We have Spirit (big S)
For thousands of years, every religion has claimed its prophets (“Prophets Rising,” July 6). But these divinely inspired messengers have usually only served to reinforce belief in an outcome dictated by religious dogma. It is interesting that the contemporary prophets from last week’s cover story disdain the messages of psychics as coming from a source other than God, i.e. Satan or demons, while,at the same time acknowledging the psychic gifts their rivals possess. If one had an open mind and could see the common truth in all religious and spiritual thought (as Professor Gay says, “...love, forgiveness, charity and hope”), one could understand that every person has the ability to communicate directly with Spirit. The truth is the same. Only the methods of revealing it differ. But if a so-called prophet has an established belief or an interest in revealing a certain message—whether it’s that the end days has arrived, plural marriage is God’s will, or Jews and Christians are devils and those who eliminate them will be rewarded in Heaven—then I submit that these prophets are not inspired by God. This new prophetic movement seems to be more about people who have a desire to perform and achieve personal stardom. They have found a hungry audience that longs to have its belief system reinforced by someone who claims a direct line to divine truth. If the members of this audience tuned in to Spirit and did their own personal listening, I wouldn’t be surprised if the truth they heard was a very different one from the shrill caterwauling of Sandy Powell and Jim Goll.
RAND BISHOP email@example.com (Nashville)
The article “Prophets Rising” (July 6), about those claiming to have a prophetic gift, was very informative. Yes, there are many sincere believers who are seeking some sort of experience and are swelling the ranks of those who say that they are gifted with the Spirit. The Bible is clear that we should “despise not prophesying.” “Prove all things; hold fast that which is good”(I Thessalonians 5:20, 21). But “beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God, because many false prophets are gone out into the world” (I John 4:1). The true prophet will speak according to the Bible, which has prophesied that in the last days unclean spirits like frogs, which are spirits of the devil’s will, work miracles to deceive the whole earth (Revelation 16:13, 14). How do frogs catch their prey? The one meeting of this group that I attended was an appeal to feelings and emotions, and mostly void of a clear “thus saith the Lord.”
JACK D. WALKER firstname.lastname@example.org (Antioch)
Free at last
Regarding “Tennessee: Where Public Green Space Is Free Again” (July 6), it is not free: all taxpayers pay for the parks, but many taxpayers never use the parks. What was wrong with those that can and do use the parks paying a little extra on the bill? It was not a great expense, and was most likely the cheapest expense of the day: think transportation, gas, smokes, beers, food and whatever else. It was still a great deal for 3 bucks.
NAIF SALLOUM email@example.com (Franklin)
Thanks to Liz for the good news about the fees being dropped at the parks we’ve all paid for with our monster sales tax (“Tennessee: Where Public Green Space is Free Again,” July 6). I’m sure it couldn’t have had anything to do with the fact that it is an election year for our troubled governor. Folks without health care might think otherwise.
But I doubt John Hancock or any of the other founding fathers would be too happy that we haven’t upended a government that has indeed become “destructive to these ends”—safety and happiness for the working majority. James Madison, just two years after the government was formed, declared it a failure because the few had gained control, and the big banks still control it today. We have our work cut out for us if we are to make our Declaration of Independence a reality.
HOWARD SWITZER firstname.lastname@example.org (Linden, Tenn.)
Walking the plank
Kudos for a dead-on review of the new Pirates of the Caribbean
movie (“Fool’s Gold,” July 6). As a huge fan of the first, I was very disappointed by the sequel. It was confusing and choppy, and even Jack Sparrow seemed a bit too contrived at times. Truly the letdown of my summer. Thanks again, Nashville Scene,
for giving it to us straight.
DEBORAH HARP COLE email@example.com (Bowling Green, Ky.)
Sarah Kelly’s article clearly illustrated that the “police sweep” was a pointless exercise, which solved nothing and wasted valuable resources (“Law Enforcement, Outreach or Publicity Stunt?” Online Exclusive, July 6). I’m certain the guys peddling drugs elsewhere were happy they weren’t being asked to “move along.”
BOB METZGER BMet5353@aol.com (Louisville, Ky.)
Don’t be cruel
Loved your article “Taylor-Made Success” (June 1). I laughed so hard. I thought I was the only one who believed Taylor was having epileptic fits on stage! The poor boy just cannot sing, and I am still in shock that feeble Americans voted him Idol over the likes of Chris Daughtry. I told my friend that I never thought I would ever say that Daughtry sang “Suspicious Minds” as well, if not better, than Elvis.
MARY GARATI firstname.lastname@example.org (Mechanicsville, Va.)
Last week’s piece, “Every Picture Tells a Story” contained an embarrassing error. Jack Ruby did not shoot James Earl Ray, of course. Ruby shot Lee Harvey Oswald. Heads held in shame….