* April 19 I turned on the television to look at C-Span. The debate regarding the retirement of Adm. Frank B. Kelso II was in full swing. It was amazing to me the vehemence with which several male senators attacked the women senators who all, regardless of party, voted to deny the Navy’s top admiral retirement with four stars (“Senate to Retire Kelso at 4 Stars After Fiery Debate,” April 20). His shameless part in the Tailhook affair was ample reason for his removal from the Navy long ago. The disgraceful whitewash of those involved will be a black mark on Navy history for years to come.
I was in the Navy for two years during World War II and harassment was in full swing then. However, my generation had not as yet had its consciousness raised, and we handled these situations ourselves--each as it occurred. The senators who voted to allow Kelso to retire as a four-star admiral show that the “old boy system” is still in command and has changed little since my career in the Navy 50 years ago.
Kudos to Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa.), who redeemed himself with his forthright support of the denial. Most of all, brickbats to Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska). He should bury his face in a large iceberg with shame. It is obvious that women still have to struggle mightily for fair and unbiased treatment.
HELEN M. MUES
* In a dozen lifetimes--if he tried to--Bill Clinton couldn’t disgrace our military as much as did America’s four-star admiral, Frank B. Kelso II, in one fun weekend in Vegas.