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FOR JULIE WAKEFIELD TO say that the cabdrivers of Washington “harbor TB” (“Baby Is D.C. Sick,” 2/23) is indeed an unfair and troubling statement no matter how unintentional it may be. It’s sad to see the stereotypical image of the average cabbie (dirty, diseased illegal alien straight out of Bangladesh, complete with unpronounceable name) can even be found in an otherwise respectable publication such as this one.

The article suggests that D.C. is sick, but it proves that the public’s state of mind is far worse. Too often, people of “different” backgrounds are degraded and seen as second-class human beings. When are people going to open their eyes and realize how widespread these misconceptions are?

Don’t get me wrong. I am in no way personally criticizing Julie Wakefield for her statement, but simply pointing out how extensively these stereotypes have become part of the mainstream.

Friendship Heights