December 2011 Letters

HALLOWEEN SHOOTINGS

This is in response to Jan Ramsey’s blog post “Rotten, Really Rotten Apples” commenting on the Halloween shootings by suggesting to set up random checkpoints in the French Quarter and high crime areas at night.—Ed.

Unfortunately it really isn’t just New Orleans. Here in Memphis—where the Beale Street district is much smaller—the police and private security restrict entrance to the street. The police enforce a “no cruising” zone by blocking off streets, and still, albeit on a smaller scale, a similar incident (multiple shooting) occurred just a couple of weeks ago down at what locals call the “bad” end of Beale, with police nearby. You have to change the culture, and not just in New Orleans. Best of luck, as a “yat ex-pat” I hate to see the type of horrible publicity this event brings. Hopefully the new leadership in New Orleans will deal with this.

—Gene Nunez, Memphis, TN

KNOWING THE DIFFERENCE

I enjoy each and every OffBeat issue received in my hometown 1,100 miles north of the City of Dreams. However, the lead article in the CD review section of the October issue started on a bad footing. Roger Hahn refers to the great Chief Donald Harrison, jazz idol and cultural icon as a tenor saxophonist in the first sentence, then again later in the review.

Harrison is a preeminent alto sax player, one of our best, and has only on rare occasions played tenor. Did the reviewer know the difference? The coverage of jazz in OffBeat and elsewhere seems to be slipping, and a little accuracy would go a long way toward correcting the deficiency.

—Les Hoffman, Madison, Wisconsin

Roger Hahn responds: The writer is profoundly sorry about the error—just a mental “slip of the tongue” writing on deadline. It’s been corrected online and will forevermore remain corrected in the embarrassed writer’s brain.

MIND IN NEW ORLEANS

Each month when OffBeat Magazine arrives, my wife is sure to place it in my hands and comment: “I’ll see you in a few hours because I know your mind will only be in New Orleans until you’ve gone from cover to cover.”

—Henry Walston, Wilson, NC