A teen speaks at a townhall meeting in a scene from the movie, "Bully." (The Weinstein Co. )
Rated S for stupid
Re "Calls grow to revamp movie ratings," March 17
Congress has better things to do than get involved in movie ratings. As you write: "Two dozen members of Congress— mostly Democrats, though the list includes Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.)— have signed a letter to the MPAA complaining about the'Bully' rating."
Our nation suffers from endless wars, high unemployment, uneven and unfair taxation, a bleak future for the younger generation and hundreds of other serious problems. Can't parents and the movie studios settle their own problems?
We'd be better off if unpaid volunteers were elected to the Senate and House and those representatives only passed laws when the nation needed them.
Oh Congress, pay no attention to what we might actually need. Concentrate your efforts on movie
Both parties are beyond help; they have decided to spend time fighting and changing things that don't even begin to help most of us just plain live.
Anne Wimberley Robinson
Ironic, isn't it, that an R rating for the documentary "Bully" may intimidate the very audience the film is designed to protect from watching it.
I'm a frequent movie-goer, and I often see teenagers — sometimes in big groups — in theaters even if the movie is rated R.
Any teenager with Internet access and a credit card can buy tickets online. Most of the ticket takers I see barely make eye contact. With the crowds of people walking by them, I doubt they'd ever stop someone and ask for ID.
If teenagers want to watch a movie, they'll watch the movie. I don't think there will be fewer because it's rated R. If fewer people see "Bully," it will be because most teenagers are more interested in seeing a blockbuster than a documentary.
It's not the card but what it says
Re "Business cards get filed under 'obsolete,'" March 16
A reader of your article might conclude that the sole purpose of passing out a card is to convey one's contact information.
To this graphic designer, however, a business card serves other purposes too. Handing out a business card is a great opportunity to make a strong visual impression of one's organization.
A striking business card seldom fails to make a positive impression.
While reading your piece on the obsolescence of business cards, I was reminded of a recent incident: Having arrived, as requested, 15 minutes early for a medical appointment, I was told several times that the wait would be "just a few more minutes." After an hour, I was so angry I couldn't see straight. (This was unfortunate because I was there for a 10-minute visual field test.)
I left the building, but on my heels came the supervisor, who looked me in the eye, apologized and handed me her business card. "If it ever happens again," she said, "please alert me."
Along with the faint whiff of pre-digital social grace, she seemed to be offering a bit of hope, and she was somehow willing, with a 2-by-3.5-inch bit of card stock, to stand by her word.
It helped diffuse my rage and reminded me to behave with a measure of patience, compassion and civility. Is this not the whole point of civilization? That, and reasonable access to healthcare?
It may be the last business card I ever get. I'm going to hang on to it.
Re "Goldman culture is blasted by an insider," March 15
In the midst of the brouhaha involving Goldman Sachs, another group seems to go unscathed: career coaches.
These people seem to be saying the same thing: that former Goldman employee Greg Smith acted hastily, burned his bridges, has no place in the financial system anymore and — bottom line — shouldn't have done what he did in publishing his concerns.
I don't know what Smith's motivations were, but it seems clear that "professional" advisors have no moral compass, just job-seeking advice.
Shame on them. Sometimes it's just about doing the right thing.
Lon M. Burns
In defense of Medicare
Re "GOP is back with a revised Medicare overhaul," March 17
Let's remember that Republicans were against Medicare when it was established in 1965, and they've been opposed to it ever since.
Let's also remember that the payroll tax we pay 45 years later is 1.45% despite the fact that for years medical costs have risen much more.
Couple that with the shifting demographic of retiring baby boomers and the fact that Medicare paid for the healthcare of a generation of Americans who paid relatively little into the system, and is there any doubt as to why the system is in trouble?