Gay is the new retard

While it would be an overstatement to call Billy Manes' recent column about Brokeback Mountain a movie review `Blister, Jan. 12`, I'm glad he didn't like it. I hated it too. But to be fair, I didn't actually see it, I just hate it because of what it stands for: exploitation. It was the same thing with that Sean Penn disaster I Am Sam and the Disney crapfest Radio. These movies suck because they take whatever group is popular and exploit it for all it's worth. It used to be retards, now it's gays. Actors playing retards dominated the Oscars for a time, now it's time for actors playing gay people to do the same. In Hollywood, gay is the new retard.

I'm tired of hearing about how this movie somehow legitimizes man-on-man romance in the eyes of the public. Bullshit. If Heath Ledger and that sad-eyed bastard from The Day After Tomorrow were actually gay, they wouldn't have blockbuster movie careers. Why? Because at least half the U.S. population wouldn't go see their big-budget action/comedy/dramas because they put cocks in their mouths. I'm not saying it's right, I'm just saying it's the way things are.

Mike Riegel, Sanford

Kids aren't alright

As a happily married, 34-year-old, childfree woman, I just want to thank you for your article `"Down with kids!," Jan. 12`. Perhaps the day will come when the childfree are not regarded as freaks.

Leah Dankerl, Tampa

Making things worse

I thought "Stalemate" `Jan. 19` was fantastic. Here at Rollins, we just took an inter-session service-learning course about homelessness in Central Florida. It's a huge problem, and I'm indignant about a lot of things, including the city's neglect and the moratorium in Parramore.

Something has to be done to make the city officials realize that homelessness isn't something that will just go away on its own. Granted, there will probably always be homeless people, but if you take away affordable housing and restrict relief organizations, replacing them with cops and condos, you are only making the problem worse.

Cherie Ramirez, Orlando


And here again to prove that dire animal-rights issues are Happytown™'s cue for a Bronx cheer is your Jan. 12 "think piece," with requisite nudity.

Accolades for at least putting forth the effort to render us with the full-of-holes, intermittent records of the underachieving USDA. You do realize that all of the scant violations you listed were only there because they involve the potential imperilment of humans, don't you?

If `People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals` isn't exactly your nonprofit of choice, take your choice of any number of other credible groups. They will have enough woeful facts and figures to make any newspaper go stark white all over.

I write partly to say, yes, most advocacy groups should yield to the fact that donning their best bib and tucker might do well to impart their message, whatever that may be. And as I read here, seeing the sparse text squired by the photo of a woman in even sparser "bib and tucker," I wince. Because while it's your fault that Happytown™ never had any interest in actually standing against the omnipresent animal cruelty, it's our fault for not conceding that when we inappropriately unbutton our shirts/flies/lips, our message comes unbuttoned with it.

Make a deal with ya? If we put forth a real effort to increase the message potency of our selfless cause, you'll find something a bit more humorous than animal persecution to make fun of. Something like, let's just say for instance, labradoodles.

Mary Anne Holls, Winter Park

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