LETTERS

October 17 1983

LETTERS

October 17 1983

LETTERS

Bravo, Canada 1

Well done, Canada 1! We should all be proud that a group of Canadians had the guts to challenge for the supremacy of the America’s Cup (Rallying Around Canada 1, Column, Oct. 3). They started from scratch and ended in sixth place. Terry McLaughlin ended up helping Australia II train for the match with the Americans (it paid off, they beat them). To be able to design a 12-metre, train a crew, beg for money and then end up in the quarter final—that is a superb performance. They suffered the indignity of having to set up the 12metre yacht in the Newport Shipyard (more a junkyard), away from the plush surroundings of the other competitors. They wanted to win. They should be applauded (three cheers to Peter C. Newman) and supported in their next attempt in 1987 in Perth. Maybe they will have a secret beaver keel!

—ALEX GINOU, Agincourt, Ont.

Of tolerance and integrity

Why is it, I wonder, that some people when confronted by positions at variance with their own must impute to their opponents motives that are unworthy and even antisocial? Such is the case with Bentley G. Hicks in his letter in the Sept. 26 issue of Maclean's (Religion, Aug. 22) when he states that those of us who hold a position we feel to be in conformity with the teaching of holy scripture and holy tradition (and therefore a theological consideration, not a sociological consideration) and reject the “ordination” of women are bigots,

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sexists and no better than racists. It seems impossible for Hicks to believe that there are countless numbers of people (both male and female) who are sincerely distressed for good and valid reasons that several churches of the Anglican communion have taken it upon themselves to depart from universal Catholic custom by purporting to ordain women to the priesthood. It may be of little moment to Hicks that the Orthodox, Roman Catholics and Old Catholics have rejected this innovation. But he should not try to adorn with respectability his denomination’s unCatholic actions by claiming that “such a practice is not to deny any of the fundamental tenets of Catholicism.” Such a claim in the face of clear rejection of those practices by the three major branches of the Catholic church is simply ludicrous. As a Christian, Hicks should try at least to allow for the integrity of those with whom he disagrees.

—THE VENERABLE JOSEPH P. DEYMAN, Archdeacon of the Midwest Anglican Catholic Church, Indianapolis, Ind.

Blacks in tank tops: no treat

I am amazed that you would print a blatantly racist column by Fred Bruning on Jesse Jackson’s possible presidential candidacy (Jesse Jackson has his own dream Sept. 19). Jackson’s slim chances, however, are not so much the result of Americans’ fear of the “images of U.S. cabinet members dressed in tank tops” as they are of the electorate’s terror at the prospect of some very competent black cabinet members beginning to allot the black community the fair share of the economic pie that they have obviously been denied for so long.

—DAVID PIERCE,

New York City

Sudbury’s lush greenery

Every week I read Allan Fotheringham’s column with pleasure. However, I found his comparison of all of Ontario resembling a provincewide Sudbury in the event of nuclear fallout to be in the poorest of taste (Snuggling up in 10 beds, Sept. 19). I have lived in Sudbury for the past 10 years (formerly in southern Ontario), and although a very small portion of this area is rather bleak, the greater part abounds with clean, pollution-free lakes and rivers and forests lush with greenery. Please, Allan, do not be so quick to use our fair city for your creative comparison. Think of us when you would like to have a refreshing swim and your waterfront is closed. —CHRISTINE FARNEL,

Sudbury, Ont.

As usual, I was chuckling over Allan Fotheringham’s column until he made that nasty dig about Sudbury in reference to Ontario’s official nuclear fallout shelter. We Sudburians are fed up to the teeth with disparaging remarks aimed at our community by members of the media who have not taken the time to see for themselves what Sudbury is really like. Our air pollution count is much lower than our neighbors’ down south. And there are many sparkling, clean lakes right on our doorstep. We also have lots of trees and grass and other vegetation, even on our famous rocks. If, as Fotheringham hints, the present-day Sudbury is representative of what our province might look like after nuclear fallout, then Ontarians have nothing to worry about.

—PEGGY MERTENS, Sudbury, Ont.

The wives of Juan Perón

Your article The role of the Iron Butterfly (Cover, Sept. 5) states: “Her [Imelda Marcos’] headlong rush for power at the side of a political strongman has led to inevitable comparisons with Eva Perón, the first wife of former Argentine president Juan Perón.” I would like to set the record straight. Eva Perón was Juan Perón’s second wife. Juan Perón was a widower when he married Eva Perón.

—PETER RADUKA, Milton, Ont.

