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The whole of Europe has heaved a sigh of relief because of Jeffords' brave decision. We were beginning to get frightened of what the cold-war-revival government was going to do next. Surely most of the decisions of the Bush Administration cannot be supported by a majority of American citizens. Here in Germany we are very happy to see that a government which was elected by accident has been forced into compromising. SILKE FELGENTREU Hamburg, Germany
May I be the first to nominate Senator Jeffords to be the next head chiseled onto the face of Mount Rushmore? By his simple act of conscience, Jeffords has saved the country from four (possibly eight!) years of compassionate conservatism and its attendant despoilment of our environment. DAVID I. EPSTEIN Albuquerque, N.M.
Jeffords' decision was his disgrace. This "stern, quiet man" betrayed his party and deliberately upset the power structure for his own aggrandizement and vindictiveness. DOROTHY PERMENTER Jacksonville, Fla.
--Taking a look at our June 4 issue--and rejecting it at face value, shall we say--more than a handful of you thought we should have covered it differently. "While it may be true that it was President Bush who got whacked," an admirer of Senator Jeffords willingly conceded, "we in Vermont deserved a cover photo of Jim." A like-minded Virginian argued, "The real newsmaker and man of courage and character is Jim Jeffords, and he should have had top billing in this circus." "Bush is the one who didn't do anything that week," agreed a citizen of the President's home state. But a reader in California saw things in an unusual light: "Your brilliant cover speaks a thousand words, and then some. The President beams confidence through his eyes and exudes a calming comfort despite his Administration's newfound challenges."
Our reporting incorrectly stated that Jeffords announced his departure from the Republican Party in Montpelier, Vt. The press conference was in fact held in Burlington, Vt. The statement that most Vermont residents are registered as Independents was also incorrect; there is no party registration in Vermont. Our information on voter preference was based on opinion surveys. We regret the errors.
Now that it's the Hispanics' turn to complain about how little time they get on TV shows [TELEVISION, May 28], it's clear that the idealistic notion of America as a great melting pot is nothing short of fantasy. However, talented Hispanics are indeed represented in Hollywood, not because they're Hispanic but because they're talented. Edward James Olmos, Salma Hayek, Christina Aguilera and Ricky Martin are only a few of the Hispanic performers who have found a place within mainstream American show business. Protesting Hispanics have to face the fact that racial quotas are dangerous in any form. They exclude others simply on the basis of race. And isn't that the root of racism? Wouldn't it be better for everyone if we had color-blind television instead? ARTURO AYALA MARGAIN Mexico City
Down with the Death Penalty