Letters to the Editor

Week of Wednesday, October 4, 2006

Better Haight Than Never

Extreme measures: I read Eliza Strickland's article "Whose Haight?" [Sept. 20] and my heart went out to those poor street kids who were forced to overhear Opera in the Park. I attended that event and noticed that the usual ragtag street vagrants were forced off Hippie Hill/Sharon Meadow and had to sit in the fringe areas. Poor babies. Well, it's only one day per year. Your description of the young man "Lilac" started me on a daydream of what we residents could do about people like him. First of all, if a person refuses to give the police their real name, that should be against the law. He should have been arrested, and made to scrape gum off the sidewalk for four hours while listening to Wagner's "Flight of the Valkyrie" [sic]. Also, let's do away with the Haight Street Fair. This event has always been the calling card for bus people and drifters from all over the country. Unfortunately, these kids come early and leave late — like September — for the first-week-in-June, one-day fair.

I would love to hire one of those fire-fighting helicopters and have it dump water on the fair. That might put a damper on things. As for the kids sitting around in front of stores, I fantasize that I could walk around with a water tank strapped to my back and a hose so that I could hose them down and just say I was cleaning the sidewalk and they were in the way.

Actually, I avoid Haight Street except for Amoeba Records, Cha Cha Cha, and the bookstore. I used to spend Saturday afternoon shopping from one end to the other. Now, it's pretty creepy. I raised two sons in the neighborhood. One is a rock musician and the other a filmmaker. Even they think Haight is to be avoided because it's "dirty, smelly, and full of bums. Who needs that?" they say.

Carole Glosenger San Francisco

Homelessness is the new black: The article on the Haight Street homeless kids was an honest presentation of opposing interests involved in either helping or ignoring the problems of the Haight Ashbury district. There is a simple solution to this problem. These young homeless kids must return to the fashion consciousness of their '60s forefathers. Drab black sweatshirts just rub people the wrong way. If they simply embraced the forgotten fashion of big collars, bright colors, and cool beads, they would find that people would really learn to "dig" on them for just who they are regardless of their destructive lifestyle.

Joseph Theriault

San Francisco

Shot Through the Heart

Don't kowtow to rods with guns: Wow, I guess I sure contacted the wrong reporter to help in my quest to bring peace to Lake Merced ["Hot Shots," Sept. 20]!

I cannot believe how Frances Reade kowtowed to those gun-lovers. How can you possibly keep good relations with your neighbors if thousands of your neighbors are bothered by extreme noise pollution 18 hours per week?! Although it's west of Twin Peaks and near the ocean, even this part of San Francisco is very densely populated. In the Villas at Park Merced apartment complex alone, there are more than 7,000 people. Every shotgun blast is heard by more than 20,000 people. That's good relations with neighbors? What could be worse? Your article is similar to those I've read in Texas, Ohio, and other backward places. SF Weekly is supposed to be an alternative paper?

Since Frances is unbothered by the fact that people in San Francisco are allowed to fire shotguns for "just 18 hours a week," does that mean I can light firecrackers outside her bedroom or office for "just 18 hours a week"? Imagine a sport wherein every second you do that sport thousands of people are forced to know that you're doing it. That's what Ms. Reade considers "good community relations"? She taught me a good lesson: Calling a reporter for help doesn't guarantee that the reporter won't instead try to make a fool out of you.

Shotguns should be fired in rural areas, not in densely populated cities. The San Francisco Recreation and Park Department and Commission need to close the Pacific Rod and Gun Club now.

Scott Rick

San Francisco

Love thy gun-toting neighbor: I think the Pacific Rod and Gun Club is not only a beautiful link to San Francisco's past, but a vital member of the current San Francisco community. Every time I've stopped by people were friendly and helpful.

Eighteen hours of noise a week is not much to put up with for living in such a beautiful part of the city, and let's be honest — the club was here first.

A little tolerence would go a long way.

Noemi Margaret

San Francisco

Whistlin' Fixie

Go, Ephraim:Just read Ephraim the Track Bike's new article ["Ask a Track Bike!," Sept. 27], and while the previous ones were bad enough already, this one is certainly the worst. It is not funny and not original, just like the other ones, but the worst part is that you are calling out people by name in this article (Jenny Oh), trying to publicly ridicule them. How lame is that? Why do you do this? About time you do your part to make this city suckafree: Move out of S.F.

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