Congratulations to Peter Newman on his signed editorial, Making Abortion An Accepted Right Of Women (February). It’s time we had a little honesty and fairness on this matter. With nearly 19,000 legal abortions last year and an estimated 100,000 illegal ones, it’s time we recognized that the present law makes for terrible discrimination between women who have money and those who don’t, between women living where hospital authorities permit abortions and those who don’t, between women living in large cities where there are facilities for abortion and those who don’t. The proper large-scale alternative to abortion is, of course, contraception responsibly practised. Those who oppose abortion would do well to turn their energies to reducing the need for it by initiating campaigns of effective birth control and sex education. But abortion in some measure will still be needed. Abortion is already an established practice. To pretend otherwise is sheer refusal to look at the facts. To continue to oppose taking abortion from the Criminal Code is to insist on rank injustice and discrimination of the most disgusting kind. GRACE MACINNIS, HOUSE OF COMMONS, OTTAWA MP, VANCOUVER KINGSWAY I found your February editorial to be entirely lacking in balance. Normally, I would expect the next issue of Maclean ’s to present the other side of the abortion picture and thus facilitate an objective evaluation by thoughtful and concerned Canadians. In presenting such an editorial, it would be appropriate for the title to read Making Life An Accepted Right Of Innocent Children. Your attempt to enhance the views expressed in the editorial by acclaiming the “courage of Beauvoir" (Madame or Mademoiselle Simone de Beauvoir) suggests that an objective presentation in the next issue may indeed be difficult. Unless such a presentation is made, however, your right to proclaim “Canada’s National Magazine” on your masthead must be challenged. A pro-abortion position is not consistent with the views of the majority of Canadians. MAJOR JOHN J. H. CONNORS (RET.), PRESIDENT, CATHOLIC HOSPITAL ASSOCIATION OF CANADA. WINNIPEG You are to be congratulated for your excellent editorial. In addition to the groups mentioned, the Canadian Federation of University Women (of which I am an executive member) passed a resolution at its triennial conference in 1970 asking parliament to remove the sections pertaining to abortion from the Criminal Code, and to recommend legislation providing penalties for unqualified persons performing abortions. Canada does not yet have a population policy as a base for long-term social and economic planning. It does not have adequate facilities for universal birth-control education with which to implement a voluntary population-control program. If parliament had settled the abortion question with enlightened legislation in 1969, it could now be thinking about constructive goals in the areas of human reproduction, resource consumption and the awesome future of a society in upheaval. Dear Editor, please keep asking for courageous leadership! There are many of us who will support it. VIRGINIA ATKINS, DON MILLS, ONT. Keep it warm Selling Today What We’ll Need Tomorrow by J. Tuzo Wilson (March) was excellent. But please keep the heat on. As Wilson says, it will be difficult just to make the mass of Canadians aware of the issue, much less change popular opinion. Canadian resources must be conserved for Canadians! JOHN I. BRUCATO, NIAGARA FALLS, ONT. Thank you for stating so clearly the Canadian case for our fast-dwindling energy resources — Selling Today What We’ll Need Tomorrow by J. Tuzo Wilson (March). Years ago General McNaughton tried to tell us we were selling out cheap on the Columbia River. Various interests saw only the quick-money return and, sure enough, we were taken. We are now trying to renegotiate that treaty with the U.S. We have been told that, despite a large degree of foreign ownership, we still control our own resources. But do we? Canadians should let their opinions be known or our pipelines will be drained dry in short order. P. L. GRANT, CALGARY I thank God we have men like J. Tuzo Wilson — Selling Today What We’ll Need Tomorrow (Marth) — who bring home to us what lies ahead for us all unless we recognize the dangers in time, and do something about saving our precious resources. MABEL SAUNDERS, OSHAWA, ONT. Uncensored While I am in total agreement with John Hofsess’ stand on censorship — Our Right To Be Affronted (Films, March) —I was disappointed that he seemed to be unaware of the situation in Manitoba. As of October 15, 1972, film censorship ceased in Manitoba. It was replaced by a film classification board whose work it is to do the very things Mr. Hofsess advocates. We have a system of four classifications for all films entering Manitoba; the content of the films and the reason for their classification is described in a weekly column we prepare for the Winnipeg papers. Both papers are running the columns as a public service without charge, and the response to them has been favorable from both the general public and the film industry. There is no censorship or cutting of any films submitted to our board. It is my belief that the NDP government of Manitoba has taken a great step forward by establishing this new system of classification. Let me assure you that Last Tango In Paris will be shown intact in Manitoba. JOHN J. PUNGENTE, CHAIRMAN, MANITOBA FILM CLASSIFICATION BOARD, WINNIPEG I quite often disagree with the opinions of your film critic, John Hofsess. However, I agree wholeheartedly with the stand he has taken in Our Right To Be Affronted. There is nothing more frustrating — and insulting — than to go to a movie only to find that it has been cut to pieces by someone who does not understand the director’s intent or the purpose of the film. By the way, the Losey film referred to is These Are The Damned. Village Of The Damned is an entirely different type of film, directed by Wolf Rilla. KENNETH GODWIN, NEEPAWA, MAN. The French connection I’ll bet dollars to doughnuts that Claude Lemelin is French. His reference to opponents of bilingualism as “weak links” — The View From Ottawa (March) — gives him away, because the French always think that anyone who does not go whole hog for this farce of bilingualism is a bigot. I have watched what is happening here in our area and I can tell you