To the Editor: I found the front page article "Panda Closing Sparks Rumors" (April 10) stunningly irresponsible and offensive. That the closing of a local business inspired rumors based on the broadest and basest racial stereotypes is disappointing, but even worse is that this paper gave them play.

I've seen many local businesses shut their doors, often suddenly. I can't recall any being investigated with such zeal. Given the difficult economic climate for small businesses, wouldn't it make more sense to "investigate" the economic im plications of yet another business closing, or the chal lenges faced by minority-owned businesses in a predominantly white community?

Rhonda Schlangen

West Pawlet


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