Every bookstore carries volumes of Fodor’s travel guides. They are a useful source of information about cities and countries throughout the world. Unfortunately, they can also be a source of anti-Catholic bigotry. Take the Fodor’s Exploring Italy book.

Mammismo—the attachment of Italian men to their mothers—is as strong as ever. Christ, runs the old joke, was an Italian, brought up at home for 30 years in the belief that his mother was a virgin and he was the son of God.”

That gem is found on page 11 of the current edition, published in 1998.

On the next page, this is found: “The Catholic Church has been bound up with Italian life for almost 2,000 years. Although now in apparent decline and no longer obsessed with political power, it still plays a part in national affairs and impinges—however subtly—on many aspects of day to day life.”

We’ve asked Peter Olson, chairman of Random House, Inc., to delete these bigoted statements from the next edition of this book. Why don’t you do the same? Write to him at 201 East 50th Street, New York, New York 10022.

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