Nat's Part of the Problem

Nat Dance may imagine himself a victim of harassment from Virginia Commonwealth University ("534 Club License Again in Question," Street Talk, May 18), but that is in disregard of his neighbors who have to bunker down every Thursday night when his hood-rat patrons disperse in the community. Before the club opens, many of his customers invade the restrooms of the local restaurants without any regard to maintaining their cleanliness. (I don't think Nat Dance would appreciate that kind of violation by nonpaying attendants at Manhattans, his very classy downtown restaurant.) Then, like clockwork, at 2 a.m., throngs of his patrons exit the club, hyped up by booze, gangster rap, and dance-floor hoochie-grinding, and blast the neighborhood with loud music and arguments that often flare up into gunfire exchange. Last summer, a stray bullet was shot into my building. Two weeks ago, a car was torched in one of the parking lots that their customers fill at the inconvenience of paying occupants. There is obvious drug use, as evidenced by the littering of rolled tobacco and miniature baggies left from preparing marijuana blunts.

The rowdiness absorbs almost all of VCU Police resources each week, distracting them from responding to other police emergencies. In assessing her decision, Hearing Officer Gilliam amazingly heard only from the Richmond Police Department, which had no evidence because the area is not their jurisdiction. She totally disregarded the arrests, complaints, drug paraphernalia and weapons collected by the VCU Police. She should be at least reprimanded for her obvious nepotism and negligence.

Nat Dance is not a poor victim of circumstance. He is deliberately targeting a gangsta market because it turns a plentiful profit for him. He has absolutely no regard for his neighborhood in doing this. There are other nightclubs in the area that hardly generate this amount of weekly chaos as they are more interactive with the community. Nat Dance deserves as little consideration in getting his ABC license renewed as he gives in sponsoring a positive element in this area.

Victoria Ward
VCU sophomore, Fan resident

Azaleas Continue to Shock and Dismay

I am appalled by the article regarding the azalea plants arranged in the shape of cross in which Mike Sarahan depicts the cross ("Azalea Display Prompts Pause," Street Talk, May 4) as "a blooming violation of church and state" and "a Constitutional violation that blooms once a year."

I simply cannot believe he has the audacity to say, "You can understand in the sensibilities of the time 40 or 50 years ago. But in the sensibilities of our time, in a multicultural and interfaith society, we should be more attuned." "Sensibilities" of our time?! What's happened is that all sensibility has been stripped of "our time" from when things were far more peaceful 40 to 50 years ago.

I'm tired of everyone being offended by anything that brings a level of peace, harmony, faith or spirituality to our lives. Face it, our country was founded on religious principles and those were primarily of Christian basis. The azalea garden is not repressing anyone religiously, nor is it sending the message that our country is, because a Christian-based cross is displayed, somehow anti-every-other-religion.

Some of you people need to get a grip.

Cynthia R. Lanham

"A blooming violation of church and state"??? Wow ... Some people will do anything to push God out of their lives and others', if they love their sin enough. Only problem is, they will still bow the knee to Him someday: either as Savior by trusting in the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ now in this life, or bowing the knee with Him as their Judge one day. That'll be too late though. Philippians 2:9-11.

Tedford Hyde
Lake Mary, Fla.


Because of incorrect information supplied to us, we misspelled the name of Virginia Museum of Fine Arts benefactor Ailsa Mellon Bruce ("Generous Moments in VMFA History," Sidebar to Cover Story, May 18).

We misidentified the name of Philip Estrada's fashion line ("Punk Was Just a Way to Sell Trousers," Night & Day, May 11). It should have read PSYMBIOTIC. Style regrets the errors.

Letters to the editor may be sent to: letters@styleweekly.com


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