BC SealBoston College Magazine Spring 2005
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BCM welcomes letters from readers. Letters may be edited for length and clarity, and must be signed to be published. Our fax number is (617) 552-2441; our e-mail address is bcm@bc.edu


As a member of BC's administrative staff back in the 1970s, I had the good fortune to work with John Smith ("Wise Guy," Linden Lane, Winter 2005). We all tend to celebrate visionary leaders, but behind each one is someone like John, ever alert to the risks and opportunities of the here and now. Every successful organization I have seen in the past 25 years has had a John Smith somewhere—plainspoken, passionate, and always on the lookout for open manholes.

Coleman J. Sullivan '71

Cary, North Carolina


"Executive Session" (Winter 2005) was enjoyable and informative, save for the outrageous statement of Jack Beatty that George Bush and Dick Cheney have spoken "systematic falsehoods" to the public beyond compare with anything John Kerry may have uttered. Mr. Beatty is certainly entitled to his opinion, but for BCM to publish this tripe is beyond excuse.

Charles E. Chase JD'68

Dedham, Massachusetts


"Remote Access" (Church21, Winter 2005) states that my diocese "has been roiled by clerical sexual abuse charges and accusations that a sitting bishop ignored the abuse." To set the record straight: Bishop Robert Vasa (Baker, Oregon) put forth a list of Catholic teachings in a pastoral letter entitled "Giving Testimony to the Truth." He will require all persons involved in parish ministry to sign it in order to continue in their ministry. The required affirmations include "the Church's teaching that any extramarital sexual relationships are gravely evil and that these include premarital relations, masturbation, fornication, the viewing of pornography, and homosexual relations." He has polarized our diocese. Many good people have left the Church here; many others have left their ministries.

Pam DiDente P'06

Bend, Oregon


In reading William Bole's "Extra Credit" (Linden Lane, Winter 2005), I take exception to the characterization of Leonard Peltier as an "imprisoned Native American activist"—the implication being that somehow his imprisonment was related to his political activism. A jury convicted Peltier of the cold-blooded, execution-style murders of two FBI agents. I am at a loss to understand how his background gives him credibility as a commentator on social change, in a college seminar at Boston College. I hope the class discussing Peltier's essay was made aware of the heinous nature of his crimes.

Gerald J. Montanari JD'67

Marshfield, Massachusetts


Re Ben Birnbaum's "Accordion Dreams" (Prologue, Winter 2005): There is nothing extravagant about the claims that Guido Deiro coined the name piano accordion and that he was the first to play the instrument on the vaudeville stage, make recordings, and appear in a sound picture featuring the instrument. The proofs can be found in the Guido Deiro Archive at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York and also at guidodeiro.com.

The years haven't been kind to the accordion. My father was treated like a rock star in his time. Variety had him as the highest-paid instrumentalist in vaudeville at $600 a week in 1910.

Count Guido Deiro

Las Vegas, Nevada


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