Zedillo and the Zapatistas Congratulations to the Monitor for being one of few major newspapers to recognize Mexico's unresolved conflict over indigenous rights, on the occasion of the fifth anniversary of the Zapatista uprising ("Close family encounter with the Chiapas revolt," Jan. 7). One point merits correction, however. The article referred to the town of "San Andrs - famous for hosting the peace talks in 1995 that resulted in initial accords the government never signed...." Actually, President Ernesto Zedillo's representatives did sign the accords on Feb. 16, 1996. Zedillo subsequently backed out of his commitments. According to former government negotiators, Mr. Zedillo was willing to sign at first because he was about to leave for Europe, and he needed something in hand to facilitate negotiations of a trade agreement with the European Union. Apparently his government is now less concerned with its international image, since no progress has been made toward serious recognition of indigenous rights. Only now, a year after the Acteal massacre of 45 unarmed indigenous people, did the government get around to arresting some of the state officials involved. The San Andrs Accords remain a key reference point for Mexico's broad-based national indigenous rights movement, and an unofficial national referendum is being organized for March 21 in an effort to overcome the political deadlock. Jonathan A. Fox Santa Cruz, Calif. Associate professor of social sciences University of California, Santa Cruz Damaged Democrats Regarding your editorial "The Senate Listens to History" (Jan. 9): One has to wonder why President Clinton inspires so many in the Democrat Party to "take an arrow" for him. The loyalty can't be due to what he has done for the party. I think he is making it harder for his party to regain the seats lost in Congress and governors' mansions since 1992. The campaigns in 2000 will probably see the Republicans make accusations that the Democrat Party stands for womanizing, lying, and character assassination. The president is making his party vulnerable to charges of facilitating the sale of missile technology to help the Chinese better target their nuclear missiles at our children. A rational person might think that we Democrats would want to disassociate ourselves from Mr. Clinton and move on to an Al Gore presidency. It would damage our nation if we let the conservatives come out of this whole sordid Clinton mess looking like they were right. Bobbi Jones Corvallis, Ore. 'Hypocrites' vs. Larry Flynt I am ecstatic that someone - even if it is Flynt - is exposing the sexual affairs of hypocritical Republican politicians ("Press and Politics in the Age of 'Flynting,' " Jan. 11). If the Republicans are going to continually beat the drum of the religious right and pontificate about morals to the American public, then they'd better be sure they are above reproach. It's not like Clinton sold national secrets to the Russians. It is all about sex. So it doesn't surprise me that Flynt has joined the discussion. Carl Stanford Cedar Rapids, Iowa I heard an interview with Larry Flynt's daughter. She spoke of a terribly sad childhood in which she experienced sexual abuse at the hands of her father. She has survived remarkably well, is happily married, and is a strong advocate against the type of trash from which Larry Flynt has gained his dubious reputation. She has purposely retained the Flynt name, she said, because she wants people to know that the name is connected to efforts to inform and protect people from the harm that pornography can cause. Flynt should not be hailed as a "pundit," but should have been put behind bars long ago. John Rooker Haverhill, Mass. The Monitor welcomes your letters and opinion articles. Because of the volume of mail, only a selection can be published, and we can neither acknowledge nor return unpublished submissions. Mail letters to 'Readers Write,' and opinion articles to Opinion Page, One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115, or fax to 617-450-2317, or e-mail to oped@csps.com

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