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Misguided Missile

January 07, 1990

I must protest your printing of the social-activist diatribe posing as literary criticism that Alejandro Morales spewed out against "The Wedding," by Mary Helen Ponce (Book Review, Nov. 19). Aside from wasting valuable space, it was cruel and irresponsible of you to allow this ethnic paranoiac to savage the efforts of a first-time novelist in such a shallow, biased and self-serving fashion. . . .

I believe that Ms. Ponce is aware of the technique of effectively ridiculing negative stereotypes by simply presenting an accurate picture of them. It removes their glamour and acceptability, something that is long overdue for the "alternative cultural expression" that is gang membership. . . .

It requires a good deal of self-respect for someone to take an honest look at themselves, good parts and bad, whether an individual or a people. A common form of self-hatred carries as its shield the demand that only good be acknowledged.

Mr. Morales proves the benefit of ridiculing negative stereotypes by doing an excellent job on himself. His review prompted me to order the book. Ten copies. Perhaps he can next turn his venom on Salmon Rushdie.

ROBERT C. HUNT

SANTA ANA

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