Many options for a woman on the ticket

Regarding your article "Who's on a dream ticket in 2000?" (March 13): If you are correct that the Republican and Democratic dream tickets won't include a female vice- presidential candidate, it is indeed a sad day for those who believe that gender parity in our government makes good sense for the future of America. There are at least 10 women who are qualified to be vice president of the United States at this time, if only Bush and Gore are bold enough to select one as a running mate.

There are potential female vice presidents in every geographical area of the country. These potential candidates have various religious backgrounds and levels of experience, but they are all considered outsiders because they are women. That outsider image could be an advantage this year.

So whether they select Rep. Nancy Pelosi, or Sen. Dianne Feinstein, Gov. Christine Whitman, or Elizabeth Dole, Gov. Jeanne Shaheen, or Lt. Gov. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, Sen. Olympia Snowe, or some other qualified woman, Bush and Gore have the opportunity to open up our government's leadership to new thinking and fresh insights.

George A. Dean, Southport, Conn.

Rock music blown out of proportion

Regarding "White power winning ears with pop rock" (March 8): I fail to see the issue suggesting that there is a crisis in this country concerning white-supremacy hate groups winning over the hearts and minds of our youth.

For over a decade, "gangsta rap" lyrics, written and performed by black artists, have glorified white-race hatred, race wars, destruction of property, cop-killing, drug abuse, and misogyny. No one sees this as a threat? Given the influence rap music has had (which is purchased predominantly by white youth, mostly to upset their parents), it comes as no surprise such a white-pop "backlash" should occur. In the end, it will all come to nothing, as it is all being hugely blown out of proportion.

When "boomers" were young we also listened to things that appalled our parents and society in general, and we generally ignored such "messages" as we matured. We became accountants, stockbrokers, bankers, lawyers, astronauts, doctors, even president. Kids will always look for the extremes in order to stretch boundaries and give them a better sense of self. Give our youth the same leeway and benefit of the doubt that we had!

Thomas A. Olson, New York

Movies and the Mexican government

Your March 10 article "Art imitates life in scathing film on Mexico leaders" was thought-provoking, but barely touched on the main reasons for the continued corruption of the Mexican government. While it is a step forward that the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) is now reluctantly allowing itself to be parodied in public, this will not result in the government behaving more ethically or loosening its grip on political power. As your writer points out, with movie tickets costing roughly a whole day's pay for the average Mexican, the only people seeing these movies are educated elites who already know the government is corrupt.

In order for true change to come about, the non-movie-going masses will have to be educated and mobilized. Unfortunately, these are the very people who are struggling to make a living, and thus have more to worry about than the state of affairs of the government. When the average Mexican begins to parody the government in public, then the PRI will have something to worry about.

Bradford Price, Huntington, W.Va.

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