Down the Drain

Industry has long used "dilution is the solution to pollution" to solve their waste disposal problems, and according to your article ["Reeling," by Bob Burtman, April 6], Lake Sam Rayburn "has reduced its surface area by 25 percent." Since the dilution factor has significantly decreased, might I suggest that Donohue Industries voluntarily reduce its waste releases by 25 percent rather than requesting an increase? It works for me.

Catherine O'Brien


Cheap Enron Eats?

Your opinion of the new baseball stadium is wrong. The stadium itself is rejuvenation. It's within walking distance of the already rejuvenated part of downtown. Only time will tell, but I think you are going to have to eat your words. Especially when you actually start to like it there.

Matt LeDoux


Richard Connelly's "Low and Outside" [March 30] was not only an attempt at humor that failed, but reprehensible in its treatment of the Catholic faith. The many offensive lines from the alleged memos in the article demonstrate the outrageous disrespect that Connelly showed.

Connelly is either ignorant of the impact of his cheap jokes or is willful in mocking the most sacred sacrament of the Catholic Church. I recommend that he seek enlightenment by reading the Catechism of the Catholic Church. If he wants to discuss Catholicism, then he should at least know that about which he speaks.

Susan Fani, director of legal research

Catholic League for Religious and

Civil Rights

New York, New York

I've been enjoying your coverage of Enron Field. I'm glad I'm not the only one fed up with the gushing of the local media. I'm glad to see that I'm not the only one who thought of Fenway's 310 feet when our flacks started calling Enron's 315 feet the shortest down-the-line distance in the majors.

However, I don't think that this figure is correct anymore, either. I have read in other publications and heard Bill Brown and Jim Deshaies speaking of the 305 feet down-the-line distance to right field at San Francisco's new Pacific Bell Ballpark -- though we all know that that ballpark doesn't really count, since it wasn't paid for with taxpayer funds.

John W. Royal


Language Arts

Thank you for your excellent article on "Carlos," highlighting the problems with bilingual education ["Tongue-tied," by Margaret Downing, April 6]. You got it right. Let me add a few things:

MALDEF's grievance with the Department of Justice has been rejected with no change in HISD's policy. No revisions in the policy are anticipated, but the board members are open to input, just as we were prior to approval of the policy. Contrary to the spin, we met extensively with Hispanic and other leaders prior to approving the policy.

What remains to be seen, frankly, is whether the policy will be followed or ignored. I am confident that Dr. Paige's administration is supportive. However, as a board member, I have no idea whether our policies are followed on a day-to-day basis in the classroom. That is the problem.

Keep up the interest in our foreign-language students. They deserve a quality education, too, and they have additional hurdles to jump, in learning English along with their other subjects.

Jeff Shadwick

HISD trustee, District VII

AcCEPting Praise

Great reporting! Congratulations on your exposé on CEP ["Making (Up) the Grade," by Wendy Grossman, April 6] and on the repressive environment of the Houston school district. How do I recommend you for a Pulitzer? I am sending this to my colleagues and to the NYC education reporters. Keep up the good work, and stay on this story!

Jackie Ancess

New York, New York

I applied for a job at CEP and had a chance to see the program. It may keep students quiet, and it may keep students in attendance, but I don't see how it could produce the educational growth that is claimed. Drill and practice on a computer is "marching in place." You may become a better marcher, but you will not learn any new steps.

The fable of the naked emperor ended without explaining that the little boy who exposed the scam was probably exiled, incarcerated or worse. CEP should rethink its statistical strengths. They are probably a significant factor in the increase in achievement scores of those who no longer have to deal with the selfish, time-consuming, whole-hog disruption of the CEP student.

Name withheld by request


Altar Egos

Were I as articulate as Margaret Downing, I would have written an article just like that ["Trying to Make Amens," March 30]. Long ago, we had prayer before football games, but I don't remember any lasting effects, such as fewer injuries or more wins. But of course we had only Protestants in our school, no Catholics or Jews or -- God forbid -- Hindus or Muslims.

It seems to me that I recently read that less than 50 percent of Christians attend church (where they could pray openly without any objections). That seems the logical place to pray.

This article's most powerful message was delivered with the last three words, "Yes, you do." Keep up the good work.

George White


In the article on FBISD, you mentioned that Jesus disapproved of public prayer. If you read Matthew 6:5, you will see that while it is hypocritical to pray loudly on street corners and in synagogues, it doesn't say a thing about it being hypocritical to pray loudly in football stadia.

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