Vol. II No.24 Saturday 14 June - 20 June 2003
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LETTERS
HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

Great event not very well organized

Front cover totally without excuse

Blaming the victim for the crime

Great event not very well organized

Dear Editor;

I would like to make a short comment on Thailand’s great organizational skills. I am referring to the ongoing European Film Festival in town, which was very nicely advertised in your newspaper (Issue 22 & 23).

I wanted to reserve some tickets for a movie on the 7th of June, and so I called the reservation number on the 3rd. After being put on hold for about 20 minutes and talking to 3 different girls, all with incredibly bad English, I was told to call back on the 5th, which I did, and on the 5th they told me to come to town because they can’t do anything for me over the phone. Why did they not tell me when I called 2 days earlier? I would have sent our driver who was in town on the 4th ... Great! For your information, I live in Mae Rim, so it is not always easy to find the time to go to Chiang Mai with all the road works and traffic going on right now; so whenever I do go in, for example, to see a movie, I make reservations to be sure I don’t waste too much time.

This was once again a great example of how Thailand with the help of big organizations like the EU tries to do something great, but never actually manages to push through with it. It would be so easy to advertise in the right tabloids (not the tourist magazines) and get lots of people, especially residents of Chiang Mai, to go and attend events like this, even just by sending letters to the embassies or consulates, so that they can contact the people living in the area. And of course leaving a program at the desks of all these girls who are supposed to know what is going on at their workplace. I know by talking to friends that many people are interested but it is just so much hassle. I really hope that next year the event will be better organized and that there will be some ‘ironing out’ of the problems that happened once again this year.

Regards,

J. Burke


Front cover totally without excuse

Dear Chiangmai Mail:

It is totally without excuse that you should put such a picture of hilltribe hauling wood with the accusation that they destroy the forest and take forest products. Of course they do, but they are not the illegal loggers mentioned and you show no connection anywhere in the article save to blast them.

This kind of mindless propaganda is rife in Thailand while these people are exploited on all fronts, without ID and without human rights.

You should know much better than this.

Matthew McDaniel

The Akha Heritage Foundation

Chiang Rai


Blaming the victim for the crime

Editor;

The front page of your May 31 issue, with its photo of hill tribe women collecting firewood with the caption “destroying forests”, and the headline “forests destroyed”, continues to follow the racist line about the evils of the hill tribes.

The forests of the North have been destroyed by Lowlanders for big money, not by Highlanders collecting firewood.

Shame on you: you are blaming the victim for the crime.

Maybe on the front page of your next issue, you can have a large photo of a poor Highlander caught with a handful of speed pills, under the headline “Hill Tribes continue to destroy country with drugs”.

Enough already!

Regards,

Padraig Mac Gobhainn



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