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Apartheid and Promoting Tourism in South Africa

September 17, 1988

In response to your article "South Africa Lures Tourists Amid Racial Unrest," by Scott Kraft, Part I, Sept. 7:

Jerry and Kay Kushins' friends in Walnut Creek may call them brave for visiting South Africa, but I find their actions indefensible and morally reprehensible. While they indulge themselves with fine meals and beautiful views of the Indian Ocean, their dollars are put to work propping up South Africa's notorious brand of legally institutionalized racism.

They are quoted as saying that they didn't think they "really knew what apartheid was" prior to their trip. Blacks in South Africa are therefore forced to pay for their ignorance, because the money spent in their country is used by the Pretoria regime in efforts to postpone the complete dismantling of apartheid.

They appear surprised by the levels of "integration" evidenced by black and white children playing together. I doubt that their tour guide felt the inclination to show them sights like the sprawling black townships or rural "homelands" that reveal the reality of South Africa: the continued underdevelopment and disenfranchisement of the nation's majority. Their money helps perpetuate that system. No wonder that Pretoria actively recruits foreign tourism.

They state that they intend to encourage friends to vacation in South Africa. I hope their friends have the intelligence to ignore their wishes and spend their vacation dollars elsewhere.

MITCH NORTON

Los Angeles

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