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To the Editor:

The survey on "Cable-Ready Classrooms'' in the April 7, 1993, issue (Dimensions) is most misleading.

Yes, cable-TV companies have placed a cable "drop'' at many schools. At my school and most with which I am familiar, this means that the drop was to the most convenient location nearest a telephone pole. Ours was first placed in our Little Theater. It was moved to our A.V. room, and an additional one is in our library. No cable-TV capability has been extended to any classroom. Incidently, the drop in our library is at the entrance to the library and thus of limited use.

The cable company that serves my school's area has offered to extend the cable capability to nine social-studies classrooms, at their cost. The cost equals two years of the department's total operating budget. Thus we, like most of the other schools in this area of California, do not have cable-ready classrooms. We do have access to one or two "drops'' from which we can tape, nothing more.

Once again, with the use of statistics, business paints a brighter picture of its support for education than really exists. Perhaps the public should be told the truth and not the myopic viewpoint of the cable-TV industry.

Richard F. Kraft
History/Social Science
Los Altos High School
Hacienda Heights, Calif.

To the Editor:

If in fact nihilism is prevailing in black communities and increasing numbers of our young black people are faced with "meaninglessness, hopelessness, and lovelessness,'' as described by Cornel West ("The Deeper Threat to Black America,'' Commentary, April 14, 1993), it is imperative that all of us take corrective action that can bring back a sense of reality and possibility to these young people.

I found it particularly hard to read Mr. West's final comment that "now young black people lead the nation in suicides.'' Regardless of the foul winds and treacherous storms tha have buffeted them, young blacks have never resorted to suicide as an answer. Our legacy has been one of strength and survival.

Education is still the key that unlocks doors. The doors do not open automatically, but chances increase and meaninglessness, hopelessness, lovelessness can be ameliorated. Those of us who work with young people have a responsibility to let them know this message. We also have to let them know that though life may be difficult, suicide is final.

Rodgers M. Lewis
Superintendent of Schools
Irvington, N.J.

Vol. 12, Issue 31

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