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“Hate Canal” (11/7) is a contender for the all-time grand prize for amateurish journalism. It wastes page after page of perfectly good newsprint in a mindless collage of snotty little anecdotes ridiculing a historic treasure and those heroic individuals who are trying to save it.

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The author rails about how “boring” the canal towpath is. I suspect that he is a protégé of James Watt, who, in a park service-sponsored rafting trip down the Grand Canyon with a group of Reagan-appointed VIPs, made his infamous utterance, “By the second day, we were all praying for the helicopters to come and take us out!”

Granted that the canal has been trouble-plagued from its beginning, that is no reason to abandon it and “to stop wasting taxpayers’ money on it,” as the author suggests. If it is truly so “boring,” how come there are throngs of people enjoying it on any day when the weather is nice? And on only a $5-million annual budget, it is the bargain of the century!

Admittedly, maintenance problems are overwhelming, but let’s hear some constructive suggestions instead of just jaded, jeering judgments from sidewalk superintendents!

Chevy Chase, Md.