Letters in brief

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The Independent Culture
Sir: The battle to discredit President Clinton seems more political than legal, and quite unedifying. Whatever one's views on the merits, it is very hard to understand how the President could be convicted on the changed word of an admitted perjurer, led by a prosecutor who has spent months of negotiation on the details of the evidence she is now to give.

How can any reliance be placed upon such evidence, and how could one ever be sure that it is her new story which is true, and the original a lie?

PETER REYNOLDS

Southport, Lancashire

Sir: If performance-enhancing drugs are to be allowed in sport, as Juan Antonio Samaranch seems to want (feature, 29 July), how long is it before genetically modified athletes are also acceptable?

GAVIN MAILLARDET

Addiscombe, Croydon

Sir: Martin Howe's contention (Letters 31 July) that adolescence is a time for experimentation and discovery is frankly, bollocks.

Adolescence is a time for guidance, compassion, wisdom, instruction, protectiveness and patience. It is only in the final years of the our century that we have had the manic cult of teenagers. Their counterparts in Athens and the Renaissance would have felt cheated of some of the most enduring influences of our cultural roots. We must honour youth by recognising that it is a formative stage, reinforced by behavioural repetition and social imagery. The less lonely experimentation and discovery young men and women have endure, unguided and unloved, the better.

IAN FLINTOFF

London

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