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October 11, 2012 at 4:00 PM

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Shooting of Pakistani youth activist

Indefensible

The true nature of Islamic extremism and its attitude toward women was demonstrated by the horrific shooting of 14-year-old Malala Yousafzai in Pakistan, a young girl who had the temerity to advocate advanced, secular education for women [“Shooting of teen activist stirs outrage in Pakistan,” page one, Oct. 11].

Indefensible by any measure, this was a barbaric, cowardly act. With any luck, it will galvanize opposition throughout the region to the ideas of groups like the Taliban.

—Kevin Schafer, Seattle

Year of humanity

Kathleen Parker’s column [“Let’s retire the ‘year of the woman,’” Opinion, Oct. 11] is not only flawed; it couldn’t have been printed at a worse time — same day as the page-one story: “Shooting of teen activist stirs outrage in Pakistan.”

Parker asks, “How many years of the woman have we had?” Obviously not enough, when women throughout the world, as well as the United States, still have their human rights as well as their very lives threatened as a consequence of their gender.

Parker also states certain incidents “constitute a war on women only if all women find the positions reprehensible.” I suggest all women and all men should find those things reprehensible.

But I do agree with most of the last sentence in her column “How about we ditch the gender nonsense?” Declare this the year of humanity.

—Elaine Ward, Mill Creek


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