Shame on the Pitch! The teacher in the cartoon looks like the slave master overlooking the slaves working in the fields. The child has a look on his face as if he is clueless, afraid, and is about to be beat down! I think your magazine should issue a public apology for this insensitive, demeaning and outrageous cartoon. The only message that can be derived from the cartoon is that you think African-American students are stupid and ignorant. For the record, I totally disagree with the Pitch.
The article, "Swimming With Sharky" by Bryan Noonan, was insightful and thought-provoking. I met Mr. Noonan, and he denied having anything to do with the cartoon. Actually, he seemed embarrassed by it. You made a mockery of the article by attaching a racist cartoon to it!
Again, I am thoroughly offended by your cartoon and hope that whoever did it will take a class in race relations and diversity before he or she does another one!
Melba J. Curls, State Representative, District 41
Jefferson City, Missouri
Editor's note: The illustration Rep. Curls finds so offensive was a literal representation of the story she so admires -- a story that detailed teachers' frustrations over how a Kansas City School District reform curriculum forced them to treat their students like dummies. Unlike the school district, however, the Pitch was not inclined to water down its content -- or its cover -- for the benefit of those who might not understand without further reading.
From Here to Eternity
Well, hell: I didn't read C.J. Janovy's article "Open Wide!" (February 10) because I rarely read the Pitch unless it's in my face, but I happened to see the letters to the editor concerning it in your March 3 issue. I gather that Janovy's article attacked the Rev. Jerry Johnston for condemning the society-destroying foolishness of "same-sex marriage" and the indoctrination of students in our public, tax-supported schools with the perversity-driven lies of the "gay-rights movement."
As always, right-wing Christians are right on in their condemnation of sexual immorality and perversions. But what I've discovered in my research on the teachings of the different Christian denominations is that the majority of right-wing, fundamentalist, evangelical churches, as well as many mainstream churches, teach (unbelievably) that God is infinitely evil. God who endowed us with intelligence, the facility for reasoning and free wills [in these churches] does not grant us a free-will choice -- or any kind of actual "choice," for that matter -- concerning the acceptance of his authority or eternal life. This satanic teaching not only destroys the credibility of God and Christianity but also transforms our creator into a grinning, splay-toothed psychopath and drags into serious doubt and dispute everything Christianity teaches. From whence do these "Christians" get the audacity to condemn "immorality" when they worship a god who is infinitely immoral, a god whose proclivities for evil -- abuse of power, injustice, cruelty and sadism -- far exceed those of Nero, Hitler and all the demoniacs of history combined?
I am a Bible-believing Christian, not an atheist.
Blue note: I was intrigued by the opening paragraph of Charles Ferruzza's review of the Blue Agave restaurant in Parkville (" Agave Blues," February 10). Many years ago, I, too, waited tables and experienced the same nightmare as Mr. Ferruzza (except for the naked part). So, from his opening statement, I expected to read about his thoroughly horrendous experiences with the service. But when I came to the end of his review, I thought his reference to "petty irritations" seemed appropriate. What a petty review!
Yes, it is irritating when the dinners come out at different times -- but was that the kitchen's fault or the server's? The "perky young Anglo" server "drags" the bartender out to discuss the tequila selections. Was the bartender in cuffs? Some people would have appreciated the extra attention. And please, four plates and a saucer do not add up to a nightmare. Also, is perky a bad trait? Does he prefer sullen? Would he rather feel as if he were in Paris, not little ol' Parkville?
Oh, well, maybe I am just disappointed. It wasn't much of a nightmare -- no real chaos or nakedness. In fact, it was difficult to take this snobbish hyperbole seriously. This wasn't so much a review about the food or even the service as it was about the reviewer's failed attempt to draw an analogy between his "nightmare" and his experiences at the Blue Agave Restaurant.
Nancy Kraus Womack
Kansas City, Missouri
Choice cuts: I often look at the Pitch's Critics' Choices picks for bands and come away only feeling confused. The Kings of Convenience blurb is a good example (March 10). What is the goal of this? If the critic doesn't like the band, why is it a critic's choice? If the critic is just trying to be clever and cute, well, that is what blogs are for.
If someone reading the Pitch is not familiar with a band and is interested in trying something new, this kind of highlight is not helpful. I wish this publication would make a more serious effort to promote some of the excellent music events happening in the Kansas City area instead of making commentary that isn't illustrative or interesting.
Kansas City, Missouri