Soap Box: Aug. 24-30 | Letters | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly

Soap Box: Aug. 24-30 

On fixing Salt Lake City, panhandling and We Olive wordplay.

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Cover story, Aug. 24, "15 Ways to Fix SLC"
I think author Ryan Cunningham missed the mark by leaving out the idea of a lottery. Since Utah's state legislators would never permit any form of gambling, perhaps Salt Lake City could have its own lottery, and all proceeds could go to providing services for the homeless.
Janice Rinsky,
Salt Lake City

Dear Ryan,
     We just left SLC after a 14-hour layover on a trip to leave our son at University of Colorado, Boulder. We picked up City Weekly at Even Steven's sandwich spot.
      I just read aloud your "15 Ways to Fix SLC" to my husband as we drove west, and we were laughing out loud during your call to replace your city's flag. You are a talented journahumourist. It would be interesting to hear who you would appoint to the subcommittee.
     Thanks for a summary of your city's issues. It is not unlike those we confront in San Francisco—that bastion of liberalism. We were thinking it would be great to have a book introducing all major cities in this way.
     Wishing you well with appreciation.
Debbie Lee,
San Francisco

I have to say that I like most of these ideas for change in Salt Lake, especially an underground rail system, i.e. London. In addition, I am fed up with drivers going 85 mph, driving recklessly, putting on makeup, texting, you name it! Some highway patrol we have.
Via Twitter

This was quite the good read!
Laura Jane
Via Facebook

Can a story be both comprehensive and hypothetical? If it's written by @RyCunn, it can.
Via Twitter

Some provocative out-of-the-box ideas in @CityWeekly about improving Salt Lake. Thanks, @RyCunn! Interesting.
Via Twitter

Salt Lake City Weekly, I love your tongue-in-cheek. Great goals. Great article.
Chris Whiting
Via Facebook

Fix the air first, numb nuts.
Ben Taylor
Via Facebook

Your writers have been reading Marx again, I see. Lots of contradictory ideas to save the city (build cheap housing in expensive districts but keep historical buildings). How will your white readers in the Avenues react to that?
     I will give you your due on alcohol. Our system in Utah is not at all free market. GOP claims to support the free market. On that we totally agree!
Jay Lalik
Via Facebook

Panhandler Entertainment
I love reading City Weekly and keeping myself updated with this city.
     I moved here seven years ago and have noticed the drastic changes that have occurred in that time.
     Reading the article "15 Ways To Fix SLC," I noticed the author mentioned needing creative ideas. Well, this idea I had came about from noticing the overwhelming growth of panhandlers and homeless. Now, I know there's more research that needs to go into this idea, and with that said:
     I, myself, am sick of the acts some of these people put on—the frowning faces, the props they use. I think if we are to wait in traffic, and they want money, we should make a productive, useful reason to help each other out.
     Some of the ideas I have, and please know this is just brainstorming is: A sign—recycled—saying, "I'm a panhandler here to stay. What can I do to help or entertain you without going back or to jail? Maybe this can be on a T-shirt and on the back it can say, "Deal with the issue!" ...
     We can even incorporate ways to clean up the streets. Maybe the intersections or sides of town that have the panhandlers contributing to the environment can receive money donated from big businesses there or ... from the residents. It could bring more pride and give them useful work.
     I know if you're a criminal, you may not get hired and I am sure there are many reasons for panhandling, but either way, we all know that competition makes you better and forces you to think outside the box.
     I think panhandlers need to step up their game and maybe not be so depressing for themselves and us.
Samantha Reese,
Salt Lake City

Dine, Aug. 24, "The Power of We"
My name is Josh Garcia, one of the owners of We Olive in Trolley Square. First, I want to say thank you for your kind words and fantastic write-up. It was a pleasant surprise when a friend texted me a link to the article earlier this morning. We really appreciate it, and are so happy that you enjoyed your visit to We Olive.
     The one thing I wanted to reach out to you about was the name of the store. As far as my understanding, the original location (which was retail only) in Paso Robles was named, or at least the tagline of the store was "You Live, I Live, We Olive (We All Live)." So, it's a play on words paying tribute to the health benefits when it comes to olive oil, healthy living and that Mediterranean lifestyle.
     The current principal owners of the company are the ones that introduced the wine bar concept to the business, and branded the company We Olive. But I will be honest with you, even within the company there is a dispute about the etymology of the name since the original owners are no longer involved.
     It's just one of those funny things, I guess, that creates mystery within the company and its guests.
Josh Garcia,
Salt Lake City

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