Letters to the Editor

'Music to my ears'

Tony Cruz's letter Jan. 16 describes a plague that has descended over this entire country: vehicles rigged with stereo amplifiers so powerful they can rattle windowpanes several blocks away.

Boom-box vehicles have given birth to an entire subculture dedicated to offending any thinking person's sensibilities. The sole purpose of these ear-splitting stereos is to draw attention to the driver -- "Look at me! Look at me!" -- while he or she travels down the road with the windows rolled down, even in sub-freezing temperatures. They'll park outside of a convenience store and leave the "thoomp! thoomp! thoomp!" on while they go inside, in another vain attempt to show the rest of us just how cool they are.

There is a solution: Give any driver with a vehicle playing amplified sounds in excess of 80 decibels a summons: a $250 fine for first offenders; multiple offenders would face confiscation of their vehicles. New York and Chicago have these anti-boom box ordinances, with Chicago having impounded thousands of vehicles.

Naturally, these drivers would complain. Let them complain! In a much quieter Valley, such complaints would be music to my ears.

Michael Kincheloe