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Respecting Dignity Is Always the 'Right Thing'

August 29, 2004

Re "Seeking Freedom From Label at Last," Aug. 23: I am impressed by Fred Boyce's perspectives regarding his experience as an institutionalized youth and the stigma and limitations he has lived with since. How many of us today would be so measured in our views if, as children, we were denied an education and forced to work and live in an atmosphere of complete control, topped off by "rewards" of radioactive oatmeal for good behavior?

Perhaps the most important lesson from his experience is to realize that there are practices in place today that may be viewed with just as much horror 50 years from now. The human quest for dignity is immutable and something I believe we don't always consider sufficiently in our efforts to do "the right thing" relative to fellow human beings who may be different from us or have different experiences.

Vicki Edwards

Reseda

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