that, when the French are in the majority, there is no bilingualism; it’s French all the way. Surely the Liberal Party would not be so foolish as to go to the voters again without calling a leadership convention, and soon. M. CUNNINGHAM, MONCTON, NB Human alternatives I can’t decide whether A Human Alternative To The Big House by George Woodcock (March) was written with tongue in cheek or not. If not, I suggest that the author is himself in need of some form of institutional treatment. The article dripped with sickening commiseration for the lovable thugs and hoodlums who prey on society, but it contained no word of sympathy for their victims. I hope the author gets severely mugged in the near future and that his rose-colored glasses get broken in the encounter! IVOR C. GUEST, BEAVERLODGE, ALTA. Thank you for Past Perfect by Freddie Bruser Maynard and for George Woodcock’s article on our prison system. I consider George to be one of the great men of our time. His deep respect for life and his love for humanity shines through everything he writes. As for Freddie Maynard’s description of growing up on the prairies, she has spoken most eloquently for me and for many others who were hatched and reared on the prairies during the pioneering, preelectronic era. PAUL LeBARON, QUALICUM BEACH, BC I enjoyed those few moments of introspection — Past Perfect by Freddie Bruser Maynard (March). I, too, lived in Saskatchewan as a young woman in 1937, when things were rough but life was still worth living. What a shame we ' parents lost that world for ourselves, and took it away from our children by taking away what we thought would be hardship. We replaced it with an artificial happiness, and the tension and pressure to excel in everything. No wonder the young are forming communes of sharing, wearing patched clothes. They are looking for what cannot be regained: a lost childhood, a time to grow up, using their imaginations to live with what is at hand. MRS. THELMA LOVEDAY, LONDON, ONT. Calèche Gentle Editor: Every now and again Maclean’s comes across and publishes a truly down-to-earth, natural and human piece of journalism. And there it is for all to enjoy — Confessions Of A Calèche Driver by Jacques Grenier (February). It’s for these rare flashes of goodness that I continue to buy Maclean’s. JOSEPH PARADIS, TORONTO Which way is West? Re: Of The Farm. Heather Robertson. February issue. Come on Maclean’s. Fun is fun, but this girl’s articles are getting to be plumb ridiculous. Quote. “The land here is sensual, female, a great pregnant belly rolling away to a horizon of breasts and buttocks and thighs and lips, round and smooth and full of surprising creases and crevasses thatched here and there with dark clusters of willow trees.” How about that! All that around and us farm boys used to head for town come a Saturday night. Two bucks stuffed in the hip pocket of our jeans and what we had stuffed in front was our own business. I know we are supposed to take the dear greenhorn all serious-like but, oh hell — sour cows and lopping grain and pottering men on one-eyed dragons? Sure a good thing she stuck to Saskatchewan and never got out here to Alberta when we start rounding up the muskegs and branding the chinooks. Why, a gory sight like that would shock her to the soles of her city boots! T. R. STEEDMAN, EDMONTON I have been reading with some amusement the replies of those who have come to the rescue of Mrs. Clarkson as a result of the article by Melinda McCracken, those Toronto imperialists (cultural, economic, what have you) whose same sort of lifestyle was satirized in the article. I thought it was a beautifully subtle rip-off of the typical eastern self-annointed cultural jet set; the TV imperialists who are thrust down our throats daily from Toronto. But now, Easterners, have you read the story on the Taylor family in Landis, Saskatchewan, by another of those “obscure little lady columnists from the Prairies” (G. Bruce Marsh’s words)? The stark contrast of the lifestyles, values and concerns of the people involved in the two articles is really what it’s all about. Wasn’t it Twain who said that it was not rural Americans who were parochial, but New Yorkers? Couldn’t the same be said of Torontonians? I hope you will continue to accept perceptive, warm, human-interest articles from that obscure little lady columnist from the Prairies, and I fervently hope that she never ever becomes a prominent Toronto columnist or broadcaster. PATRICK D. FERG, FLIN FLON, MAN. The ladies of Leeds Why did Madeleine Gobeil go over to Paris to interview a dreary old lady who looks years older than her probable age — No Exit (March) — when she could have come down to Leeds County and met older women who still appear youthful and attractive and are full of pep? Mademoiselle Gobeil is quite young, so she does not realize what a depressing effect this article may have on many older women. Simone de Beauvoir has the odd Victorian idea that women over 50 should wear no makeup, not try to be feminine, but slide down gracelessly into dull, dismal old age. If Madeleine Gobeil will interview some smart, youthful-looking older women in Canada she will produce a much more interesting article. EVELYN PURVIS EARLE, GANANOQUE, ONT. Correction A number of readers have written to correct two errors which appeared in our February music column, Any More Messages Maestro? by Roy MacGregor. An overzealous editor mistakenly amended Mr. MacGregor’s reference to the rock opera Tommy, released by the Who of Britain and not by Winnipeg’s Guess Who, as stated in the column. And Mr. MacGregor’s criticism of Joni Mitchell’s “last” album, Blue, was the unfortunate victim of Maclean’s long lead time; by the time the column appeared, Joni Mitchell had released a more recent album, For The Roses. The responsibility for both errors is Maclean’s, and we extend our sincere apologies to Mr. MacGregor for any embarrassment we may have caused him. How to go, where to stay Future transAtlantic air fares, at this writing, are waiting for government approval. Agents at CP Air, which flies from Montreal to Madrid via Lisbon, think the following figures should hold up. For a 14-to-45-day excursion, Vancouver to Madrid return, $349 in the shoulder season (April, May, September, October), $419 high season; Toronto to Madrid $258 and $327; Montreal to Madrid $239 and $309.