Letters to the Editor

Dear Editor,

Good satire is hard to find these days, so I for one especially appreciated Andrew Barton’s lampoon of right-wing bluster and illogic in the Feb. 28 issue [“Letters to the Editor”]. The condescending tone (“And that, boys and girls, journalists and college instructors, is how the tax system works.”) was perfect, as was the sub-juvenile name-calling (“… liberals cannot grasp this straight-forward logic!”). Hilarious! And to cap it all off, the Rush Limbaughesque math error in the silly story: Barton “forgot” to subtract the cost of the absent 10th man’s dinner before calculating how much they were short when it came time to pay the bill. Brilliant!

In the spirit of Barton’s great satire, let me point out that Janis Dietz’ letter in the same issue points toward a way to end all American participation in wars, thus inadvertently giving comfort and aid to her liberal/pacifist enemies. Since every war that we have ever participated in has been justified in terms of establishing and defending our freedoms, if we simply gave up all of our freedoms as Dietz suggests then we would obviously have no more reason to go to war! I wonder if there is a budding right-wing John Lennon out there who could turn this into a song (“Imagine no more freedom, nothing to kill or die for …”). Does John Ashcroft write songs?

Keep up the good work, Campus Times!

Ernie Thomson
Associate Professor of Sociology and Criminology


Dear Editor,

Jaclyn, after reading your column last week [“Comedians provide needed insight,” March 7], I am so glad you live in America where you can publicly disparage the President, appropriately protected by your first amendment right to free speech. If you were living in Iraq and the author of a similar article directed toward President Hussein, by now your family would most likely be wondering to where you had disappeared! Sadly, too many Americans share your belief that life is about “the pursuit of happiness” ­ one best lived in a cocoon where you can spend $80 a person being entertained and only willing to confront global issues when they directly affect you.

Your analysis and inference that Bush is driven more by his father’s Presidency than the founding principles of ‘life, liberty and justice’ is shallow and unfortunate. Throughout history, sending American men and women to the prospect of death in a foreign land has undoubtedly been the most serious decision of any Presidency. Unfortunately, outside of utopia, war is sometimes a necessary last resort to rid the world of evil. As history has shown, including most recently in Bosnia, such men don’t respond to diplomacy and hearty renditions of kum-by-ya, but rather to the force they understand.

As a British citizen, and student of history, I know too well the consequence of appeasing dictators because of fear of conflict. Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain’s infamous 1938 “peace in our time” episode ­ a black spot in European history ­ is an example of how indecision and fear only bought time for a dictator to conquer much of Western Europe and murder millions of men, women and children.

Is the prospect of war scary? Yes. Would I rather us close our borders and confront evil with pointless discussions about the definition of what constitutes “immediate?” Absolutely not! Fear is no reason to avoid the responsibility the U.S. has as a world leader. Too whom much is given, much is expected. France, Germany, Russia and many of my own countrymen are paralyzed by fear or concern about financial loss in a post-Saddam Iraq. I am thankful that we have a leader that is willing to face evil with authority and purpose. Is Saddam another Hitler? I doubt he’ll ever have the military might the latter had, however directly assisting in the detonation of a chemical or biological device in the U.S. or U.K., I’d rather not wait and see.

Time will only tell whether former President Clinton’s multi-billion dollar blackmail payments to North Korea in the mid-’90s to appease the threat from the Korean peninsula will come back to bite this President or the next. Is a military conflict in North Korea necessary? I hope not, and believe not. One thing I do know is that the United Nations will do absolutely nothing in the face of North Korea’s defiance of their nuclear watchdog (IAEA). Well maybe that is not true. This bastion of inaction will likely spend the next twelve years talking about it.

Jaclyn ­ you may want to make a joke of our President. Instead, I choose to pray for wisdom, strength and clarity for him and his cabinet. At least I know President Bush and Prime Minister Blair are willing to stand before the world, despite negative polls, and confront the threat of evil head on.

Andrew Barton
Director of Development


Dear Editor,

In reference to Paul Alvarez’s response to Janis Dietz’ letter to the editor [March 7]; it is distressing that, in perilous times such as these, it seems some can only recall mistakes our country made, rather than our countless acts of virtue, kindness and generosity.

One would have to be a certain age bracket to remember the Berlin Air Lift, when we fed a city for some time while the Communists did their best to starve Berliners to death. America, in the main, is responsible for the dismantling of Communism and the Berlin Wall coming down. We have all lived to see a world free of this despotic way of life, and the people of a legion of countries given a chance to enjoy some of the freedoms we have and take so for granted. Perhaps our younger generation should be told of our many finer moments and battles fought and won for the freedom and dignity of mankind, and of the many peoples of the world we feed, clothe, and bring medical treatment to. Perhaps we should celebrate our humanity to the world, rather than seize upon our mistakes.

As I recall, we went to war with Japan when the cowardly attacked us at Pearl Harbor, killing countless Americans. What country so attacked would win the war, then occupy briefly, and help our former enemy to rebuild and rejoin the community of the nations. Perhaps we should revisit this memory as quickly as we do the tragedy of the incarceration of America Japanese. It would probably be only fair to also consider the mood of our country at the moment of that attack and the battle we were engaged in for our very survival.

When our American soldiers go “into harm’s way,” we can only hope that Americans will support them and for our great country to come through this war with as few casualties on “all” sides as possible. God be with them.

Linda Bearman
Administrative Assistant, Registrar’s Office

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Journalism operations manager at the University of La Verne. Production manager and business manager of the Campus Times.

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