Illustration by Suzette Smith


RE: A recent package in the mail contained requests from several female inmates that their solicitations for pen pals be printed in the Mercury. We're running one each week until we run out. Please, drop them a line! They're bored!

Hi, my name is Jamie. I am a 31-year-old female, 5'6", 140 pounds, fun, outgoing, good sense of humor with a great smile. Doin' some time and need a good pen pal. Male or female. Please write to: Jamie Malespin, c/o Madison County Jail, 15 N 2nd East, Rexburg, ID 83440


RE: "Checkpoint Clackamas!" [Feature, May 31], regarding a perceived rise in anti-"Portland creep" mentality from Clackamas County.

I love it when people bring up the racial inequity problems and gentrification in Portland, but then recant and claim it's not affecting politics. Crackamus County doesn't want blacks/Latinos, etc., or poor white folks moving in and setting up home next door. When people like that say they like the "peace" and "safety," they mean the segregation. Call it like it is, don't sugarcoat it with some bullshit about stopping crime or infrastructure. We already know you, don't gotta lie.>

-posted by TheOnlySanePersonInTheWorld

Wow, reading the comments here, I wonder why they wouldn't like Portland? On the contrary, they should be inviting you all over to dinner to lecture them on what's wrong with them, and tell them that they're racist. On a serious note, the problem in many suburban communities is actually Metro. It requires buying into a top-down density and transportation framework. People in the suburbs perceive that this framework is Portland-centric, dreamed up and administered by Portland planners, who live and work every day in Central Portland. The suburbanites are basically correct in this assessment.

-posted by Blabby


RE: "Taming the Beast" [News, May 31], regarding the ongoing struggle between organizers of Last Thursday events, the neighborhood, cops, and the city.

The need to fund Last Thursday is always brought up as a reason why the event needs to be changed. Money is not now, and never has been, the real issue, just a red herring the city uses as an excuse to grab control of the event. For over a decade we, the community, funded the event and are happy to continue to do so. Bringing in corporate sponsors and making the vendors pay will change the flavor of Last Thursday and within a year or two it will be just another boring fair like most every other one out there. We are only talking about a lousy five days each year. Why can't they just let us be?

-posted by Magnus Johannesson

Last Thursday needs to grow up. If the Last Thursday group was doing such a great job, the city would not have become involved. The neighbors forced the city to deal with the huge crowds that landlord Johannesson, the bars, the restaurants, and to a lesser extent, retail have benefited from handsomely. Friends of Last Thursday have relied on the city to create jobs for themselves, when they need to get the merchants to pay to continue to nest the goose that laid the golden egg. If you think you can get the same results at lower costs, own it, don't play victim. Which is what the city is saying...

-posted by R


RE: "Eye in the Sky" [News, May 31], regarding the vote to install police surveillance cameras in Old Town/Chinatown and the privacy concerns associated with them.

DEAR MERCURY—In my busy week I would have missed what was going on with the police cameras downtown, but you guys came through again. If it weren't for your news pages, I would know a lot less about the issues I care most about in Portland city politics. The freedom issues: sit-lie, drug-free zones (drug impact areas), prostitution-free zones, civil commitment, malt liquor and big bottle bans, and now, police cameras surveying the city. I just want to thank you for the info.


SURE THING, EVAN, and thanks for paying attention. With all the cops, changing laws, drug and prostitution crackdowns, booze, and now cameras, there is kind of a lot for a busy fellow like you to keep up on. You win two tickets to the Laurelhurst Theater, where you can escape the many troubles of urban life. Now keep an eye out, so you can smile pretty for the police.