Memorial’s too few freshmen

If the writer of your article Too many freshmen, too few desks (Education, Sept. 5) had realized that Canada does not extend only from British Columbia to the Maritime provinces, he might have checked with Memorial University of Newfoundland (the only non-Maritime province university in Atlantic

Canada) to find an interesting exception to the national trend of overcrowded universities. Because of the introduction of a third year in the high school program, there were no high school graduates in June, 1983, and first-year enrolment at MUN this year has dropped by more than half.

—JAMES KING, Ramea, Nfld.

Saskatchewan in the limelight

The asperity of your report on rural telephone connections in Saskatchewan was typical of the eastern xenophobia that is all too typical of your magazine (Party line revolt in Saskatchewan, Canada, Sept. 12). It leaves the distinct impression that Saskatchewan is still populated by isolated rumor-filled hamlets, outhouses, gravel roads and one-room schoolhouses. Any visitor to this province would quickly learn that the Progressive Conservative policies of Premier Grant Devine have thrust Saskatchewan into the international limelight. Perhaps that does not sit well with the mandarins on Parliament Hill or with William Davis, but the saliency is not lost on those of us who love life here. It may not be oil that the East craves from us, but perhaps the hedonistic population back there will consider our tribulations the next time they fertilize their lawns with Saskatchewan potash or make themselves a wholewheat sandwich with Saskatchewan wheat. —MICHAEL MARTIN,

Saskatoon

The reporting of the Saskatchewan party line situation was reasonable and fair. The headline, however, leaves much to be desired for accuracy and professional good judgment. A “revolt”? Now, really. Fortunately, the story discredits the headline. Unfortunately, the head also discredits the correspondent in the eyes of many lay readers who believe reporters or correspondents also write the heads on their stories. —H. JAMES OSBORNE,

Assistant Vice-President, Public Affairs, Saskatchewan Telecommunications,

Regina

When English becomes illegal

I have been following the debate regarding French-language rights in Manitoba. I am amazed at the support that has been given by the federal government in Ottawa toward advancing the cause of French-speaking Canadians in that province. During the past several years the federal government has said nothing while the language rights of more than 800,000 Englishspeaking Quebecers have been steadily

eroded. By means of Bill 101 the provincial government has made the English language virtually illegal in Quebec. Montreal was Canada’s third-largest English-speaking city in 1976, having an anglophone population of more than 600,000. As a result of the repressive language legislation of the Parti Québécois, one in seven has left the province. The hypocrisy of Prime Minister Trudeau and his henchmen does not advance the cause of either language group. While the rights of the French in other provinces have increased, the rights of the English in Quebec have been diminished. How can Franco-Manitobans expect support for their cause while the present situation exists in Quebec? -WILLIAM W. BOWNESS, Kirkland, Que.

Another final solution

I would like to ask Prof. Donald Daly (Low productivity and a recession, Letters, Aug. 22) why, if productivity is the answer to the recession, the problem has worsened over the years while productivity has increased many scores of times? If we win markets from competitors, what of our competitors’ already dwindling markets—and jobs? Higher productivity under capitalism, which limits an exploited working majority to a fraction of its product, only increases

the unsold surpluses that accumulate as a result. The real solution is bona fide socialism, wherein, through the social ownership and democratic worker control of the economy through an industrial representative government, production can be planned and directed for social use, with all workers receiving the equivalent of what they produce.

—JAMES MINAL, S. Burnaby, B.C.

Brawling illiterates on the field

Though not always a fan of Allan* Fotheringham, I am in complete agreement with his column When heroes become monsters (Sept. 26), regarding some of the brawlers and illiterates presently engaged in professional sport. Individuals like Paul Higgins (and his coach, Mike Nykoluk) do nothing to improve the situation.

—FRANK E. HEARD, Alliston, Ont.

I would like to comment on Allan Fotheringham’s column When heroes become monsters. What exactly is he trying to prove by telling everyone that Gary Anderson was illiterate and could not read at a sixth-grade level? Does this fact turn him from hero to monster? He obviously excels at what he can do, and that is play football. What a

put-down. He made Anderson sound like a useless human being. Those football teams are not paying him all that money to read. Right?

—LINDA THIVIERGE, London, Ont.

Mila’s backwoods feminism

It nearly made me ill to read Thoroughly old-fashioned Mila (Cover, Aug. 29). The example set by Mila Mulroney is a living insult to all those who have worked for women’s rights over the years. Yet it is further regrettable that you see as “political assets” the more obvious facets of Brian Mulroney’s backwoods conservatism.

