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To the editors:

For such a good newspaper, I found the Reader's December 22nd front page story on the events of 1989 sadly cynical in light of the year's happenings. For those of us who disregard the wealth of sleazy talk show hosts, the television commercials, and the "Batman" merchandising craze, 1989 was a year of exciting, and at times frightening, turmoil and change. Certainly your newspaper has not forgotten the violent revolutions in Eastern Europe, those in China, and elsewhere? And what of our planet whose environment grows dangerously unstable, was this lost amidst L.A. Gear advertisements and Donald Trump? In the future, 1989 will be regarded as a year of enormous political change, and if it is for the good or for the bad, we shall see. But to assume, as your article does, that our world is composed of transient popular culture, is equally absurd as it is stupid.

Nicholas McCarthy
S. Wabash

Paul Pekin replies:

Guilty, I guess, but not of Donald Trump, please. I tried, I really tried to write a sober, serious analytical piece on the turmoil in Eastern Europe and how it is affecting the environment. I would have done it too, but when I started my research I discovered Transylvania was really part of Rumania (that's how we used to spell it when I was a kid--I had a whole page in my stamp book filled with Rumanian stamps, some of them overprinted with nasty black swastikas), and I got to thinking about Elvira, Queen of the Night, and how her laser disc would no more die than some of the other things that come out of her part of the world, and there you have it. Meanwhile, a suggestion for you news junkies who never get enough. Look into Time, Newsweek, and the Chicago Tribune.

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