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Letters to the Editor: Oct 24 - 31

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Dissecting "Bodies"

I very much appreciated Bill O'Driscoll's review of the Bodies exhibit at the Carnegie Science Center [Oct. 10]. He seems to be one of the few independent thinkers reviewing this exhibit.

In the 1990s, I worked in Chengu, China, for the British Council teaching English. It was a regular occurrence to see men -- termed "hooligans" -- paraded through the streets on flatbed trucks with shaved heads and signs around their necks. My Chinese friends told of being forced to attend executions carried out in stadiums, and of innocent men often being arrested in order to meet quotas. I saw photos of the executed posted publicly.

In all of their gushing excitement, the Carnegie's curators seem to have quelled any personal dilemma about where these bodies came from. It doesn't seem to matter now that the deed is done -- it's all so thrilling.

China invests billions in a maintaining a glossy veneer, but it still doesn't give its citizens clean drinking water -- even in Beijing. AIDS is rampant, as is cancer-causing pollution. What a double coup for China to make more money -- with the Carnegie's assistance -- while further intimidating and shaming its poor and powerless. I believe in a free-market economy, but there are still some things that turn my stomach -- and I don't need to see a 3-D representation to know where mine is.

Thank you for airing both pro and con opinions. If my Chinese friends could thank you, through their tears they would.

-- Annette Dietz, Churchill

Kudos on your article about Bodies! I've spent two-plus years trying to explain to people what is so wrong about the exhibit (everything, really) and it heartens me to see others doing the same in such an eloquent manner. 

Anyone who feels the same way can join me on the Anti-Bodies Virtual Picket Line at: http://mysite.verizon.net/vzexqyla/anti-bodies-virtual-picket-line/.

 

-- Elaine Catz, Greenfield

The writer resigned from her job at the Carnegie Science Center earlier this year in opposition to the Bodies exhibit.

Straw-man argument

Molly Johnson thinks that by working as a man, the transgendered woman Jessi Seams is "being a hypocrite -- which is quite typical of men" [Letters, Oct. 10].

Knock off the male-bashing. Being female (or male) does not automatically make one an honorable person.

Nor does working as a man, while identifying as a woman, automatically make one a hypocrite. How much about Ms. Seams' situation do we know? Why has she apparently chosen to avoid harassment and discrimination in this way? Would she have chosen a different way in an area less socially conservative than Western Pennsylvania?

-- David V. Matthews, Aliquippa

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