Dear Stranger: Prior to reading your Democratic Convention pre-review ["The Surge," Charles Mudede, Aug 28], I hadn't realized this campaign was about all cocks—be they black or white, be they show-me-what-ya-got size or septuageriatric-shriveled size... [But] let's set cocks aside for moment. There's more in this election: Fundamentalist "Christianity" and wars for our "freedom" are some of the biggest marketing frauds perpetrated on humankind over the past 50 years. The Republicans are mindful of the power and the money that the Catholic Church has garnered over the past 500-plus years from their long-enduring marketing efforts. And the Republicans are determined to retain an exclusive franchise on this new Jesus business. That's a big part of the campaign; that's the root of Republican politics.

Now back to cocks: If I can control your cocks and kitties, if I can control you with guilt and shame and the threat of damnation, then I can get you to work a Wal-Mart schedule for minimum wage, get you to surrender health insurance for you and your children, get you to forget about ever retiring, get you to pay me three times as much money for your gas and heating oil, I can even get you to die in the sand for a criminal war to protect our "freedom" and our "Christian" values. I guess yes, maybe this election really is about cocks—it's about regaining control of all our cocks (including choices for gay cocks), more than ever it's about everyone's reproductive rights, it's about getting them out of our bedrooms and altogether out of our personal lives, and it's about regaining control of this country for the reasons it was originally founded. I'm looking forward to yanking hard on that voting lever in November.



To the Stranger, the biggest bullies in town: Hello, all you leaders of the hipster nation! How is it in the capital of cool? It must get exhausting deciding how to insult things relentlessly. I think you do a great job! However, as cultural attachés I believe you end up letting certain art forms fall by the wayside. You and the rest of Seattle are about to bully contemporary dance out of town. As you know, Velocity dance center is losing its home in the Odd Fellows Hall. Your recent comparison of the improv [acornDance] vs. the children in the fountain [Bumbershoot Guide, Aug 28] is exactly the type of mockery that does not help us as a community feel welcome at what is advertised as Seattle's biggest arts festival.

Other newspapers elsewhere, less concerned with being hip, write about dance by describing the artist, their lives, hopes, visions, background (things you write about musicians). Instead you focus on witty digs (how children are less self involved/cuter, or how it would be better to watch if you were drunk). The dance community is represented as naive, self indulgent, and foolish (which is accurate for some but there are many incredible artists in our community). I think you owe us!

So either I call you out for a Stranger vs. Dancers: Modern Dance–Off (the terms and conditions of which have yet to be thought through). Or you do a feature on the kick-ass members of our community: Amy Oneil [O'Neal], Wade Madsen, Left Field Revival, Zoe Schofield, Ricki Mason, Maki Mori [Morinoue]... just to name a few. As our community heads toward an uncertain future of displacement, it would be awesome if you Hipster Dictators of Cool could, for once, be on our side and wake Seattle up to its contemporary dance scene.

A Concerned Fan of the Seattle Art Scene


Dear Stranger Genius Awards Committee: Thank you for the invitation to the 6th(!) Annual Stranger Genius Awards [Moore Theater, Sept 13]. I've had to regrettably decline, but I wanted you to know how truly honored I am to be asked. Although I may have cause on occasion to fault the cynicism of alternative weeklies in general and The Stranger specifically, I have nothing but admiration and respect for your determination to award excellence in the arts with something more manifest than praiseworthy comments or an empty bourgeois fete. Blessings to you all for so tangibly supporting individual artists in Seattle.

Laurence Ballard

DEPT. OF CORRECTIONS: Due to an editing error, an article on King County Initiative 26 called a "she" a "he": Theresa Gillespie, not her husband, has donated exclusively to Republicans in previous partisan races ["Red Carpet" Aug 28]. We are sorting out our gender issues. And in the August 28 Underage column, Casey Catherwood referred to the Josephine as an all-ages music venue; it is, in fact, an art/gallery space that occasionally hosts private parties. We sincerely regret young Catherwood's error.