A level playing field for women and girls?

As a grandmother of eight grandchildren, four boys and four girls, I read with interest 'A family who cries 'foul' '' (Oct. 24) about Title IX funding for school sports. Although participation in sports by high school girls has increased, girls still get "second-string" treatment. One girl's softball team practices at a school a few miles from their own high school on a field described as having "dips." The fence is falling apart. There are weeds everywhere. The boy's field, on the other hand, has dugouts, a locker room, weight room, and electronic scoreboard. If Title IX decreed that in cases such as this the boys and girls would swap facilities until the inequalities were rectified, wouldn't improvements be made much faster?

Lee Purcell Jackson, Miss.

In response to "Lawsuits tee off against male golf clubs" (Oct. 16), I see women's objections to men-only golf clubs, such as Southern Dunes, as silly. Women want equal rights and the privilege of exclusion (women's colleges, for example), yet they claim it is wrong when men want to be exclusive. When women give up their exclusive athletic clubs and colleges, perhaps men will give up their exclusive golf clubs.

Glenn Cato Pasadena, Calif.

Debate over foreign policy needed

Your Oct. 26 editorial, "Hitting a new political stride," is right on target. A new political stride is badly needed. We were shut out of vigorous debate before the November election. We must not be shut out of the necessary but still missing debate now over what our foreign policy should be and what is missing that resulted in the September attacks on our complacency.

Jean Snyder Greenbelt, Md.

Now is a good time to give up SUVs

I was appalled to read the comments of an SUV owner in "For good news, getting better, fill your car" (Oct. 29). Americans' love affair with grossly fuel-inefficient vehicles is one of the reasons we are in this mess in the Middle East, not to mention the effect on the earth's resources. We would do our country, as well as the planet, a great service by buying fuel-efficient vehicles and demanding development of alternatives to gasoline-powered engines.

Jennifer Goldberg Chatham, Mass.

Blame the record companies

In response to "In Napster-less world, plenty of other options" (Oct. 22): It is my opinion that the record companies have brought this on themselves by keeping CDs at ridiculously high prices. They think that the public is just a bunch of naive consumers who don't have an approximate idea of what the cost of production for a CD is. If the record companies want to protect their copyrights, they should cut prices to one-third of the current retail price. If they did, I believe the public would stop downloading.

Tom Strauss Denver, Colo.

I believe it is the actions of the record labels that have contributed to the web of hostility toward paying them. If they really want to do right by the artists, I suggest that they:

1. Put CD singles of popular songs out right away instead of waiting years to do so.

2. Make public exactly how much of each CD's price will go directly to the artist.

3. Stop aggressive copyright law enforcement.

I have never taken a song off the Internet in any form. But, for the reasons listed above, I maintain that the music labels have been the most effective builders of the case for Internet downloading.

Dan Lozer Elk Point, S.D.

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