Museum belongs on mayor's agenda

THE mayor should take a position in support of the 100-year-old Southwest Museum, which remains as a cultural anchor at its historical location in northeast Los Angeles (Mt. Washington) ["A Patron at the Helm," Jan. 7]. His priorities as stated: bringing art to the neighborhoods, revitalization of the urban core, increased use of rapid transit and providing inspiring educational opportunities for area school children. The Southwest Museum at its current site epitomizes these priorities.

The only voice needed to be heard now is the mayor's -- on behalf of the 200,000 students who live within walking distance from a metro station. The train can deliver them to the foot of the museum.

NANCY SMITH

Los Angeles

Smith is a retired art and

history teacher.

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I KNOW it seems trite to say that a society that fails to entrust its textures, sounds, colors and smells to its artists and craftspeople -- and to offer to its children access to these experiences -- is doomed to collapse. But I believe that childhood is brief and becoming even briefer. We don't have the luxury of tarrying much longer before we lose the opportunity to share the glorious, delicious diversity of L.A. with another generation of our children.

I always say that arts education is both pitifully cheap and immeasurably valuable. Yet I do not see an item on the mayor's agenda for community arts. Maybe that is where we need to take this discussion.

LINDA CAMPANELLA JAURON

San Fernando

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