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We miss a vital chance for understanding when we swap out ethnic characters

RE “ ‘MILLIE’ fight creates a chilling effect” (Op-ed, March 20): We are missing a vital point when we change and paper over important characters that writers create deliberately for plays and musicals. These characters — Asian, Puerto Rican, Jewish, or Indian — present an excellent teaching moment for educators within real-life contexts that children can understand and that, hopefully, reach their parents.

I’m a great-grandmother, a teacher of many years, and a lifelong volunteer in organizations that advocate not just tolerance, but understanding of all the “others” in our world.

We should recognize when we have opportunities to challenge wide-ranging bigotry and show what it is really about.


Sylvia Namyet