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Powell's skin color shouldn't be important


Pertaining To Your Sept. 21 editorial, "What the general has wrought," I find it ridiculous to find a reason to "thank" Colin Powell for being a black American and allowing voters to "size" him up as a potential president.

Mr. Powell would be a qualified presidential candidate regardless of his race.

The Sun has missed the point. Mr. Powell does not want people to "forget" his color. But he also does not want to be commended for his color. Mr. Powell wants people to see an "American who happens to be black."

It is not easy to see race as an afterthought, especially when we may be talking about our first black American president.

Your saying that "his demonstrating cross-racial appeal has ready been a boon to this country" implies that Mr. Powell's greatest contribution is a new perspective on the race of future presidents.

The editorial finally hits a valid point when addressing the effects Mr. Powell has already had on politics.

Although the Democrats received their wake-up call when the Republicans took over Congress, Mr. Powell has shown everyone there is a significant number of moderate voters who aren't satisfied with their current representation in government. Democrats see this as an opportunity and Republicans see it as a threat to their unity.

A moderate conservative, whether Colin Powell or someone who has not yet surfaced, is needed to appeal to those who are inclined to disagree with ultra-conservatives.

Mr. Powell is a pioneer in his own right, but it is patronizing to say we should "thank" him for awakening the nation.

Susan Ann Jenkins


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