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LETTERS

Naked truths

February 15, 2004

I appreciated many of the comments made in David Shaw's column ("We Are Locked and Loaded for Bare -- One More Time," Feb. 8).

As a mom and a person who spends a lot of time volunteering with teens, I am concerned about the lowering by degrees of what is acceptable in the public arena. It is a cheapening of the culture and a perverse insistence on debasement.

I thought the bare breast display was tasteless, but what upset me more (I saw this in the company of about 45 teens gathered for a Super Bowl party) was that the breast was not bared by Ms. Jackson but that her clothing was torn from her. When Justin Timberlake tore the portion of her costume away, her reaction was that of a victim. Not a message I want for my boys or my girls. I might have felt better had she slugged him.

We have allowed this junk to gradually invade public television with the excuse that kids can see as much in the movies or on the Internet. I am not an advocate of censorship, but there should be some outlets where parents don't have to be on constant alert.

Jennie Key

Cincinnati

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Had Justin just said "Does that thing have a Hemi?" everyone would have assumed it was a commercial, and therefore acceptable -- at least by the standards set by the earlier Super Bowl commercials.

Larry Maxcy

Yucca Valley

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Thanks to David Shaw for bringing some sanity to this subject. I wonder how National Geographic got away with exposing so many breasts to so many innocent kids.

Lionel Cutliff

Los Angeles

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