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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Disrespecting Geronimo?; UC tuition debate; safety for miners

May 12, 2011
  • Geronimo: The famed warrior in an 1887 photo. (National Archives)
Geronimo: The famed warrior in an 1887 photo. (National Archives)

What's in a name

Re "Dishonored," Opinion, May 10

Karl Jacoby's general issue with how Americans do not fully grasp our Native American past is true in many respects, but I did not take the military code-name "Geronimo" as denigrating to the Apache leader.

Quite the contrary. Whether we were playing games as kids or riding a roller-

coaster, to yell out "Geronimo" was something of a war cry, a battle yell — shouting the name of that brave warrior to provide adrenaline and courage.

When we were about to jump off the high-diving board, we yelled "Geronimo!" all the way down. I never heard anyone yell "George Washington!" or "Dwight D. Eisenhower!" Geronimo was our guy: brave, courageous, steadfast and great of heart. I don't think there was ever an intention to demean his great spirit.

Jack Grapes

Los Angeles

I knew some people might object to the use of "Geronimo" as a military codeword. I realize political correctness is in vogue. But to read a professor writing that the military compared Geronimo with Bin Laden is laughable. It's just a codeword.

As for the military helicopters he mentions that have Indian names (like Apache): Does the professor really think these helicopters were named to denigrate Indians?

Robert Newman

West Hills

Tussling over UC tuition

Re "UC tuition could differ by campus," May 9

I cannot blame the University of California for seeking new sources of revenue. But creating a hierarchy of campuses would be a mistake.

A better solution would be to vary instruction fees horizontally within each campus.

UC should explore assessing higher fees for classes that are more resource-intensive. For example, science and engineering students who spend much of their time working with expensive lab equipment cost significantly more to educate than social science students like myself, whose major instructional expense stems from faculty salaries.

Barring a magical restoration of state funding, it's not unreasonable to expect more expensive students to pay their fair share.

Nick Matthews

Los Angeles

More "business model" baloney. The outrageous proposal to allow each UC campus to become its own "profit center" will put another nail in the coffin of our great Master Plan for Higher Education. The Board of Regents should not allow it.

Profit-sharing, not competition, keeps California's multitiered public education structure strong, even in hard times.

Frances O'Neill Zimmerman

La Jolla

Letting down the miners

Re "Miners' survivors feel let down," May 8

Lobbyists for the energy and mining industry have captured a controlling minority of Congress. The industry would rather spend millions on slick lobbyists and campaign contributions than hundreds of millions complying with safety and environmental laws.

They also lavish spending on mass-media campaigns designed to foster the illusion that burning coal is safe and necessary. The only solution is to accept the economic upheavals that will accompany the growth and eventual dominance of renewable energy sources, thus making coal mining a dying profession instead of an occupation of death.

Marvin J. Wolf

Mar Vista Heights

Oddly enough, not touched on in this extensive article or in the chart showing the apparent influence of industry contributions on votes against the miners safety bill was what the chart did show so glaringly and unambiguously: Not one single House Republican voted in favor of the mine safety bill.

If the miners' survivors feel let down, there is only one response: It's the GOP.

Alice P. Neuhauser

Manhattan Beach

Missing a hoops father figure?

Re "So long, Zen master," Editorial, May 10

I disagree with The Times' statement: "The less said the better about the team's cheap-shot fouls." It appears that everyone has missed the point. Phil Jackson is the greatest coach in NBA history and has brought tremendous pride and joy to Lakers fans.

All the players were aware that Sunday's game would probably be Jackson's last as head coach. These are highly paid professional athletes, and they are expected to conduct themselves accordingly. The actions displayed in the last minutes of the game were ultimate acts of disrespect to the man, the coach and the Zen master, and we should all be ashamed.

Gene E. Schwartz

San Diego

As a psycho Lakers fan, but also a licensed psychotherapist, I wonder if the Lakers were unconsciously "acting out" their sense of loss about playing next season without Jackson. When dad leaves, the kids feel abandoned and all hell breaks loose.

Here's hoping they get some help and work it out.

Ellen Butterfield

Studio City

His Edge

Re "U2 guitarist's money wins," Column, May 8

I first became aware of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy in the 1980s, and since then I have watched in amazement as it has created vast parkland and miles of trails.

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