The twisted mind of a string-bender: Thomas Francis's cover story ["Lord of the Strings," December 8] is noteworthy for showing Scene's readers the inner workings of a very sick mind.
There might be madness in all genius, but it doesn't mean that we should be applauding it when it breaks into a string-bending riff. Glenn Schwartz is a very confused and dangerous individual, who is in need of psychiatric treatment. That he feels free to call out his audience and wax rhapsodic with all manner of religiously motivated diatribes is disturbing and calls his sanity into question.
No wonder average people believe fundamentalist Christians to be deranged kooks. I hope someone will be able to confront this man and get him the help he so obviously needs.
An axe to grind: Lord of the Crazed? I'm confused. Why the five-page article on Glenn Schwartz? New CD? No. Promote a show? No. What gives? All I got out of this article was just another crazed Jesus freak damning those who don't share his opinions.
Beliefs are founded on one's own experience. We all have our own cross to bear. Granted, he's a guitarist of a certain acclaim, and it's nice to know he's still playing, but there are many talented musicians who could use such exposure. Besides, when I go see live entertainment, I want to dance, be entertained, and socialize, not preached to! Give me a break!
Judge not, lest ye be Schwartz: The woman quoted in "Lord of the Strings" saying that God is about love, not judgment, was absolutely right. Whatever warped deity Glenn Schwartz follows, it is not my God. God does not condemn women for being women, gays for being gay, or any person for being the way they were born. It is disgusting that you would devote so much wasted paper to such a twisted individual and then keep pointing to the fact that he is a wonderful guitarist. Talent does not give a person free rein to be an asshole, and it does not make you a prophet either.
Furthermore, it is disgusting that you would let a blatant homophobe like Mr. Schwartz get such a good reputation through your pages, but would give such repeatedly shoddy treatment to Republicans -- especially Alex Arshinkoff, whom you have blasted numerous times for being a homosexual, when he is no such thing. He does not have sex with young boys.
Stop trying to demonize people who do not share your political values. Savage Love remains hilarious, and thank you for giving such good blurbs about the restaurants of Geauga and Portage Counties.
Quick Fix for Old Problems
Cleveland leaders must work together: "A Century of Bumbling" [November 24], Mike Roberts' great article on the failure of Cleveland, should serve as a wake-up call for the current crop of business and community leaders. Will it? Probably not.
Sorely needed are individuals and groups with the clout, courage, and conviction to pursue challenging short-term objectives that will ultimately deliver big-picture, permanent success.
Among the critical changes needed is thinking on a regional basis. The outmoded "me-first" attitude, typical of the past, must be replaced by a more inclusive regional "we're-all-in-this-together" perspective. Unlike the long, drawn-out decline, so well-described by Roberts, let's hope that things can be turned around reasonably quickly.
Even Cincinnati Gets It
Public fields are for high school football: Just wanted to give you props for your article ["Let There Be Pigskin," December 1] about reviving the old Charity Game. As an Ignatius graduate, I can see this being a huge success. The Bengals' stadium has been put to use a couple of times for high school teams down here. Granted, I hate Cincinnati and every team from here, but it just shows it can work. Nice job on the column.
The Larchmere Model
Business is booming the next block over: I read the well-written and informative article about Shaker Square ["Let Them Eat Cake," December 8]. I have heard a lot of great ideas about the Square and its comeback attempts. I hope it does. However, each time I hear or read about it, I am surprised that no one ever mentions its neighbor one block to the north -- Larchmere Boulevard.
The street has never faltered. In fact, it has grown and expanded tremendously in the past few years. Boulevard Blue is an awesome place to eat and listen to jazz. Blis Wear is a contemporary clothing boutique that sells women's fashions you won't find at the mall. Limbo Café has expanded, with wine and beer and music at night.
There are more than a dozen small businesses that have endured the economy and offer some of the most unique shopping in Cleveland. It's a place full of energy that warrants attention. I was born and raised in Cleveland. I was away for 12 years, teaching college around the country. I am so happy to be home and proud to be a part of this dynamic neighborhood.