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Letters published June 11, 2008 

"Grand Theft Auto Tremont," May 28

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Tremont pioneer reacts to portrait of 'hood: Most of my Tremont neighbors and I find the above article to be weak in factual reporting. It is filled with socioeconomic snobbery, riddled with undercurrents of racism, and insulting to my neighborhood friends, with unnecessary and inappropriate elitist snide disguised as adjectives.

Tremont is an urban neighborhood, but no different than any other. It is far more rich in art, talent, and experience than the homogenized suburbs of any city, not just Cleveland. We are, however, no less safe than others because of our zip code. Suburbs have crime too. You just don't hear about the serious crimes. The difference? The news, the scanners, the community activists are as manicured as the lawns and the acrylic nails.

I defected from the suburbs to find culture, art, cuisine, couture, and real people. I choose to be where life is real, discussed, alive, and diverse . . . not spoon-fed with fake safety and comfort.

I'm grateful this headline article was printed the day I rescued a paper-trained puppy. She's really young, and I'm going to need a good supply of newsprint.

Desiree Schmitt

Not in his neighborhood — or coffee shop, for that matter: Thanks for the article on the crime in Tremont. My wife and I moved there because we found it to be a nice, quiet neighborhood. I recently heard of the car thefts before your article came out and was shocked. We moved back to Tremont after living in the shit called Slavic Village. Watching people get shot and gang fights out our window, we had had enough.

When we moved back to Tremont, we were glad the projects were knocked down. When the $250,000 condos were built, we saw the CMHA sign for them. Needless to say, we got pissed. The people of Tremont are trying hard to make it a beautiful place to live, and Councilman Joe Cimperman made sure the filth moved back in. I will lead the drive to get these scum out, who are moving back on the taxpayers' dollar — the ultimate insult. Cimperman should be pulled from office.

As for the police, with their cheap excuses, they are at Civilization coffee shop nearly the entire time it's open. They don't have time for doughnuts anymore, my ass.

It's up to the people of Tremont to take a stand and get these people out at all costs. A lot of work has been put into the neighborhood, and the progress was going great. I refuse to let the government, the police, and CMHA scum who think crime is a way of life take our neighborhood down.

It's not a matter of skin color. It's a matter of morals.

Mike Salamone

We've always liked a good ear of corn: Overheard at a Crocker Park restaurant, four days after the article by Gus Garcia-Roberts concerning the car thieves in Cleveland's Tremont neighborhood was published: Two mealy-white women, discussing a move to Tremont. "Go ahead and move there. You can go to all the great bars and restaurants, and come back to find your car stolen. I would never move there . . ." Later conversation turned to the intricacies of the smash television hit Lost. (They were "loud talkers.")

This story is anecdotal. It seems to validate what you set out to do: negatively mitigate the efforts of a few people to make a neighborhood thrive and prosper. I will not attempt to refute every fact you limply wrote, although I have spoken to more than one person who has not been affected by these crimes. Moreover, Mitch Paul personally told me he was misquoted.

I can live wherever I choose, but I am excited and proud about what is happening in Cleveland. The Euclid Corridor, Battery Park, Gospel Press Rehab, Medical Mart, and more are all positive structural advances which will provide for growth and prosperity. I regret your next job at the North Royalton Cornhusker will have you missing out on all the fun in Cleveland!

Mike Gazdak

"The Wrath of Bob," May 28

A Deluge of Anger
Condo owner's ire hits the high-water mark: Finally, an article that portrays Bob Gibbs as the selfish, evil lowlife that he is! You'd think his wife would do the right thing and sign off on the condo and let us move on with our lives. But either he takes control over her or she's just as bad as he.



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