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Letters to the Editor

Days of Eeyore

In response to Robert Ward's letter in the March 29 issue: Well, my family got a big kick out of that load of hopeless ill-humor he delivered! We're pretty sure he is Eeyore. I have a feeling he wouldn't be happy anywhere, but here's a bold suggestion: Mr. Ward, why don't you go live somewhere else? Whoa! What a great idea! I think you would be so surprised at what you find.

The two branches of my family recently moved here, one branch from the Palm Beach, Fla., area, and one from the New York City/ Philadelphia area....and we all have traveled a good bit and lived in an assortment of places.....and we just can't figure out why Mr. Ward thinks Knoxville is such a cultural wasteland, a nothing-to-do "lackluster" town! Knoxville and the entire East Tennessee region are bursting with events and activities, beauty and adventure!

I moved here from Princeton, N.J.; yes, home of Princeton University—45 minutes from New York City, 45 minutes from Philadelphia, 60 minutes from the Atlantic Ocean, a half-hour from the Delaware River, the mountains—a virtual hotbed of culture, activity and people who are "somebody." It was interesting, beautiful and full of great things to see and do! A fine place to live, indeed! How on earth could we stand to live near a "Godforsaken" town like Knoxville? Easy! Some East Tennessee natives may not be thrilled to see "transplants" like us here, but at least we like it here. Mr. Ward might be the perfect example of "wherever you go, there you are."

My family (not a dull redneck in the bunch, Robert!) moved here on purpose. We have loved this area since our first visit in the '60s, and when our dreams of being able to move here came true, we didn't waste a minute! I wouldn't ordinarily respond to a letter to the editor, but I just had to say..... Knoxville—cool place. Metro Pulse—cool paper. Me—cool person who likes it here! (and I've had ample opportunity to compare)

Kathy Huber

Think Smaller

I've been following your articles very loosely on government issues for several years. Issues such as downtown renovation, empowerment zones, taxes, Tenncare, etc.

While I think the articles are somewhat objective, they always seem to leave out a certain viewpoint. That being a free market stance or a smaller government stance. Not one of the articles has mentioned the fact that the government has no business interfering in business in the first place.

It seems these days that it is accepted as a rule that government in its many forms has to do things or they won't get done. Has anyone in the county or city thought of lowering taxes and bringing in more businesses. Businesses that will employ workers and bring money into the local economy.

Knoxville has so many things going for it, the fact that it isn't a flourishing metropolis is due mainly to poor government, plain and simple. They should concentrate on better roads and better protection for the citizens who already live here before spending hundreds of millions on an unproven downtown revitalization scheme.

I am completely convinced that if Knoxville made the environment more attractive for businesses (mainly on taxes) more would stay/move here. When I say stay does anyone remember when the city scared off Phillips Magnavox because they doubled the property taxes?

Cities like Atlanta and Nashville are giving companies incentives to move there, while Knoxville is raising taxes and forcing companies to move. If you people really want a nice city, start writing articles convincing the public and the politicians to start building up infrastructure and giving incentives to businesses. Otherwise, every time someone moves here someone else is going to leave, just like now.

Erik G. Hamm

Get Down, Get Down
We here at Metro Pulse would like to say some big thank yous to the various people who made our annual Best of Knoxville party such a blast last Thursday. Thanks to the restaurants who donated food (too numerous to list, but you know who you are); to the Humane Society of the Tennessee Valley for co-sponsoring; to the marvelously helpful Special Events crew at the city of Knoxville, who helped us close the street, set up, and tear down; to Ashley Capps and A.C. Entertainment, for allowing us to team up with a spectacular Sundown in the City concert; to Hallerin Hill for serving as our awards emcee; and most of all, to the throngs of people (3,000 or so by official count) who came out for a lovely evening on the town. We hope you had as much fun as we did—except without the hangovers...
See ya next year!
—The Editors

Prize Monkeys
Some Metro Pulse writers got nods (and winks and nudges, too) for their efforts at the annual East Tennessee Society of Professional Journalist awards last Friday. Top of the heap was Mike Gibson, who won first place for feature writing with his story "Blue vs. White," which recounted the ugly and fascinating Sevier County tale of the White Caps and Blue Bills. And three of our Movie Gurus—Jesse Fox Mayshark, Coury Turczyn and Zak Weisfeld—made a sweep of the reviews and criticism category, finishing first, second and third respectively. Matthew T. Everett received third place in general news reporting for his story "Up In Smoke," which chronicled the collapse of Jerry Upton's Inner City investment bank. And Rick Baldwin won an Award of Merit for illustration, followed by an honorable mention for freelance artist Michael Longstaff (both for cover illustrations). Finally, photographer Jack Rose won an honorable mention in feature photography for his photos of tobacco farmers in East Tennessee. Congratulations all around.