Letters: Island Life

May 2, 2004
Outside Magazine
Outside magazine, May 1997

Letters: Island Life

Tad Friend's article "Lost at Sea" (March) speaks the truth about a would-be paradise. The Marshall Islands could attract tourists, but first the islanders need to be freed from the intoxicating effect of Uncle Sam.

Jeff Lasher
Yorba Linda, California

The December 1994 proposal by Pan Pacific to use Bikini Atoll islands to store surplus weapons plutonium and spent nuclear fuel was the ultimate slap in the face to Bikinians. Pan Pacific should be ashamed to offer such a proposal, and the Bikini officials should be similarly ashamed for trying to sell their people like lab animals.

Catherine Anne Galvin
Dumont, New Jersey

Friend says that the U.S. army has restricted journalists from entering its base at Kwajalein only since the release of my documentary Home on the Range. Yet I too was denied entrance at first. When I returned with my film crew, the Army relented, knowing that arresting me would have brought even more attention to their despicable treatment of the Marshallese.

Adam J. Horowitz
Santa Fe, New Mexico

Survival Tactics
As a banker who commutes by bike 17 miles each day from Manhattan's Upper West Side to Wall Street, I eagerly turned to "Surviving the Mean Streets" (March). Boy, was I disappointed. Biking down steps? Gimme a break! In my experience, taking the road less trafficked is the best choice a biker can make.

Rebekah Creshkoff
New York, New York

I was rather depressed to find out that I've been surviving the mean streets for the past 25 years all wrong. I used to think there was no substitute for crisp, clear DMV hand signals. I guess I'll get out there and start staring into people's eyes and pointing my way around corners. You'll know me when you see me — I'll be the one in the back of an ambulance.

William Thompson
Exeter, New Hampshire

Another Lap Around the Track
While gymnastics, cycling, and swimming have elaborate support systems to sustain their elite athletes, middle-distance runners and marathoners have fallen by the wayside ("Hey, America, Remember Us?" Dispatches, March). It seems USA Track & Field burned to the ground while Ollan Cassell fiddled from the sidelines. With Cassell gone, maybe USATF will elect a president that has stepped out of his ivory tower long enough to see what fuels the sport today.

John Finger
Lancaster, Pennsylvania

Hate the sin, love the sinner. like a lovable child who has busted up the house, John Brant has done a terrible injustice to USATF. Admittedly, the sport is in a state of transition, but Brant's misstatements do little to shed light on the root causes. For example, Brant writes, "Now, with only a tenuous arrangement with Nike left to fill the coffers, USATF has been forced to cut more than $2 million from its 1997 budget." A ten-year signed deal with Nike and a cut of $1.5 million are the facts we have at hand. Outside's track and field coverage in the past has been much appreciated. Keep up the good work, but please be more careful in checking your facts.

Pete Cava
USA Track & Field
Indianapolis, Indiana

John Brant replies: Pete Cava's corrections are welcome but do nothing to change the main point of my article — that track and field is reeling in America. If, as Cava charges, a "terrible injustice" has been committed, it is not that a $2 million budget cut was accurately reported when later figures show the cut to be $1.5 million, but that after an Olympic year in which the United States hosted the Games and posted so many superlative track and field performances, USATF proposes such a cut at all.

We welcome your comments. Address correspondence to the Letters Editor, Outside, 400 Market St., Santa Fe, NM 87501, or send E-mail ([email protected]). Please include your full name and address. Letters may be edited for clarity and space.

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