Recycling rebuttal

My letter is in response to Meagan Terry’s Sept. 3 opinion on paper usage. Recycling paper is beneficial to the environment because it is a less wasteful, less polluting and more efficient process than making new paper. However, it is important to note recycling paper does not save trees, which are a natural, renewable resource. In fact, in the United States, there are three times more trees today than there were in 1920. Paper is created from trees grown specifically for paper production; for every tree that is cut down, more are planted in its place. If you want more trees, use more paper.

Recycling is still a polluting, wasteful manufacturing process. Recycled paper must be bleached just like new paper, and the same air pollutants are created. Recycling is not universally good – it’s simply better. As suggested in the article, the most environmentally-friendly action is to use less paper.

The opinion also argues that recycling paper addresses the landfill problem. A significant technicality to that argument is there is no landfill problem in the United States. John Tierney has said in The New York Times, if all of the garbage in the United States was put in a landfill 100 yards deep, by the year 3000, it would fill a square plot of land only 35 miles on a side. Of course, landfills are scattered across the country, but garbage can be easily exported and imported as needed. In New Jersey, there hasn’t been a landfill problem in 20 years (unless you consider too much landfill space a problem).

Disgruntled reader

I feel that it becomes important after a while to reassess why it is we continue the practices we partake in. After reading through the Arts & Entertainment section of the Sept. 10 Signal, I find myself wondering why we even bother to write articles on the subject. I totally understand the “album review section,” as its clear goal is to inform and evaluate new pieces of contemporary music. However, after reading through the article reviewing our most recent CUBRat concert, featuring Jukebox the Ghost, I have trouble understanding why the author even bothered writing the piece. It is evident the author has, aside from no knowledge or appreciation of contemporary music, very little interest in this event at all. Aside from the fact that she named a few of the songs, briefly quoted the vocalist and made cursory observations on each band’s clothing, I am convinced the author didn’t even attend the concert and just ran autoplay on each band’s MySpace profile.

Furthermore, being that I was present at the event, it is obvious that the author was either not paying attention to the music at all, or just didn’t care to take note of any details whatsoever.

The author wrote “.a song sung in three-part harmony about the apocalypse.” Anyone who attended this event could clearly see that there were only two members singing in Jukebox the Ghost.

On top of the sloppy and sophomoric review of Jukebox the Ghost, the author goes on to take the liberty of thrashing the opening band “The Extrordinaires.” Apparently she had a problem with their plain style of dress; maybe it was because of this she neglected to notice the actual band or their music. As much as I am trying to keep this review compartmentalized from my own subjective observations of each band and their music, I just can’t understand how any college student could ever observe The Extrordinaires “lacked individuality.” Most of their songs were about monsters and cacti, incorporating elements of indie, folk, bluegrass, doo-wop and other varied styles. Beyond their musical flavor, they actually distributed their albums in handmade books containing full-color illustrated short stories. One of their albums is a full-length rock opera about pirates.

I could go on further, but it would just be redundant. I guess my point is if The Signal can’t seem to find an author who at least has an minor interest in music (or for starters can tell the difference between two and three), I think that they would be better off not wasting the space on a page with garbage reviews.

Erik K. Romero