Letter to the Editor

Nuclear Reactions

Gutsy: Congratulations on a well-written and informative piece ["Bring It On," by Josh Harkinson, March 9]. You managed to effectively challenge one of the big orthodoxies with facts. The status quo on energy will not change until we accept the fact that nuclear energy is clean and effective. We must bring it back, and we must not let those who so irrationally hate it control the agenda for its development. No other feasible energy source is as clean or as cost- effective as nuclear energy. Thank you, Houston Press, for having the guts to publish this article in your market.

Name withheld by request
Houston

Listen to the radioactivity: Well, I see that it has started. The pro-nuke crowd is trying to tell the public that, no, really, we may need nuclear power to save our asses from rising gas prices and global warming. Thanks to Josh Harkinson for this heads up. I thought we had driven a stake through the heart of nuclear-plant proliferation. I should state that I was an intervener against Allens Creek in Wallis, Texas (near where I live in Spring Branch). I also was a member of Mockingbird Alliance, an anti-nuke group.

The premise of the article that nuclear power is safe, clean energy is a lie. What pro-nuclear people don't say is that because of the fission process, any nuclear plant has to emit hundreds of thousands of curies of radiation each year, or bust the containment vessel holding the core. The radiation released leads to an increase in cancer in the area surrounding the plant, especially among women and children. And, of course, there's the nuclear waste, which stays radioactive for millions of years. And accidents. People, remember Chernobyl and Three Mile Island? How about Windscale? SL-1? Browns Ferry? Enrico Fermi, which is the accident referred to in the title of John Fuller's book We Almost Lost Detroit? Plus, the fact that when you get down to it, most nuclear plants run by splitting the atom so they can use the heat to make steam to turn an electric generator. When you really think about it, nuclear power is a Rube Goldberg device.

Rick Potthoff
Houston

Yes nukes: Your article is thoughtful, well written and excellent. Tom "Smitty" Smith is a cherished friend from the South Texas Nuclear Project battle so long ago. I loved your description of him...he's definitely one of the good guys. I don't know any rational person who suggests that coal is preferable to nuclear energy. I remember a person I regarded as intelligent and responsible during the STNP battle saying that if HL&P would just buy all its rate-payers a new energy-efficient refrigerator, that would save more energy than STNP would produce. I think that's the kind of thinking we need to start with. Your writing has impressed me so, I am going to resume reading the Press. Thank you.

Eleanor Culberson
Houston

Doing it better: I like your article about nuclear reactors and how they'll probably be a reality. I, like many, think we need them, but also hope like hell we have a better handle on them, better than we had 20 or 30 years ago. Not that I think we should act like them, but the French have been mostly nuclear for 15 years or so. Hell, if they can do it, we can do it better! I would love to see a follow-up article, maybe find out what the big dogs have up their sleeve that makes them so confident we won't glow in the dark.

Bill Esposito
Lucas, Texas

The Reverend

Cheap shot: The Reverend Sun Myung Moon does not lead a "cult" in the modern-day, derogatory sense of the word ["Moon Swoon," Hair Balls, by Richard Connelly, March 9]. You are just out of date or nasty.

I like wordplay, but "Moon Swoon" is a pretty cheap shot, as is taking the Reverend Moon's statements out of context and shooting them at the good reverend without, it seems, any real interest in his response unless you could get him to say something stupid.

It's articles like this that bring what could and should be an honorable profession into disrepute.

Christopher Davies
Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Defending DJ AM

Top-notch: I just read the Nightfly column ["Hollywood in Houston?" by Travis Ritter, March 2] and I'm so sorry that Travis Ritter didn't have the same experience that most people at the DJ AM show did! My friends and I had a great time at the Celebrity All-Star party, and despite the cold it was worth it to head out there. Not only was DJ AM surprisingly top-notch, but I did see stars Mark Cuban and Mischa Barton (from The O.C. ) at the event. It sucks that you had a bad experience, but even worse that you tried to portray your own Houston Press event that way. I mean, it was free for you! It seemed like everyone else felt like it was worth the cover price. I hope the Houston Press decides to promote more events like this despite what your writer said!

Amy Lee
Houston

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