Stop AtrocitiesConcerning Bosnia-Herzegovina: I am not inclined...

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Stop Atrocities

Concerning Bosnia-Herzegovina: I am not inclined toward military solutions where political solutions are possible, but for the first time in my life, I would favor U.S. intervention in force in a foreign country.

It seems to me that an acceptable political solution is not possible in Bosnia, and that allowing the Serbs to consolidate their conquest-by-atrocity is not only unconscionable, but very dangerous.

Morally, what is happening is altogether too much like what happened in Nazi Germany. Someone -- the Europeans by themselves, or NATO, or the U.S. -- should be willing to say that what is happening is intolerable, and be willing to put a stop to it by force.

Strategically, the danger is not only that this war may become a general Balkan war, although that is certainly a possibility.

There are also the broader lessons that rape, murder, and ethnic cleansing are effective as instruments of conquest, and that the international community is incapable of mustering a meaningful response.

There are plenty of places in Europe and the former Soviet Union and the rest of the world where such lessons may have terrible consequences in the coming few years.

Sanctions have not slowed down the atrocities in Bosnia, and the U.N. negotiations are simply being used by Serbia and the Serb militias to give themselves time to extend and consolidate their territorial gains.

Unless we want to validate conquest by means of atrocity, it is time to roll back the Serb militias by force.

Tim Cliffe

Emmitsburg

Jacobs' Gift

On page one of The Sun's Feb. 27 Business section, in large type it says, "Jacobs forgoes pledge."

By reading the article, it would appear to me that you secured this information from City Councilman Anthony Ambridge. I believe it is ridiculous for Mr. Ambridge to discuss Mr. Jacob's failure to meet a charitable pledge . . .where there is a long history of financial problems.

I don't know Mr. Jacobs, but I would be inclined to believe that when he made the pledge, he intended to keep it.

But I definitely believe that this was a matter that should have been privately handled between the hospital and Mr. Jacobs. A gift to a charity is a private matter between the donor and donee, and is not the business of politicians or of your paper.

Alleck A. Resnick

Baltimore

Equal Access

Now that President Clinton has accepted the invitation to throw out the first ball at the Orioles opening game, I think the opposition is entitled to equal time. Why not invite Rush Limbaugh to catch it?

Charles Hebler

Baltimore

When in Rome

Reading Glenn Small's Feb. 14 article brought to mind a past controversy involving two Baltimore County gun clubs and nearby residents.

Unfortunately, the problem arose due to mismanaged growth and a lack of common sense zoning on the part of the county government.

Builders were permitted to develop the open land surrounding the clubs within a very close proximity of their property lines, in a few areas as close as 50 yards.

Prior to the dwellings becoming occupied, real estate agents were notified by the clubs' leaders to inform prospective buyers that they would be residing near an active firing range and would be subjected to noise caused by discharging firearms.

The clubs went as far as to place signs along their property lines indicating the same. It couldn't be said that no effort was made by the clubs to heed the warning.

Once the new kids on the block planted their roots, complaints of loud noise and concern for public safety commenced.

The clubs alluded to the fact that they had existed at their respective locations for 50 years, and that they are recognized as an asset to the community.

I am happy to say these clubs still exist, and I haven't heard of anyone's safety placed in jeopardy or of anyone becoming deaf.

As to the complaining family in your story, I understand the concern for their safety, but it is not a factor. From what I gather no laws were broken.

My advice to them is if you move to Rome, you do as the Romans do.

If you feel that you cannot, you must learn to tolerate others' ways of life as long as they are within the laws, and especially when they were there first.

As to the group doing the shooting, it seems that there are grounds for a lawsuit for violation of their civil rights as well as their Second Amendment constitutional rights.

Roger W. Lambie Sr.

Joppa

Fiddling

After reading Nelson Marans' letter, "After 2 Neros," March 5, wigging the Republicans for being obstructionist, one thought occurs.

The March 6 Sun printed an item reminding everyone that Nero Clinton and Nero Gore are working toward ending waste in government.

They have formed a committee.

Oh boy!

John E. Mullikin

Cambridge

Drug Costs

You ran an ad March 2 supposedly ". . . from the people who work in Pharmaceutical Companies." The ad was signed by "America's Research-Based Pharmaceutical Companies."

I am curious, who paid for the ad? I'm willing to bet it wasn't any group of people who work for these companies themselves.

The ad fails to mention that the industry spends more on advertising than on researching cures for cancer, stroke, AIDS, etc. combined. I have no idea which ailments have ever been cured by advertising except a anemic balance sheet.

The other problem I had with the advertisement was the comparison in hours worked to purchase the same drugs in the United States compared to other countries.

The hours worked is immaterial. The facts are that the same drugs manufactured by the same companies cost less in American dollars in foreign countries than Americans at home pay for them. A recent TV show showed Americans traveling to Mexico to buy pharmaceuticals manufactured in the United States which they could not afford to buy in the United States.

The ad also states that the prescription drug industry is only responsible for 7 percent of the nation's total health care expenses. It would seem any reduction in this amount would amount to a considerable dollar saving. Save $10 million here and $10 million there and the first thing you know you are saving real money.

On the same day I received a Newsweek with an article that showed five popular prescription medications which rose an average of 27.2 percent over the last five years. Does this sound somewhat like greed?

The statement that pharmaceuticals have averaged below 1 percent of gross national product does not impress me.

One percent of a nation's total gross national product is equal to the total product of many nations.

Does Congress have to look at the profits in drug companies? Yes, they are definitely a part of the overwhelming cost of health in the United States while these companies are subsidizing other countries.

Charles D. Connelly

Baltimore

Another Victory Bond Drive?

I have listened to myriad concepts and proposals to reduce the ever-increasing federal budget deficit. No matter how pragmatic or radical, they all come down to one thing: tax increases.

Why not try an innovative, yet historically proven, approach to raise revenues? By this I mean a bond drive similar to those undertaken in World War II to solicit funds to achieve victory. The deficit is certainly a crisis of major proportions, so why not wage an appropriate national response?

The bonds could resemble traditional savings bonds but be explicitly designated to reduce the deficit and not be legally redeemable for a minimum of five years. This could tap the enormous potential of American patriotism. Each could participate according to his or her ability to invest without getting entangled in a typical tax-and-spend boondoggle.

Of course, I am sure a gaggle of brilliant economists would have uncounted reasons why this would not work. I could only reply by asking: what have their wondrous theories done for us so far?

William John Shepherd

Crofton

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