PW readers sound off.
Regarding Jonathan Valania’s recent cover story about a murder mystery on the Main Line:
Thank you for covering the discovery of the 19th century mass grave of (likely murdered) Irish immigrants in Malvern. It is an era of history we should not forget that has strong parallels to our current xenophobic political climate, which is precisely why I’m baffled as to why you wasted so much space in the article talking about such pseudoscientific crap as “eerie phosphorescent orbs” and electromagnetic field meters that supposedly detect ghosts. With barely a mention of the obvious similarities to the plight of today’s Mexican immigrants and no mention at all of the Irish resistance to such treatment in subsequent years (the Molly Maguires were active less than 100 miles away), I don’t see how you can justify the fluff.
TIMOTHY McMAHON via email
Regarding Aaron Kase’s interview with the New Black Panthers:
It may be that no voters were intimidated, but the witness’ change of testimony suggests that he was. And the group’s cultish behavior hints that ego destruction may await those who join. Meanwhile, their racial essentialism has nothing in common with the class analysis of the original Panthers, who preached community self-defense, not extermination.
ERIC HAMELL via email
This group—by being so outlandish actually plays into the hands of the ultra-right in their desire to stir up nutty fears, hatreds and xeno and other phobias. Let’s cut the crap and realize we all have more in common with each other, and will get somewhere by working together. I highly doubt that the likes of King Shabazz have much of any hearing in the black community. As a white person who works in North and West Philadelphia, I can honestly say that I have never experienced a shred of hostility. United we stand.
KATHY via philadelphiaweekly.com
Regarding last week’s Lush Life:
I am a lawyer in Philadelphia, involved with the Project Dawn court. I write on my own behalf, as a private citizen and reader. I have been reading the free weeklies in Philadelphia for many years, growing up here and I have greatly appreciated the diversity of stories provided by the alt-weeklies.
Your cover story last week was great. Your reporter, Tara Murtha, did an excellent job on the article, depicting the struggles these women face daily and the bleak world of human trafficking. You can imagine then that I was horrified to read today’s Lush Life article in which your reporter, Nile Parish, presents a jovial first person account of getting a handjob from a seedy parlor in Chinatown. It is so very sad that the same newspaper which published an important article shedding light on prostitution would then turn around and publish such an offensive, insulting piece without even a mention about the statistical probability that the women working in the establishments Mr. Parish so happily visited were probably victims of human trafficking.
I can only suggest you seriously consider your employment of Mr. Parish and whatever editor thought it was a newsworthy article.
MIRA BAYLSON via email
I bear no criticism on individuals who have chosen—or more often—have been forced into a life of prostitution. I do however, hold great disgust in your choice to run Nile Parish’s article on paying money for sex in Chinatown.
Instead of writing an informed and ethical article on the circumstances of the women they paid for sex or the serious problem we have in Philadelphia of rampant elicit massage shops, you chose to run this ignorant piece. Instead of exposing the truth of sex trafficking, you chose the easier and more sensational route to attract readers but you’ve now lost at least one.
LORE ELISABETH via email
Letters to the Editor