Thursday, July 28, 2005
Bush Buries the Big Picture
I decided in the last election that conservatives were genetically different than liberals, making them less able to see the larger picture. Sarah Mittanck’s letter [July 14-20] reinforces my theory. She doesn’t understand why Americans would criticize their government at a time when everyone should pull together to fight terrorism. Terrorists are crazed killers who would, for no apparent reason, steal our freedom and leisurely way of life to make some meaningless point. However, if we operate on the assumption that terrorism is pointless violence, then we ignore irresponsibly our part in motivating these extremists, thereby ensuring a long and tragic conflict.
It is US foreign policy that Arabs don’t like, our support of Israel and desire to exploit Arab oil. We’ve bombed a half dozen of their countries since Reagan. We’ve treated the Palestinians unfairly since 1948. We have yet to clarify Bush’s connection to the bin Laden family and are, by Bush’s own deception, into yet another war in Iraq that is rapidly becoming his Vietnam. We are responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi citizens between our wars and sanctions.
We’re dealing with Islamic fundamentalists who, like Christian fundamentalists, won’t easily change their minds. But if we stopped our imperialist activity and began supporting the growing progressive movements in the Arab World rather than our favorite despotic regimes (thus undermining democratic and social reforms while inspiring extremists), then perhaps the terrorist problem could be solved from within Islam.
It isn’t terrorists who threaten papers like the Monterey County Weekly, as Mittanck suggested; it is those who would have us stop the criticism.
Philip Schafer | Monterey
Opposing the War is Supporting the Troops
Sarah Mittanck [Letters, July 14-20] seems to mix two distinct issues: supporting our troops and accepting government policy. We should always support our troops, for they are obligated to kill and die for us when necessary. In a just war, killing is sometimes justifiable. In an unjust war, it is murder. We support our troops in a just war by doing all we can to support the war, and in an unjust war by doing all we can to stop it. In the case of Iraq, many are convinced that our government invaded Iraq for oil well knowing that this would increase Islamic terrorism against us. Protest of the misuse of our troops supports rather than undercuts them.
John Kimber | Seaside
Women Demand Women’s Justice
With Justice Sandra Day O’Connor’s resignation, we will lose a justice who has supported women’s health and privacy. It is imperative that a new justice is chosen with care and deliberation. The Supreme Court has recognized and upheld an individual’s fundamental right to privacy through landmark decisions such as Roe v. Wade and Griswold v. Connecticut. The Reproductive Rights Coalition of Monterey County, comprised of 22 local organizations, joins pro-choice groups nationwide in insisting that any new Supreme Court Justice protect women’s health, safety and lives by upholding our access to all reproductive health services, including abortion and birth control. For more info, visit: www.thepowerofchoice.net.
Cathleen Gable | Chair, Reproductive Rights Coalition of Monterey County
In “Muted Colors” [July 21-27] the Weekly
misidentified Annette Molina’s brother. His name was Willie
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