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November 2012 Mailbag

Posted in Features on November 1, 2012
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Hippie Mail Bomb—Pro
In your August ’12 Trail Head, you could not have said this better. I also enjoy the outdoors in many ways: hunting, fishing, four-wheeling, and so and on. I am a veteran and also support everyone’s right to free speech. But, we are all here to enjoy and live together. That means we all should have equal access to all publicly owned lands. I have owned seven different Jeeps, at least 10 other four-wheel-drive vehicles, and numerous ATV and other off-road vehicles. We (my family and friends) are very respectful of the land and resources that we have been blessed with.

I live in Oregon and am old enough to have watched the destruction of the economy and families of our wonderful state caused by the hippie tree-hugger nut jobs. Now we have to sit back and watch the wilderness burn due to their ignorance. Thanks for saying what we all want to say. Thanks also for a great magazine.

Christian, good for you for telling it like it is! Not only do you have the balls for saying it, but publishing it as well!
Aaron Meyer
Zionsville, IN

Just got my August ’12 issue and read Trail Head. Allow me to begin. Here is your standing ovation from the readers who get it. Strong work.
Joel F.
Via email

I loved the August ’12 Trail Head. I don’t believe I could have put those smelly hippiecrites in their place any better. There is nothing peaceful or loving about these people when you have a difference of opinion. Just because my wife and I own a Jeep and enjoy wheeling does not mean we are out to destroy everything we touch. I know there are boneheads out there with big tires and peanuts for brains that will crap on everything that they touch. We have lost trails and could face future closings in the Ozark National Forest due to irresponsibility, whether from four-wheel-drive vehicles or ATVs. Now before you send people to my house with torches and pitchforks, remember I said irresponsible four-wheelers and ATVers. We are not all the same. Some of us believe in taking care of what we have been given so that future generations can have access to these same trails. Thanks for a great magazine. Keep up the good work. I hope your boss gives you a raise.
Mike D.
Van Buren, AR

I could not agree with you more. Thank you for writing your August ’12 Trail Head! It is about time somebody writing for a major magazine simply wrote the truth and didn’t worry about what is politically correct.
Chad Reed
Via email

I have wanted a Jeep for years. I mean, years! They’re a bit expensive and rather impractical, and there was always somewhere better to put the money into: the house, the wife, the kid—you know how that goes.

Coming up on 60 years old, as I was looking to buy probably the last car I’ll ever buy, the wife told me to go buy my Jeep. And I did: an ’05 Wrangler X. Buddy, this thing is a riot! I love it! It was worth every minute of the 38 years I waited for it. I may be getting buried in my Triumph GT6, but I’ll be driving to the funeral in my Jeep!

Anyway, there are fancier names for it nowadays, but I’m a stock boy at a grocery store. I work the night shift. I went past the magazine rack last night with a case of Chef-Boy-R-Dee and couldn’t help but notice the “Fight! Hippies vs. Off-Roaders” cover blurb on the August ’12 issue of your magazine. I bought a copy on the way out this morning to check it out.

Thanks. I mean it, many thanks. I am one of your dad’s brothers in arms. I am a partially disabled, honorably discharged combat veteran of America’s war in Vietnam. I am also a 40-year veteran of America’s war on the Vietnam vet. I have waited years for someone to say something like you did in your Trail Head column. I appreciate it a lot.
Mike Hemken
Via email

Ya know, when I sat down to write that editorial I half expected to ignite a powder keg of controversy. Instead, I think I released a powder keg of pent-up frustration, emotion, and hurt. The response was staggering. By probably a ratio of at least 100:1, I received more email about my August ’12 Trail Head than any other story I’ve written. And surprisingly (to me), the response was overwhelmingly positive. Of the literally hundreds of emails, Facebook messages, and in-person thanks I got about that story, only three of them voiced any kind of negative or dissenting opinion. And of those three, only two were coherent enough to print. Which reminds me….

