I T H E M A I L
It's an epidemic of people
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Believe it or not, 27 million
Americans are functionally
illiterate, about one adult in five.
The solution to this problem
is you...when you join the
fight against illiteracy. So call the
Coalition for Literacy at toll-free
1-800-228-8813 and volunteer.
The only degree you need
is a degree of caring.
C Altion for Literacy
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Malaysian Culture Shock?
"Passing Through" (COLLEGE LIFE) does
not represent the whole truth about Malay-
sian students in the United States. More
than half the Malaysian students studying
in American colleges are non-Muslims.
They are Buddhists and Christians. Be-
sides, even before coming here, most of us
knew something about American culture
through movies, television and music.
Thus, only those students with deeply Is-
lamic values may face culture shock when
they come to American campuses.
You give the impression that only Mus-
lims indigenous to Malaysia (Malays) are
nationals, while descendants of Chinese or
Indian immigrants are not. But the latter
ethnic groups make up more than 40 per-
cent of the population. Native Muslims are
already a disproportionate majority in Ma-
laysian universities and most Malays-un-
like their Chinese and Indian compatri-
ots-are given preferential status in the
civil service. It is perhaps this assurance of
a comfortable job that makes these malad-
justed Malays mere "passers-by" on the
American campus scene.
A. J. LIAO
University of Mississippi
Your cover story on AIDS and sexual
behavior on campuses (COLLEGE LIFE)
quoted sociologist William Simon as say-
ing, "All this talk about sex may be making
it more exciting than ever." I couldn't dis-
agree more. If anything, all this talk only
makes the subject of sex boring and clini-
cal. Students are averse to using condoms
because they deprive lovemaking of all ro-
mance, spontaneity and mystique. We are
caught in a dilemma between wanting to
ensure that we never catch AIDS and want-
ing lovemaking to be special and unham-
pered by a piece of rubber.
* 0 *0
The college kids you interviewed were
from top-name prestigious schools, and yet
they responded to the AIDS epidemic with
a "hayseed" education. Don't they know
that homosexuals and carousing studs
wear Izod shirts, too?
It's a sad commentary on our times that
the most vital education required on our
college campuses is sexual awareness and
the consequences of unchecked, unpro-
tected promiscuity. In our attempt to solve
the drug problem, we have turned to the
"just say no" campaign-not "safe drug
use" education. Why can't we apply the
same logic to the deadly game of musical
beds? Abstinence not only prevents preg-
nancy and disease but has an attractive
side effect-self-control and the knowl-
edge that one has power over the direction
of one's present as well as future. The
message has to be: "Don't gamble your
future away on a few nights of soon-for-
California State University
0 S *
After reading your article, I was almost
thankful for AIDS. All this senseless sex-
blind response to the animal instinct-
wrecks what could otherwise be very mean-
ingful relationships. After all, if sex were
brought back into its meaningful focus aid
devoted exclusively to one's ultimate com-
panion, one's spouse, propagation of sexual
diseases like AIDS would be impossible and
one would not even need condoms. I hope
therefore that AIDS will eventually help
modern society's disoriented sexuality to
get back on track.
Georgia Institute of Technology
No Potatoes in Moscow
As a former student of the University of
Idaho, I was insulted by the caption for the
photo of Lionel Hampton and his band.
(MULTIPLE CHOICE) Moscow, Idaho, is not
"deep in the spud belt." Potatoes are grown
in the southern part of the state; there isn't
a potato farm within 100 miles of Moscow.
CHRISTINE R. MAHER
University of California
"A Hospitable Future" (CAREERS) zeroed
in on the misconceptions about courses in
hotel administration and the scholarly dis-
respect that we "hotelies" often encounter.
I find my courses are both interesting and
Cornell School of Hotel Administration
Ithaca, N. Y.
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