Letters to the Editor

Readers write about youth of all races, censorship and the US government, sports to cure Britain's obesity, and fees for customer service calls.

Youth of all races need to be shown better cultural options

In response to Bill Cosby and Alvin Poussaint's Nov. 8 Opinion piece, "Blacks must drop victimhood and reclaim dignity": Frankly, all of society needs a good kick in the pants.

Too many young people – black, white, or otherwise – emulate what former generations considered rude thugs. They have no desire to work hard since the world owes them a living. Their resulting plight, of course, is someone else's fault. Society suffers as does our country.

Part of the problem, I think, is that the only exposure people, especially young people, get today is what they are very selectively fed from the television, movie, and music industries. This is all money-driven, I must add. We have to find a way to broaden the vision of this new generation and help them explore cultural options, besides the negative ones that surround them now. If they don't know something better is out there, how can they aspire to it?

I have always been a big fan of Mr. Cosby and I admire him enormously, especially for sticking his politically incorrect neck out.

Why would he and Dr. Poussaint suggest such a scary thing?

Maybe because they care.

Bethel, Conn.

Censorship from the US government

In response to Tariq Ramadan's Oct. 31 Opinion article, "The US blacklisted me. Let's talk.": Americans have to know the amount of "censoring" being practiced by our government.

It is determined to paint all Muslims as bad and to keep negative information about Israel from the mainstream media. Thanks for this real journalism.

Nicole Kaghat
Newtown, Conn.

A solution to Britain's obesity? Sports.

Regarding the Oct. 25 article, "Britain cooks up new action plan for rising obesity": The article should have included some reference to government initiatives to support sports in British schools. The national curriculum currently provides school-children with two hours of sports per week. Education ministers want to increase that to five hours per week for each student. Everyone in Britain loves watching sports and discussing sports.

What's needed is greater participation in sports. For this to be achieved, there needs to be progress in three areas: provision of well-equipped sports facilities in schools and local communities, availability of qualified coaches, access to a wide range of sports. These improvements would help Britain shift from a sports-watching culture to a sports-participating culture.

Alistair Budd

'No' to extra charge for calls

In the Nov. 2 Opinion piece by Donald Boudreaux, " 'Your call is very important to us...' ":Mr. Boudreaux asks, "Why is it worse for an airline to make money from customers' desire for quick help on the telephone than to make money by flying them to a distant city?"

Two reasons: 1) If there is a profit to be made from charging a customer to "fix" a situation of the airline's own creation (i.e., insufficient call-center staff), there is no financial incentive to improve the situation; and, 2) I can't think of a person who would think it fair to earn a profit off of someone else's negligence, carelessness, or just plain indifference. The reason you are on hold in the first place is that the company's service is lacking – unless, of course, its business consists of answering the phone.

Jerry Baker
Los Angeles

The Monitor welcomes your letters and opinion articles. Because of the volume of mail we receive, we can neither acknowledge nor return unpublished submissions. All submissions are subject to editing. Letters must be signed and include your mailing address and telephone number. Any letter accepted may appear in print or on our website, www.csmonitor.com. Mail letters to Readers Write and Opinion pieces to Opinion Page, One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115. E-mail letters to Letters and Opinion pieces to OpEd.

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