—A.R. THOMAS, Sherbrooke, Que.

Reagan takes a traumatic step

I was incensed and insulted to read the snide sarcasm in your People report (Sept. 19) of President Ronald Reagan’s hearing problem. Once again, the misguided and misinformed equation of deafness with old age and incipient senility is set forth. It is thus small wonder that we hearing-impaired are treated by those who do not know us as candidates for imbecility and that we often have to face barriers of ignorance and exasperated impatience. It is a

credit to the president that he has taken the most difficult step of all—that of publicly acknowledging his problem. This is the most traumatic step of all at any age since we are all conditioned to believe, in our vanity, that visible blemishes imply mental incapacity.

—DENNIS W. HOFFMAN, Ottawa

Taking the onus off Judas

Regarding the review of A Time for Judas, by Morley Callaghan (Retelling the ultimate betrayal story, Books, Sept. 19): Callaghan argues that since Judas was a rich man’s son, he could not have been motivated to betray Jesus for 30 pieces of silver and, in addition, that since everyone knew where Jesus was, he hardly needed to have a betrayer. On the contrary, he argues, it was Jesus who solicited Judas’ betrayal in order to have the betrayal of love forever remembered with horror. One can readily understand and accept the attempt to exonerate Judas. And I am in sympathy with taking the onus off Judas and putting it where it belongs, squarely on ourselves. However, resorting to literary artifice to make a point does not, I believe, give one licence to further betray the true Jesus. Traitors within or without ourselves do not even need to be looked for, much less solicited. They abound. —LEONARD M. THORNTON,

Victoria

Christians and politics

Either Allan Fotheringham has his tongue in cheek and is out to stimulate an argument or he is abysmally ignorant of what the whole church is doing in the world when he denigrates, apparently en masse, political activities of what he calls “Protestant sects” (The politics of religion, Column, Sept. 5). He is dead right about most of the fundamentalist bodies but does less than justice to those mainline churches who have martyrs in modern South Africa, Uganda and elsewhere. Christians in their own way have been mixed up in politics down the ages. Why drive wedges between them when unified Christian action is needed? -REV. S.G. WEST,

Erin, Ont.

Foth, where are you when we need you? Your article on religious leaders meddling in politics was way off. They are entitled to their opinion, as are we all. However, due to the reverence in which they are held by their flock, their opinions carry much more weight than that of the ordinary person. Considering their unproven ability in economic and political matters, this is irresponsible.

—PAUL GARRETT, Chatham, N.B.

Soccer in ‘America’

Soccer is alive and in good health in the New World (The old game suffers in the New World, Sports, Sept. 19). It suffers in only two of the New World countries. With that kind of headline, the United States and Canada should not be surprised when the other American countries accuse them of ignoring their existence. The American continent (the New World) does not end at the Rio Grande border. —NORA V. CALP,

Kitchener, Ont.

Peoples and states coexisting

I was flabbergasted to read that the PLO had implicitly recognized Israel by voting for a resolution recognizing the right of states to an “existence within secure and internationally recognized boundaries” at a United Nations forum (The rights to coexistence, World, Sept. 19). The PLO considers Israel “the illegal Zionist entity,” not a state, and the PLO National Covenant, reaffirmed every year since the organization’s founding, explicitly denies the existence of the Jewish people, its historical roots in the area and right to a homeland, and declares the proclamation of Israel null and void. Adherence to the resolution is intended for Western public consumption. The media has an obligation to do more than simply provide an opportunity for a protagonist to state his best case without critical analysis by a re porter. — ALEXANDER BRUNER,

Toronto

It was gratifying to see coverage of the United Nations’ First Conference on Palestine and to note the growing tone of compromise exhibited by even the most traditionally obstructionist Arab regimes (The rights to coexistence). However, there is a mistaken reference in the article. It refers to Uri Avnery as “the leader of Israel’s Peace Now movement.” Avnery is not associated with Peace Now in any formal capacity whatever. Peace Now is a broad-based coalition of groups and individuals in Israel which has expressed only the most moderate and compromising of attitudes toward a peaceful solution to the regional conflict. Avnery, on the other hand, is a well-known independent publisher, journalist, politician and radical who is generally thought of as being a good deal closer to the far-left fringe than Peace Now could ever dare to be.

—ARNIE LIPSEY, Toronto

Letters are edited and may be condensed. Writers should supply name, address and telephone number. Mail correspondence to: Letters to the Editor, Maclean 's magazine, Maclean Hunter Bldg., 777 Bay St., Toronto, Ont. M5W1A7.