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Published: Friday, 5/4/2001

Gender studies a dynamic academic field

I invite the reader who thinks the UT Women's and Gender Studies Department is devoted to propaganda and indoctrination to visit our classes and discover for himself what goes on in them. He will gain insight from and perhaps enjoy contact with the students and professors in this dynamic area of academic study.

His association of feminism with racism is an unfortunate misunderstanding. Unlike racism, which is hatred of a group based on race, feminism is devoted to gaining equality and liberty for half of the people on the earth.

In the academic setting, women's and gender studies scholarship reclaims, interprets, and celebrates the contributions, history, and experiences of women nationally and internationally.

As to the taxpayers' aspect of his argument, female taxpayers should be upset that women's and gender studies has only received public support recently. It's not as if they only started paying into the public coffers in the last 10 years.

TOM BARDEN

Associate Dean for the Humanities

College of Arts and Sciences

University of Toledo

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Dr. Paul Donohue was not completely accurate in his April 23 column's description of the progress of HIV Infection.

He is entirely correct that the initial infection appears like many other viral infections. The healthy immune system then attacks the virus and the symptoms subside. From that time until the signs of AIDS appear, the virus is not dormant, but slowly and surely destroying the ability of the immune system to protect the body against any infection. When the immune system is severely compromised, the symptoms of AIDS become obvious.

AIDS still kills, despite the latest drugs. Taking many drugs on the rigid schedule required can be a challenge for many as well, leading to reduced effectiveness.

BREN BLAINE

Executive Director

Planned Parenthood of Northwest Ohio

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The Blade account of the most recent Perrysburg School Board meeting seemed contradictory. In speaking of our current superintendent, Dr. Sharon Zimmers, board member Sue Williams said, “[She] has done an excellent job.” Then board member Walter Edinger stated that the district has a projected $2 million deficit in 2003, yet he does not want to conduct a superintendent search because he “would like to continue with the success we've had under Dr. Zimmers.”

It is now a fact that the overcrowding problem is a thing of the past due to over-inflated projection figures. Our superintendent is now proposing open enrollment to other districts to fill our classrooms and bring in additional money. Incorrect projection figures plus a projected $2 million deficit, not to mention failed levies, to me do not spell success.

The CEO of a corporation is held responsible for shortcomings; it is usually reflected in his/her bonus or the person may be eliminated from the business. Despite the shortfalls in our school district, our superintendent has been given opulent raises and bonuses.

Nothing was reported about the mother complaining that education for special-needs children in Perrysburg is lacking; let's tell the real story about what is going on in Perrysburg. Board Members John Kevern, Mr. Edinger, and Ms. Williams need to pull their heads out of their sandhills. Let's move forward with a search and not simply a committee consisting of two board members.

MARY C. CARON

Perrysburg

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The people of Ohio have spoken, and they don't want to make it easier to carry a concealed weapon in our state. According to the University of Cincinnati Institute for Policy Research, 69 percent of Ohio residents don't want gun-toting in public, with only 27 percent in favor of enacting a permissive gun-carrying law. Any politician in America knows that's equivalent to a landslide vote - except for some of our elected officials in the Buckeye State.

State Sen. Jim Jordan, who supports gun carrying in Ohio, dismisses the will of the majority: “It doesn't really bother me,” he declared when informed of the poll.

The poll can't be dismissed as a fluke, because it is consistent with ones conducted in 1995 and 1999. But that doesn't deter state Rep. Tom Brinkman, who introduced a bill that would even let criminals carry around handguns. A spokesman for the Ohio Fraternal Order of Police commented on Mr. Brinkman's bill, “We oppose convicted felons being allowed to carry concealed weapons, and that's what this amounts to.”

Meanwhile, Ohio is in the top five states that supply guns used in crimes in other states. Why aren't Senator Jordan and Representative Brinkman working on bills to make sure guns don't get into the hands of criminals?

It appears that some Ohio legislators not only are willing to defy the will of the people, they are also willing to sacrifice our public safety and throw common sense out the window.

If a Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) bill passes in our state, the next step will be a referendum in 2002. Then our legislators will be forced to listen to what Ohio voters have to say.

TOBY HOOVER

Director

Ohio Coalition Against Gun Violence

Floyd Street

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After the Toledo School Board and the teachers union are done patting each other on the back, maybe they should be patting their wallets to see where the money is going to come from.

By the way, how much does it cost per student to be schooled in Toledo Public Schools? Would it not be cheaper to send them all to private schools?

When the district next asks for more money, and it will, hold the election on a Thursday. That seems to be a good day for price increases.

TIM SCZESNY

Perrysburg

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It's the 21st century. Routine space shuttle launches. Ongoing space station construction. Portable notebook computers. Personal digital cell phones.

Yet apparently there's no one in Toledo who can figure out how to make a drawbridge go up and down with any dependability. It would be laughable if it wasn't so pathetic. Very impressive.

A.J. TSCHERNE

Oregon

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Phillip Morris' ad campaign stresses how concerned the company is about America. A few months ago, my wife and I decided to quit smoking. Because the beloved insurance will not cover the cost, even under a prescription, this is out-of-pocket money. The Patch is $50 for the starter kit and that's only for two weeks. Zy-Ban is more than $100.

On March 25, I was diagnosed with lung and brain cancer. After 47 years of smoking, I sure don't expect a trophy. I have gone through the daily radiation for 15 days and have now started on chemo. I don't care how many businesses Phillip Morris owns and how concerned they are about America! If they want to show their concern, then why don't they pick up the tab on the “stop-smoking” aids so people can stop using their product, which has killed so many over the years?

THOMAS NISCHWITZ

Pine Valley Lane

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So Arnie Elzey is up to his old tricks, threatening a lawsuit if he and his tobacco cohorts do not get their way. I also noted that he was forming a political action committee and will begin raising funds from local bar and restaurant owners.

I imagine that these will consist of such well-known bars and restaurants as the Brown and Williamson Inn, the Lorillard Supper Club, the Philip Morris Caf , and, of course, that home of fine dining, the R.J. Reynolds House of Epicurean Delights and Lung Transplant Clinic.

RICHARD W. O'BRYAN

Bowser Drive



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