Rowan's WorkI'm an angry white male. I disagree with Carl...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

March 22, 1995

Rowan's Work

I'm an angry white male. I disagree with Carl Rowan on almost every important political and social issue of our time.

Yet, as I followed his columns on the sad state of the NAACP national organization, I applauded his efforts and wished him success.

I'm sure that he found the task of disclosing the venality, cynicism and perhaps even outright dishonesty of some of its highest-ranking officers heart-breaking and that he spent months in wrenching agony before he decided that the boil, if unattended, would surely kill the entire body and so had to be publicly lanced.

Still, even as I applauded, I wondered to myself if I weren't really pleased because a famous black man was publicly attacking a famous black organization.

I wondered if I was really pleased by the public humiliation of a historically great black institution, one whose civil rights activities have benefited every single American regardless of race, gender or ethnicity.

I've decided that maybe I was -- at least a little.

I have to deal with that myself.

But isn't it sad, somehow, that my own myopia causes me to think twice, be wary of my motives and to hesitate in a simple, heartfelt impulse to say to Mr. Rowan, "Congratulations on a tough but necessary job well done."

Richard Walter

Columbia

Art for Sale

I realize that the Lucas art collection is viewed as a treasure by the Walters Art Gallery and the Baltimore Museum of Art, but I wonder why the BMA did not dedicate its new wing to the collection and call it the Lucas Building?

Is it because, truly, it would not be a draw for the BMA and only appeals to an esoteric few?

And if the Walters or the BMA had to purchase this collection -- as opposed to having use of it free of charge -- would purchasing be considered? Or would either museum only opt for works of art that they would more often prominently display?

The Maryland Institute, on the other hand, is also a treasure. As one of the top five art schools in the country . . . the institute should be supported. The institute must be competitive and must strive to keep its standing.

Equipment needs to be updated, state of the art computer labs need to be implemented and, most importantly, space considerations must be addressed. The institute is growing and cramped for classroom space.

Does this community want to support holding onto a collection that most likely will be housed in the basements of both the BMA and Walters and brought out -- like grandma's special china and dinner wear -- at Thanksgiving and Christmas?

Or do we support the sale of this collection so that the future of the artist in Baltimore can be nurtured?

Anita Klein

Baltimore

Profane Women

Allow me to comment on your March 13 article regarding women and profanity in the workplace.

We are treated to the insights of Judy Rosener, an alleged expert, who tells us that women use profanity at work in order to be "one of the boys."

This strikes me as a deplorably anti-female proposition. If feminism has taught us anything, it is that women are entirely sovereign beings, neither mirrors of men's virtues nor reflections of their vices.

Women use profanity at work and elsewhere for the same reasons men do: they are angry, frustrated; a superior or subordinate has made an error which reflects on them or someone has taken the parking space for which they were waiting.

I am a huge fan of women. In fact, I'm actually married to one.

I must request that their linguistic options not be constrained by some anachronistic notion of a "fairer sex."

Steven G. Koster

Baltimore

Unfair

How is it that Marcia Clark can be headlined as "Bad Mom, Good Prosecutor" when the same label (change the sex, of course) can be put on Johnnie L. Cochran Jr., Mr. Simpson's most visible defense attorney?

Why has the press not made tabloid fodder of the fact that Mr. Cochran, who is on his second marriage, has retained counsel to defend himself against his former mistress' palimony charges?

Ms. Clark is headline; Mr. Cochran is sideline. Men like Mr. Cochran bask in their success -- no strings attached. Women like Ms. Clark are not afforded the same privilege.

Against the "family values" theme delivered by many of our most "respected" men in the government, there is near-universal agreement we must find ways to insure welfare mothers work. But if Ms. Clark is to be our guide, we better not work too hard.

There is much talk of pregnant teen-agers, crack mothers -- very legitimate concerns.

But who is debating irresponsible men who are impregnating these teen-aged mothers? Are we so blind that we cannot see the double standard?

A rosy picture of a mom in the kitchen, dad at the office, is a vanishing option because one paycheck won't cut it. Yet women pay -- for not working and for working.

Can anyone ever recall seeing a prominent professional man ever making the front page headlines for spending too many nights and weekends away from his kids for their own good? Not John F. Kennedy, not Johnnie Cochran.

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