I RECENTLY READ DAVE BARRY'S COMmentary concerning the Entomological Society of America and its lobbying to have the monarch butterfly designated by Congress as the official national insect. As president and principal spokesperson of this "powerful" organization, I feel obliged to respond to his challenge that perhaps some other insect is more deserving as a national symbol.

The choice of the monarch butterfly was made after considering and rejecting many deserving, six-legged candidates. Among the other possibilities, and our reasons for rejecting them (for mostly political reasons), were: the praying mantis and Mormon cricket (separation of church and state); the stag beetle (too macho and sexist); the cigarette beetle (may be dangerous to your health); the glow worm (same reason); the Japanese beetle (Rockefeller Center, yes; national symbol, no); the shot hole borer (the gun lobby); and the katydid (we didn't). LOWELL R. NAULT President, Entomological Society of America Wooster, Ohio


THE LEAD ITEM IN YOUR J STREET FEAture on January 6 reported that the Virginia Lottery hired a woman who lives in Los Angeles to do some of the Virginia Lottery commercials, which were reported as filmed in California.

That must be very comforting to the many talented actors and actresses who live in Virginia or close by. It must also be comforting to the many fine production organizations in Virginia or close by who could and have done much fine work. Nice for them to know that the state of Virginia spent its taxpayers' money in California.

I also notice that the California woman visited several Virginia cities a year ago. How nice for her, especially having all her traveling expenses picked up by the Virginia taxpayers. Obviously, the ad agency has the best interests of the citizens of Virginia close to its heart, or whatever it calls its heart.

DAVID P. SAMSON JR. Port Tobacco, Md.

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