A discreet press, a discreet public

Once again we read that the public didn't know that President Franklin Roosevelt was immobile, used a wheelchair, had leg braces ("Patient's Privacy vs. public's right to know," July 2).

We all knew that he couldn't walk. He was the poster boy for the March of Dimes. We children went door to door every year, collecting dimes for polio treatment and research.

We knew that his wife, Eleanor, went about the country as his eyes and ears and legs. His statue, seated with braces, shows reality, not a secret. People admired him during campaigns and in office, for showing that polio couldn't stop the mind and the spirit.

Please, young writers, do not assume that we did not know about FDR's polio. We did. We just didn't have the peek-and-leak, 24-hour TV coverage. We had a discreet press and no TV.

Ann Bovbjerg Iowa City, Iowa

Unfair digs on Bush

Regarding Daniel Schorr's July 6 column, "Our agile, flip-flopping president": President Bush has not inherited the country in the same condition it was in during the long months of his campaign. The boom has busted, and employment is down.

Mr. Bush campaigned for "consensus" and promised to work with Congress so the country could be governed. He seems to be doing just that.

Gertrude Shepherd Ithaca, N.Y.

Finer points of Macedonian history

Please let me point out to your readers the following factual errors I found in John K. Cooley's article "Move fast to help Macedonia" (opinion page, June 29):

1. Macedonia used to be one of the republics constituting the former Yugoslav Federation, not a province as stated in the article.The recent history has showed this to be of crucial importance, because the republics, unlike the provinces such as Kosovo, had the right of separation from the federation.

2. Although many will agree that the ethnic Macedonians are of Slavic decent, Macedonian, not "Slav Macedonian," is the designation for both the nationality and the ethnicity of the majority of the Macedonia's citizens.The Macedonians find the term "Slav Macedonian" offending, because it has been designed to negate their existence as separate nation andculture.

3. The population of Republic of Macedonia is a little bit more than 2 million, not 2.5 million as stated in Mr. Cooley's article.According to the official census results, 23 percent not 30 percent of Macedonia's citizens are ethnic Albanians.

Luben Todorovski Voorhees, N.J.

A rib to pick

I am an employee with Jack Stack BBQ in Kansas City, Mo. I read your article the other day on the best BBQ in Kansas City ("Where they love to lick their fingers," June 13). Of all the mentions of restaurants in the Kansas City area, Jack Stack was left off of your list. I'd like to bring to your attention a few facts:

In the Aug. 1 issue of The Best of Kansas City magazine, Jack Stack was not only voted best overall BBQ in Kansas City, but it took best pork spare ribs, best burnt beef ends, best beans, and best combo sandwich.

I'm proud of the company I work for and am disappointed in the lack of detail and research that went into the writing of this article.

Any person in Kansas City knows Jack Stack, and any person visiting Kansas City would miss out if they never made it to Jack Stack BBQ.

George Koepp Kansas City, Mo.

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