Johns Hopkins Magazine -- April 2000
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APRIL 2000

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Talk radio revisited
"Air Pollution" alternatives
Not the first master plan
A caption that doesn't ring true

Talk radio revisited

"Guido Veloce" is obviously referring to Rush Limbaugh throughout his critical essay (" Air Pollution," February). What Veloce bills as criticism of style still boils down to the fact that he doesn't like Limbaugh because he disagrees with him. Guido can turn to innumerable TV and radio shows to hear his own point of view. But it takes courage to hear the truth.
Charles Culver (MME '91)

"Air Pollution" alternatives

"Guido Veloce" is right on the money about the popular talk show hosts at both national and local levels. The antitheses of these boors are to be heard on your very own WJHU (88.1 FM) each weekday from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.

"The Diane Rehm Show" and "The Marc Steiner Show" both use the same general format of having a guest in the studio, followed by telephone callers with questions or additional comments. These hosts never dominate the conversation; they are facilitators. They do not deserve to be mentioned in the same breath with those in the essay. That is probably why they were not included.
Lee S. Fleishman

Not the first master plan

The Ayers/Saint/Gross master plan is not the first new plan since Hopkins moved to Homewood ["A New 'Plan for the Century,'" February]. During my tenure as Campus Architect from 1981 to 1987, the trustees commissioned a master plan from the Philadelphia firm of Wallace Roberts & Todd. The WRT plan, completed August 1986, identified and offered solutions for most of the problems still nagging JHU today, namely those of elbow room and pedestrian-vehicular congestion.

The 90-page WRT plan determined the site of the physics and astronomy building designed by Adam Gross' firm a year later and sparked the policy of paid parking at Homewood. It, too, recommended banning vehicles from the campus core and spoke of a need for better signage and streetscape furniture. It is too bad no one shared with you a copy of it for comparison with the newest plan.

Master plans need to be rewritten periodically as a reminder that the lovely green quads that connote academia are totally dependent on roads, walkways, and parking garages. Campus planners should follow the practice of good urban planning and attach the costs of these necessities onto the cost of developing each new building and renovation.
Thomas P. McCracken, AIA

A caption that doesn't ring true

Thank you for the well-written and deeply moving article on Dr. Chris Beyrer ["Lighting the Heart of Darkness," February]. This story exemplifies why this institution enjoys such global respect and admiration in a variety of fields. The key, as Dr. Beyrer and others constantly remind [us], is to remember that the sea of data and statistics we may lose ourselves in is composed of individuals and families whose lives have been directly affected by disease and death.

I also would like to point out that on p. 41, the image you have captioned "In a world filled with violence and confusion, Buddhism rang true for Beyrer," in fact pictures two Hindu Brahmin priests, preparing offerings of coconut for a Puja ceremony. The string around their chest and the ash and blood marking on their forehead, are strong clues that they are of the Brahmin caste as does their ceremonial white "dhoti" costume.
Alain B. Labrique (MHS '99)