Mail Call

On the Fence

Defend our borders: Fences work, and they work rather well ["Killing Fences," by Margaret Downing, May 31]. Israel has drastically reduced terrorism by building a fence along its border with the Palestinian Territories. Apparently, not one single terrorist has been able to penetrate the Israeli security fence. Given that suicide bombers are presumably more motivated than illegals, a fence should work even better for protecting our country.

Let me suggest that those opposing the fence may not have the well-being of the American people in mind. Do you really think a bunch of corporate types who criminally profit from exploiting illegal aliens are a credible source of information on this topic?

Yes, the fence will have negative consequences for the environment, depending on exactly where it is built. However, illegal immigration is destroying the environment (human and natural) in much of the United States. For exactly that reason, several environmental organizations strongly support border control.

As for a spiritual crisis, a free nation has the right and the responsibility to defend its borders. Our foremost responsibility is to our own people.

Peter Schaeffer
Houston

Party's over: Homeland Security is so worried about the Mexicans coming over, they are willing to wipe out land that was bought and conserved with U.S. taxpayers' money.

In the meantime, the Asians are sneaking in freely.

It's plain and simple racism. They target brown people coming over the Mexican border.

What about the Canadian border? The Caribbean and Guyana terrorists who were planning to blow up JFK were free to move and plan easily.

I'm so glad this administration is going down the tubes fast. They are like a tornado, taking out land, wildlife and rights.

The party is almost over, and I hope KBR and Halliburton are going down with them.

Melissa G. Pryer
Pearland

Public Access

Free ride: On May 12, more than a quarter of a million people watched 242 mobile works of art motor down Allen Parkway for the 20th Annual Houston Art Car Parade ["Moving Violation," Hair Balls, by Richard Connelly, May 24].

The Orange Show Center for Visionary Art produces the Art Car Parade to fulfill our nonprofit organization's mission to provide opportunities for the expression of personal artistic vision and to create a community where that expression is valued. We are so proud of this, the first, biggest and best Art Car event in the country.

It is expensive to produce large public events; we invest more than $300,000 in cash to stage this free, fun and safe public art event. While some events cover their expenses through high participant fees or public admission fees, we chose a model of funding that keeps the Art Car Parade free to the public. For years, the parade's budget has been funded by corporate sponsorship, foundation grants, individual contributions, concession sales and minimal entry fees. Commercial entries have helped fund the parade for at least 15 years.

The rules for entering the Houston Art Car Parade are simple and designed to accommodate all our Art Car artists — artists, car lovers, mothers, teachers, engineers and, yes, members of corporate America. Safety for audience and artist alike at this event is paramount, and that's why all entries must be registered in advance. If you don't follow the rules, you can't be in the parade, no matter how amazing your Art Car might be.

To those of you who supported this year's parade as well as to those of you who simply enjoyed a day of smiling, happy camaraderie with 250,000 of your neighbors, we want to say thank you. We look forward to having you join us — through attendance, dollar or volunteer support — on Saturday, May 10, 2008, when the Art Car Parade takes to the road once again to celebrate Houston's freedom of expression and the drive to use it.

Marilyn Oshman
Chairman and Founder
Susanne Theis
Executive Director
Jackie Wallace
President
Orange Show Center for Visionary Art
Houston

TRU That

Geez, Sadof: You couldn't end your Kurt Brennan rebuttal without giving the KTRU DJ kiddies one last bashing [Letters, May 31]. "It would be nice if they could write down what they're playing"? There's this invention called the Internet. And on it, them geniuses at KTRU programmed the Web so that as they type in what they are playing, you see it in real time. How cool is that?! Browse at your leisure, dude. You can even go back for weeks. Sometimes I'll hear something in the car, note the time and then check out what it was later online, if I don't hear the DJ fill me in when I'm still hanging around. If I'm dying to know, I call them up at 713-348-5878, and they are always happy to tell me everything I want to know.

As far as them not taking their "opportunity" to "reach a wider audience" by creating the perfect show of your dreams...tough titty! The best thing about this college radio station is that they are beholden to no one (except maybe the FCC). That's the whole beauty and point of their existence, which is a rarity in this corporate lamestream culture. They do not answer to shareholders or need to garner ratings. They are free to do whatever they feel like and I love that about them.

I started listening to KTRU in 1987 and have not listened to any commercial radio since. I listen to them, jump online when I hear something I like, enter that info into eMusic, download and own the song. Sweet.

By the way, they do play every one of the groups you suggested they should add to their core daytime playlist. KTRU, just keep on doing what you're doing. The kids are all right!

Buckdog
HoustonWater Break

School's out for summer, and the absence of pencils, books and teachers' dirty looks means the arrival of the sweltering Houston heat. We're big fans of keeping cool, so the theme for this month's high school photo contest is water. Fresh water, salt water, bath water, fish water — anything that's wet, really. Send all entries to studentphotos@houstonpress.com. Visit blogs.houstonpress.com for more details and to vote on last month's entries

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