letters 10/19

October 19, 2000

Letters to the Editor 10/19

Slings and arrows get the ax at North

To the editor:

Last spring the North High Dramatic Players performed "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory." During one of our performances the administrators came to watch and support our play. After the performance they told our director that Mike Teevee (one of the characters in the play) could no longer use the small toy cap gun as a prop. As this news spread through the cast we all became a bit outraged. It's not like the character of Mike Teevee was promoting violence. He was a cowboy - not a hit man or a gang member, but a cowboy in a play. Apparently in the zero tolerance acts, no one can use anything comparable to a weapon on Washington County Board of Education property.

However, the one question that I ask is what will happen to Shakespeare's great classics, like Romeo and Juliet? What will the Dramatic Players do during the all-famous scene when Juliet takes her life with a dagger? And who can forget the final fight scene from Hamlet when Laertes poisons his sword and Claudius poisons the drink? What shall we use to portray the classics that brought the theater to life? When will all of this silliness stop? Props are props and nothing more! Many of our North High Guard members twirl rifles during field band performances. How is it that the Dramatic Players cannot use plastic toy guns but the Guard can use a big wooden rifle? Is a rifle not a gun? Yes it may be wooden but it's still a lookalike, just like the one used by the Dramatic Players.


I am sorry to say this, but soon we will not be able to perform any play that contains violence. If this happens we will lose the beauty and genius of every Shakespearean tragedy and dozens of other important plays. Why must we be forced to limit our creativity? Why must they stifle our passion for the arts? When will this madness end?!

Katie Murphy

North High


Embassy assist

To the editor:

My father, an 80-year-old Indian citizen wanted to participate in a family reunion at Portland, Ore., consisting of three children, six grandchildren, two great-grandchildren and five in-laws. He was denied a tourist visa in 1999 by the United States Embassy in Tamilnadu.

During his last visit to the United States in 1991, he had to extend his visa due to my mother's illness. Unfortunately, he did not have a copy of I-94 (which he was not required to keep), the original of which he correctly turned in to Immigration and Naturalization Services at the airport at the time of his departure from the U.S. in 1991. The United States of America failed to grant a tourist visa to a gentleman who was almost 80, whose children and grandchildren are productive tax-paying citizens of their adopted country (the country of origin for three of the grandchildren) because the INS could not readily verify his legal extension of the visa since the records were not computerized in 1991. Moreover, the good old INS was not willing to accept the canceled checks as proof of payment for the renewal of the visa.

Representative Bartlett's office and his wonderful staff were always there for me to take up my cause as their own and corresponded with the embassy in Tamilnadu several times and did all that they could do to obtain a visa for my father and they were always kind, considerate and willing to commiserate with me.

Myself and my family want to thank the congressman and his staff for all their time.

Nirmala Britti

Gaithersburg, Md.

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