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Charity Begins at Home

I would like to inform Lionel Foster that Black America is not really consciously charitable toward each other

Charity Begins at Home

I would like to inform Lionel Foster that Black America is not really consciously charitable toward each other (“Was It Something I Said?” Where I Come From. Dec. 7). Which is why there are not many charities that are founded by black people. Black America spends almost a trillion dollars in this country, but to look at black inner-city communities, you wouldn’t believe it. The black middle class and rich blacks do not come into poor black communities to give out food and sleeping bags. When the mayor refused to meet with Mr. Foster in front of City Hall she showed everyone where her heart is.

Leo A. Williams

Baltimore

Veiled Motives

From your review, I’m sure Rohina Malik’s one-woman show, Unveiled, is both interesting and entertaining (“Rohina Malik,” Stage, Nov. 30). However, I feel the reasons she gave in Andrea Appleton’s interview as to why some Muslim women wear veils (“for God,” “a feminist approach,” “a cultural thing”) missed the most important reason of all . . . because they’re forced to. In places such as Iran, Afghanistan, and Saudi Arabia, a woman on the street sans her veil is immediately threatened with arrest.

Case in point: In July 2000, I flew from Amsterdam to Iran for a week-long astronomy conference. Here’s something I observed. As our plane approached Tehran, suddenly all the women on board, some very stylishly dressed, some wearing shorts and T-shirts, were standing in the aisle putting on veils and raincoats. Knowing nothing about Iranian life, this came as a complete surprise! Flying out of Tehran, just the opposite happened. The women passengers stood up and removed their veils and raincoats, revealing their true sartorial selves. The message for me was that if Iranian women wanted to dress Western-style outside of Iran, they’d like to in Iran, as well. However, on Iran’s streets, Allah and all that notwithstanding, they are forced in no uncertain terms to conform to the mullahs’ dress code. If it were otherwise, you’d see at least some nonconformist women on the streets of Tehran, a city whose population tops 7 million.

Herman M. Heyn

Baltimore

I’m a Monkey Man

I loved Rick Shelley’s short story (“The Monkey Man Escapes,” Fiction and Poetry Contest, Nov. 30). It is magical realism at its best—odd, humorous, and mysterious. Where did that monkey man go? Uh oh, here he comes!

Lawrence White

Baltimore

Corrections: Our interview with director Barry Levinson (Feature, Dec. 7) inadvertently misreported the approximate budget of movie The Bay; it was $2 million, not $10 million.

And the photograph of the late local arts advocate Nancy Haragan that accompanied our article about her (Art, Dec. 7) went to press missing a photo credit; City Paper used it courtesy of Haragan’s family, to whom we extend our condolences. City Paper regrets the error.

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