Love-Hate Mail 

In tents and purposes
My anger after reading Brantley Hargrove's article on Tent City ("Tent City, Tennessee," Sept. 25) stems from the fact that this bad piece of fiction was written about people I know far better than he ever will.

I have been going down to Tent City for about six years now. My group, Southern Alliance for Animal Welfare, helps with the pets living in this neighborhood. We offer to spay/neuter, vaccinate and provide leashes, flea treatment and pet food. During the winter months, I've also provided propane heaters so that all—the people and their pets—stay warm.

In doing so, I know that this neighborhood is far from ideal. But I have seen more good than bad and a spirit that says, "In spite of it all, I will survive." Never have I been afraid of going down there by myself, although I have seen individuals living there that didn't represent the core group who call this small piece of land home. This ridiculous article doesn't portray Tent City. And while I wish that Mr. Hargrove had the decency to apologize for the damage and lies, I won't hold my breath.

Laurie Green
Nashville

Rainbow connection
Just picked up your Sept. 4 issue and was appalled by some of your Love/Hate Mail writers. Do they really want to go back to the segregated way of the Old South?

One of the problems of the South is that it is 25 years behind the times. The best solution to the problem would be if everything is equal—including funding for the school system as well as hiring good teachers for each and every school.

Regarding the letter by David C.: Relating African Americans to the ghetto is blatant racism. David, you better wake up and smell the coffee. This entire country has ancestors who came here from somewhere else. That is exactly why our country is so wonderful. It's called diversity! Resegregating the school system is the worst alternative.

Mary Beaulieu

A taxing effort
I'm not going to defend our regressive tax system, our low-bar educational results when compared with most other states, etc. ("Why Bredesen's Poll Numbers Are High," Nashvillescene.com.)The sad fact is we have, to borrow from Walt Kelly's Pogo, met the enemy, and he is us.

With each sales tax collection that's fallen behind projections, he's had to cut services, not add or strengthen them. Bredesen has given Tennesseans what they want, and that is of course why he won every county in the state when he was reelected against token opposition. I wish it was different, but my complaint isn't with Bredesen; it's with my fellow Tennesseans. Government doesn't solve every problem, but we've gone too far the other way.

Bobby Blevins

Border call-out
Memo to P.J. Tobia, who is obviously living in another world: All illegals, upon entering this country, automatically commit two felonies: 1. Purchasing bogus ID and 2. using that bogus (or stolen) ID to get a job. Both actions are felonies ("287g Helpless Against Undocumented Murderer," nashvillescene.com).

Does Tobia want to run that nonsense about "law-abiding" by us again? And where is the compassion for the city's unemployed who would gladly do the jobs that have been stolen by illegals, whose presence does nothing but drive down wages?

Dave Gorak
Midwest Coalition to Reduce Immigration
LaValle, Wis.

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