Hippie Mail Bomb—Con
No respect for you. Is it wrong to want to breathe clean air and to drink clean water? I love hugging trees. I buy American cars. Do you drive your Lexus to the office? Yes, I live in a timber frame house built of wood. It’s 80 years old, and I recycle and reuse whenever possible. When I want to get away I head for the woods, and yes, with a Jeep. I enjoy the cool shade and the smell of nature. But quite often next to me is some redneck with his big, ugly pickup that he needs a step ladder to get into. So damn loud you can’t even hear yourself talk. And of course, beer.

I would rather hang with an old hippie than someone who has no respect for other people or property—someone who rips up nature rather than treads lightly. Maybe it’s the redneck pick-’em-ups that you’re talking about?
Dave Armstrong
Via email

One of my husband’s patients left your magazine in the waiting room of our acupuncture studio. I can’t believe how stinging your words were in your column. I’m horrified at the thought of how many of our clients were exposed to the hatred you spew forth before I found and destroyed the copy. As a life-long supporter of the Sierra Club, Greenpeace, and many other eco-friendly organizations, I recoiled in horror as you repeatedly fired off the phrase, “F*#ck you, hippie.” How mature is that? You’re just like those Neanderthals who deride and taunt people like me for wearing clothing displaying slogans against America’s overbearing military power or who honk and jeer at my bumper stickers at traffic stops. It’s called free speech and I have a right to voice my love of nature and my disdain for right-wing wackos whose only wish is to shoot animals for fun or oppress weaker nations with this country’s disgusting military might. The quicker everybody is disarmed and your unsafe, smoke-spewing, environmentally damaging vehicles outlawed, the better. The world will be a better place once people like you are gone.
Name withheld
Via email

So you can have your free speech, but not me? F*#ck you, hippie.

Sharp and Awesomeness
Thanks for featuring the down-to-earth flattie, “Sharp and Dangerous,” (Aug. ’12). It was a breath of fresh air and unspent fuel to see a barn-find vehicle resurrected and made to go. However, you are wrong-o about the windshield. It doesn’t fit, but not because it’s a CJ-2A windshield on a CJ-3A tub; the windshields between the two are perfectly interchangeable. It has fitting issues probably because the arms were bent back when the windshield brushed up against a tree. The arms need to be heated and set back to their original positions. If that’s not the issue, then the pivot brackets are in the wrong positions. There’s no cowl seal on the windshield either, which would also contribute to bringing the windshield even closer to the steering wheel. Having said all that, it appears that the Jeep’s owner is okay with it just the way it is.
Nick Jan
British Columbia, Canada

FSJ Save
Long story short, I was inspired by your Monkey Bus ’78 Cherokee Chief project, and after some finagling I sold my ’64 Scout and bought a really clean ’76 Wagoneer from Arizona. It has a new AMC-blue paintjob, a rebuilt 360, rebuilt TH400, and rebuilt Quadra-Trac—all for $1,500!

It’s my new family hauler and all was sweet…until the other day when I was reading back issues of Jp and read about the ammeter on your Jeep frying. We were headed out to get new tires so I said, “I’ll bypass my ammeter when we get home. It should be alright till then. After all, it has lasted 30-some years.” Well, fate (or electrical gremlins) had different plans. I kid you not—we made it a mile down the road before I saw a little whiff of smoke come out of the gauges! I slammed on the binders, pulled over, and shut it down! I then disconnected the charge lead from the alternator and headed home. When I crawled under the dash, I found the yellow ammeter lead fried just about an inch or two off the gauge. The alternator was toast, along with the gauge cluster, but luckily I shut it down before the wiring loom got it! Whew, close call!

Anyway, it’s fixed now, and if it weren’t for you guys, I may have kept driving, or not known where to start. So thank you, and keep up the stellar magazine work!
Andrew Stanecki
Stevens Point, WI

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