Prop. 187 needs rethinking

The opinion-page article ``Harassment in the Wake of Proposition 187,'' Dec. 27, misses the point in claiming that Prop. 187 is bad because of its unintended consequences. It is bad because it is a proposition.

Such populist measures may restore ``power to the people but in the process they are destroying the republican form of governance guaranteed under the Constitution.

Let's not delude ourselves. Propositions, initiatives, and referendums may well have their place in government. But when they are used to avoid rather than complement representative government we will eventually reap a whirlwind of democratic anarchy that our Constitution was designed to prevent. We had better give serious thought to our frantic pursuit of happiness before we catch up to it. John R. Carter, Earlysville, Va.

Your letters are welcome. For publication they must be signed and include your address and telephone number. Only a selection can be published, and none acknowledged. Letters should be addressed to ``Readers Write,'' and can be sent by Internet E-mail (200 word maximum) to OPED@RACHEL.CSPS.COM, by fax to 617-450-2317, or by mail to One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115

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