh), and two tickets to the Laurelhurst Theater.


A minor mistake which could yield major consequences was made in last week's feature, "Look Good, Feel Good" [Feb 22] in which we stated that Bishops Barbershop's "Charity Day" is being held on March 12. IT'S NOT MARCH 12, IT'S MARCH 13! Be sure to drop into one of their salons on TUESDAY, MARCH 13 when hair styling proceeds will go to awesome nonprofit Artists for the Arts.