Words and Gender
Editor: In the March 10 article entitled ''Feminist Speaks Out Against War Using Words as Weapons'', it is said that Robin Morgan ''feels the patriarchal tendency to compartmentalize inclines men toward violence.''
In her description of compartmentalization, she claims that categorizing people by ''sex, age, race . . .'' separates ''intellect from emotion'' and ''thought from action.''
Interestingly, she describes U.S. military brass as ''. . . white, middle-aged males . . .'' -- a description that categorizes by sex, age and race. Is Ms. Morgan a patriarchal feminist?
Jon R. Ryan
The writers chairs a committee on gender bias for the National Coalition of Free Men.
Editor: Judging by Ellen Goodman's Opinion * Commentary column, "Bashing Bigot-Bashers," it appears that Ms. Goodman favors the Orwellian "thought police" concept of ridding our society of bigots. I wonder if she has forgotten the favorite shield of her profession, the First Amendment of our Constitution.
While I may disagree with what some people say and the way in which they express themselves, the right to free speech still exists, despite those who would impose a form of censorship -- a word purportedly anathema to the news media. This form has the title "politically correct," and covers a wide range of no-no subjects, including, but not limited to, racial, ethnic, feminist and homosexual slurs or jokes.
It doesn't take a great leap of the imagination to envision the college students indoctrinated to politically correct thought turning one another, or their parents, relatives and friends, in to the enforcers -- censorship is not effective unless there are those who can make you be a good girl or good boy.
Morality cannot be legislated. God knows liberals fought the Moral Majority long and hard during the 1980s to avoid any legislation of morals. Please remember, Ms. Goodman, the last attempt to force morality on the public, the 18th Amendment, was an abject failure.
You might also refresh your memory regarding that old saw: "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names can never hurt me." The advocacy of politically correct thought may just lead to sticks and stones or worse.
George B. Gammie.
Editor: Barry Rascovar was correct to write April 7 that the state will have to find money to pay for roads, bridges and mass-transit lines. My committee understands this. So do I.
However, Mr. Rascovar was not correct to assert that I ''repeatedly rejected'' a five-cent-a-gallon increase for such projects. On the contrary, I have always supported a gas tax bill for these vital projects, going back for years when I served on the Hellman Commission.
Further, it should be noted that the Senate passed a fee bill for transportation needs. This was not ''ego gratification'' but a serious attempt to balance the needs of the state in difficult times of recession and preserve federal funds.
The writer chairs the Senate Budget and Taxation Committee.
Editor: In a story April 4, it was stated that the Maryland Ballet, of which I have the honor to be president of the board, had a cost of $20,000 for a weekend of dance. That is true.
The story appeared to give the impression that the Baltimore Museum of Art, where the company had danced for the last three years, received that amount from us. That is untrue.
The Baltimore Museum of Art charged us only a very small and token amount for the use of the space, and for that we are and always will be very grateful. The BMA is and has been, and I would hope always will be, the best friend that the Maryland Ballet has ever had as far as the major arts organizations in Baltimore are concerned.
It has allowed us to dance there, has been supportive in listing us in its monthly programs and bulletins, and has been all that a best friend could ever be.
It is with deep regret that we leave the BMA and move on to new space. This is a cost-cutting measure. The Maryland Ballet needs to conserve every dollar we can, and sometimes this entails leaving an old friend such as the BMA.
If every arts organization in the state did for us what the Baltimore Museum of Art has done for us, we could dance like the wind.
John I. Kohler II.
On General Powell
Editor: For those of us who are black and who remember how things used to be, there emerges a tantalizing, hopeful reality about our form of government and our people, that in our lifetimes a black American general could speak to all American service personnel unself-consciously on the subject of their (and, coincidentally, our) patriotism.
avid E. Sloan.
From the Gulf: Thanks for the Comfort