A cultural opportunity worth savingA cultural opportunity...

the Forum

June 20, 1991

A cultural opportunity worth saving

A cultural opportunity has been lost to Baltimore: the reappearance of the Donetsk Ballet which was to have performed at the Lyric Theatre the weekend of May 17, and again in October and December. Unfortunately, the planned series had to be canceled due to low ticket sales.

Cancellation of the Donetsk Ballet series means Baltimore has lost the opportunity to see an indigenous Russian ballet company perform three unquestioned masterpieces of Russian dance, and that a long-term relationship between the Donetsk and Baltimore may have been nipped in the bud.

Perhaps the aborted association can be rekindled by some consortium of private sector executives, city, county and state governments, the Maryland State Arts Council and dance departments of academe, which could bring the Donetsk back for the enrichment of Baltimore's cultural life.

The Donetsk Ballet, with its heritage of classical ballet and its Russian flair, would nicely complement the modern dance of the Alvin Ailey Company. If both enjoyed residencies in Baltimore, like a medieval diptych, they would present two perspectives on dance, equally valuable and rich.

Joseph Hines


Military spending

Generally your anti-military bias is more subtle than exhibited in your June 14 editorial on General Akin. You indicate that at 20 percent, the military's share of the budget is too high because that figure, added to fixed outlays for entitlements and debt service, leaves only 15 percent for the rest of the government.

By your figures, 65 percent of the budget goes for entitlements and debt service. According to other stories you have published, about 15 percent goes for debt service. That leaves 50 percent for "entitlements" - your euphemism for the myriad of welfare programs. Thus the welfare portion of the budget is 2 1/2 times larger than the military portion, not one-tenth as large.

As for your pejorative comments on "military socialism," it should be noted that this "military socialism" is largely responsible for bTC the fact that your paper is still being printed in English rather than German, Japanese or Russian.

Robert J. Martinez


Family planning

Unless you consider abortion to be birth control, I don't see the problem with Title X funds' being limited to family planning clinics only. Planning your family means planning before you become pregnant.

Once you become pregnant, you do not go to a family planning clinic. Planned Parenthood can continue to operate its lucrative abortion business in a clinic appropriately called an "abortion clinic."

What is wrong with calling something what it is? Since Planned Parenthood insists that abortion is not a form of birth control, what is the problem? Unless, of course, what they say is not what they mean.

Marilyn Szewczyk


Bush's real agenda

The reprinting of George Bush's 1973 glowing tribute to Planned Parenthood (Other Voices, June 7) aptly exposes the utter fraud of the president's current masquerade as a "born-again" convert to the pro-life cause. But the accompanying editorial misses the real scandal this implies.

Four years earlier, then-Congressman Bush personally invited the overtly racist pseudo-scientists, William Shockley and Arthur Jensen, to testify before the Republican Task Force on Earth Resources and Population, which he chaired. After first giving these two charlatans a forum in which to spread their poison about the need to sterilize black welfare mothers and prevent the proliferation of "inferior" races, Bush himself summarized their testimony to the entire House one month later without a word of criticism, but with effusive praise for Shockley's efforts to avert "a down-breeding of the quality of the U.S. population."

This unabashed endorsement of racist eugenics makes all too clear Bush's real motivation for his crusade against "overpopulation" during that period. If he has since then flip-flopped on the abortion issued, his underlying commitment to exorcise the demon of "down-breeding" has remained obsessively invariant. As his black and brown-skinned war victims in Panama and Iraq might eloquently testify, abortion is by no means the only way to achieve that evil purpose.

Douglas Mallouk


Inside job

A long time ago MTA drivers carried change, collected fares and at the end of their shift, turned the money in at the bus depot. Later, drivers were held up and robbed, so the MTA changed the system, and every passenger has to drop the correct fare into the fare box.

Recently, The Evening Sun reported that an MTA security officer was expected to be arrested for stealing at least $500,000. Three other employees are already under arrest. This shows that precautions do not help if some employees are not honest.

W. Meyer


New low for Lane

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