liberal ["liberalis" L - suitable for a freeman, generous; "eleutheros" Gk - free] (adj) generous, open-minded, not subjugated to authoritarian domination; (n) one who believes in liberty, universal suffrage and the free exchange of ideas. elite ["eslire" Fr -- to choose fr.L "eligere" -- choose] (n) the choice part; best of a class; the socially superior part of society.

Monday, December 20, 2004

cultural guerilla war at the strip mall

Please call Roosevelt in Hyde Park, Lyceum in Red Hook, and New Paltz Cinemas to register your outrage!

This amazing letter was transmitted in an email digest from As a part-time resident of New Paltz and a progressive Democrat proud of the gay marriages performed there, I am very offended by this.

The whole thing has an I Love Huckabees (which I saw at the rival New Paltz Plaza Cinemas) flavor to it. I am really looking forward to the fight over this one:

Hilary Kramer, from New Paltz New York:

"Some of you may be aware that a few weeks ago WGHQ-Kingston, 920 AM, formerly an American Pop Standards-type music station owned by Clear Channel, was converted to a 24-hour far-right talk format (Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, etc.). Having subjected myself to a few hours of close listening over the past 2 days, I have stumbled upon some very disconcerting news. The prime local sponsor of the new format is our own New Paltz Cinemas, and they are not advertising in a benign "enjoy the movies" type manner. Here is the text of their ad, allowing for the fact that this transcription cannot convey the obnoxious tone of the announcer:
"'Here is some important news for movie lovers in the Hudson Valley: Hollywood has gone insane, and our values are not often reflected on the silver screen. But three locally owned movie theaters in our area are looking out for you. While we can't bring back the Hollywood of John Wayne, Jimmy Stewart, or Ronald Reagan, the Lyceum Cinemas in Red Hook, the Roosevelt Cinemas in Hyde Park, and the New Paltz Cinemas all refused to play Michael Moore's Fahrenheit 911 this year. We promise to provide the best family film fare that we possibly can at prices you and your family can afford. So when it is movie time, remember who's looking out for you at the Roosevelt Cinemas in Hyde Park, the Lyceum in Red Hook, or the New Paltz Cinemas on Route 299. (contact info removed) And we'll see you at the movies. Hollywood may be insane, but the Lyceum Cinemas in Red Hook, the Roosevelt in Hyde Park, and the New Paltz Cinemas are looking out for you.'

"Right now only one other regional sponsor has ads on the station, Hannaford, although their ad is a simple "shop at Hannaford's, our prices and quality are good" sort of thing without political content. The rest of the ads are the usual baldness cures, eat-without-getting-fat pills, "invention" kits, Vioxx lawsuits, Walmart, etc. associated with the national syndication of these programs. The New Paltz Cinemas and its sister theaters Lyceum and Roosevelt are the sole local account supporting this radio station, and the ad shows they actively support the station's new content.

"Further, as any local resident can attest, the NP Cinemas doesn't restrict itself to Disney movies. It is clear that they are actively blocking progressive political speech as a business practice, and soliciting customers on that basis. Considering the political leanings of our community, this hardly seems like a sensible business practice, unless they are relying on us not finding out about it by placing the ad only on a station they assume we will not hear. I urge you to contact the owner and tell them that you will withhold your business until they change their advertising and movie booking policies."

The owner/operator is:
Independent Cinemas
7270 South Broadway
Red Hook, NY 12571

I have not yet been able to discover their phone number. However, here is a listing of Hudson Valley Cinemas.

Please call Roosevelt in Hyde Park, Lyceum in Red Hook, and New Paltz Cinemas to register your outrage!


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