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The Baltimore Sun

More accurate to call Sen. Obama 'biracial'

In his column "Obama bid raises question: What does black mean?" (Commentary, Sept. 29), Leonard Pitts Jr. raises the question: "What does black mean?"

Mr. Pitts quotes some who ask if Sen. Barack Obama is "black enough" and describes the senator as an African-American who walks the same tightrope former Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley did.

Allow me to remind Mr. Pitts, and others who seem to ignore this fact, that Mr. Obama's mother and the grandparents who helped raise him were Caucasian.

In this light, let us refer to Mr. Obama, if we must refer to him in racial terms, as "biracial."

Perhaps this will solve Mr. Pitts' dilemma.

Jeanne Keighley, Parkville

Race-based labels serve little purpose

After reading Leonard Pitts Jr.'s column about the definition of race, I fail to see any value in placing a racial label before or after a person's name ("Obama bid raises question: What does black mean?" Commentary, Sept. 29).

I agree with Sen. Barack Obama that we need change.

I think we should address him as "Senator Obama." Period.

William G. Huppert, Perry Hall

CEO deserves blame for Constellation's fall

The writer of the letter "Md. politicians cost Constellation billions" (Sept. 22) asked the right question: "How could management not have planned" for the problems Constellation Energy Group encountered?

But he then goes on to place the blame for the downfall of Constellation at the feet of Maryland politicians.

While I do not love Maryland's politicians, the fall of Constellation Energy has to be laid squarely at the feet of CEO Mayo A. Shattuck III.

The degree of risk a company undertakes should be in proportion to the losses it can absorb while still remaining viable.

Unfortunately for the employees and shareholders of Constellation Energy, Mr. Shattuck led the company down the proverbial primrose path by taking excessive risks out of greed. He betrayed the trust placed in him by others.

He should step down and not receive a golden parachute. We shouldn't reward stupidity.

Alphonse C. Bankard III, Baltimore

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