Letters to the Editor 

Griz vs. Tigers?

Kudos to Chris Herrington for his preseason analysis of this year's Grizzlies ("The X-Factor," November 1st issue). I agree that the Griz can improve this season, especially if they get Kyle Lowry into the game more and get Rudy Gay to play with confidence and abandon.

But here's a problem Herrington didn't address: the competition for fans' loyalty (and dollars) from the nationally ranked Memphis Tigers. While the Griz will be struggling to regain a competitive status in the Western Division of the NBA, the Tigers will be cruising through a cheesecake conference schedule, studded with a few glamour games. The Tigers will lead off SportsCenter on ESPN every time they play. The Griz will be lucky to make the "crawl" at the bottom of the screen. That increased visibility means more national attention — and more fans in the seats.

I'm a loyal Griz fan, but they're going to have a tough time competing with the Tigers this year for media attention and dollars.

Louis Warren

Memphis

Speedtrap Blues

The town of Piperton, Tennessee, is too small to have its own post office. But that has not kept Piperton from annexing a sliver of Highway 72 between Collierville and the Mississippi state line, posting 45-mile-per-hour speed limit signs, and basically turning that section of Highway 72 into a toll road.  

I drive that road often after dark, and I have never failed to see Piperton police disbursing speeding tickets. A recent news article said that Piperton has its sights set on building a $700,000 city hall building. I'd be surprised if an impoverished Fayette County hamlet like Piperton needs a $700,000 city hall, but the town will certainly be able to afford it if it keeps "taxing" everyone passing through.

After about 40 trips, I got stopped and presented with a $125.75 toll fee. (My attention slipped after hearing somebody on the radio make the absurd claim that Bill Gates is an atheist. If Gates is an atheist, then all Christians should be so philanthropic, but I digress.) So, I am writing to urge fellow Memphians to be alert and drive slowly on Highway 72 between Piperton and the Mississippi line.

Steve Smalling Memphis

Tom Wright

I just stumbled on Leonard Gill's article about Tom Wright's book, Roadwork: Rock & Roll Turned Inside Out (Books, August 23rd issue).

I met Tom in 1961. We went to Ealing Art School together. Though I've caught up with him recently, the last time I'd seen him was the day of the police bust, over 40 years ago. That kind of time span widens your perspective.

Because Tom is the kind of person who would never lower himself to make such a claim, allow me to say it for him: For everyone lucky enough to know him, Tom Wright was the Sixties.

Tim Bartlett

Norwich, England

Meat Kills

A landmark study released this week by the prestigious World Cancer Research Fund has found a "convincing" link between consumption of red meat and all processed meats and an elevated risk of colon cancer, as well as a "likely" link with cancers of the lung, stomach, pancreas, esophagus, prostate, and uterus.

The study was based on 7,000 diet and health reports selected from a worldwide pool of 500,000 spanning the past five decades.

Since 1992, the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition, involving 521,483 individuals in 10 European countries, has published dozens of reports linking meat consumption with increased risk of cancers of the stomach, liver, kidneys, pancreas, gallbladder, colon, rectum, esophagus, lungs, breast, uterus, cervix, ovaries, prostate, and testicles.

Hundreds of other studies have found a correlation between meat consumption and some form of cancer. None have ever found an inverse relationship.

Like heart disease and other chronic illnesses, cancer is a largely self-inflicted condition. The American Cancer Society estimates that 62 percent of all cancer deaths could be prevented by quitting tobacco and meat products, as well as by regular screenings and exercise.

We've spent billions of dollars in search of a silver bullet to vanquish this dreaded disease, but we've had [the bullet] all along. It's the will to improve our diet and lifestyle.

Manny Compton

Memphis

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