End of Sovereignty
The real issue of the North American Free Trade Agreement is national sovereignty -- not jobs or free trade.
What is in the works down the road for the U.S. and the rest of the western hemisphere is similar to the unification plans for Europe.
Nations become states. There is a common currency, merged economies, open borders, free trade and unlimited immigration. Control is exercised by appointment of super national bureaucrats with the power to overrule local, state and national laws.
Under the Supreme Council of the Western Hemisphere the United States and the other countries will no longer control their own destinies.
Gone will be the safeguards of the U.S. Constitution, including free speech, free press, civil rights and private property rights. The Supreme Council starts with economic control. Then, as former President Nixon would say, "Grab them by their economy, and their hearts and minds will follow."
Honest free trade is worthwhile. High tariffs to protect inefficient producers penalize buyers in the protected country and sellers and taxpayers in the exporting country. However, a few exceptions to free trade for reasons of national defense or policy are understandable.
But we don't need NAFTA's 2,000 pages of detailed regulations and agreements enforced by a budding Supreme Council to have free trade. Simple nation-to-nation agreements will do. You lower your tariff, and we will lower ours over whatever timetable causes the least disruption.
The big plan of the international elite is to have three trading blocs -- European Union, American Union and Pacific or Asian Union -- each run by a super national body such as a Supreme Council. This triumvirate would be the new world order operating out of the United Nations.
Already you can see the parts falling into place -- a European Union, our troops under foreign control, treaties subjecting our citizens to international jurisdiction and now NAFTA.
Do not fall for the ridicule leveled at the opposition to NAFTA. Those selling out the sovereignty of the United States are the misguided or unpatriotic ones. NAFTA Is a bungee jump with the cord tied around your neck.
George W. Bauernschmidt Jr.
I am writing in response to your Sept. 12 article, "Hordes of baby rockfish in bay are biggest crop in 40 years."
I don't understand why charter boat customers should be allowed to keep more fish than recreational fishermen. Aren't their reasons for catching the fish also recreational?
But I do think the charter boat season should be longer because different people fish each day, and I think everyone should go fishing in a bay or the ocean some time.
I really don't think that just because the rockfish are plentiful this year it means we should all go out and kill them. If we kill them all now, instead of waiting a few years, it might take even longer for them to repopulate.
No one should be allowed to fish in areas where the fish population is in danger, especially recreational fishermen (including charter boat renters).
These fishermen don't use the fish for anything more important than stuffing them and hanging them on the wall. At least commercial fishermen use the fish they catch.
I think recreational fishermen should fish for fish like bluegills. Because of their small size, bluegills aren't good for commercial fishing but are plentiful and taste good.
Leslie C. Reed
Today we are being constantly reminded of the virtue of fairness. In labor relations, in sports, in politics, in race relations, in health and so on.
But what is fairness when media reporting can destroy an individual's reputation without so much as a by your leave?
Is it fair that this can result from someone's right to denounce another in public and still remain anonymous?
The famous make better targets for such actions, although no one is really immune. When a well known contributing member of our society is vilified in the press, and the law states that his accusers may not be identified, then where is the fairness in our society?
It is indeed a travesty to protect an accuser, when his or her accusations can ruin the reputation of any individual.
Even though vindication may occur in the end, there is no question that a doubt has been created in minds of many people.
It is no wonder that America has become the home of a money hungry legal profession when such actions contribute to the inclination of a get-rich-quick society.
Otto C. Beyer
Recently, The Sun carried a picture of containers of methadone stolen by an employee with the purpose of illicit sale. This situation had produced a tragedy -- the death of a small child.
In the Sept. 9 Sun there was a list of recommendations by Mayor Schmoke's drug task force. No. 1 on that list was to make methadone more readily available.
It seems to me that for the above situation to be possible there had to be some very casual handling and little, if any, accountability.
Would the task force please address that before making more methadone available for this type of abuse?
Virginia B. Dentry
Time to End Cycle of Violence and Pain
When I was a very young soldier in Korea in 1951, one of the areas that was universally feared was the "Morning Morbidity Report" the account of deaths, wounded and missing in action.
As word was received of fellow soldiers who were listed in the Morning Morbidity Report, there was momentary anguish, pain and sorrow and then, many of us brushed it aside with what became a perennial bromide: "That's the way the ball bounces."
The spate of senseless murders in Baltimore and other urban areas of blacks, especially young black males, caused me to reflect on morbidity reports statewide.
I was particularly saddened and appalled by the brutal murder of Cynthia D. Gilliam and her daughter, Donnette D. Smith, and the vicious wounding of a second daughter, Jacqueline D. Parker, on Sept. 22. All of Monumental City is diminished and marred egregiously by the wave of iniquitous, brazen, heartless and calamitous violence and terror.
While it is historically true that a persistent, encrusted and pernicious racism, operational and institutional, has created the socio-economic and educational conditions that afflict black Americans, it, too, is true as this is acknowledged, that we as black citizens must do more ourselves to end the cycle of violence, terror and death which beset black communities. Other than AIDS, among blacks between the age of 16 and 35, shooting is the leading cause of death.
The time, I believe, has come for us as black citizens to take the lead, in demonstrable, concrete and palpable ways, void of vacuous and grandiloquent rhetoric and breast-beating, to end the cycle of pain and death of young blacks in Baltimore and throughout our nation as a result of thoughtless and reprehensible violence.
In the light of the cruel deaths of Ms. Gilliam and her daughter, I believe the following efforts would be immensely helpful:
Black churches, Masons, sororities, fraternities, civic groups should serve as mentors and visible support systems for children.
An activation of viable and functioning neighborhood watch stations in communities hard-hit by criminal-assaultive behavior.
Greater attention by the media, print and non-print, to the positive accomplishments of black youths in impoverished and crime-beset communities who are achieving in spite of the odds.
A concentrated and expanded emphasis on adult education within the school setting and in non-school settings churches and non-profit agencies that focus on fundamental skills of reading, writing, computing, communication and self-esteem.
Pervading the four elements I have indicted is the urgent need to provide jobs and equality of opportunity for those disproportionately black and poor who are caught in a web of hopeless despair and societal alienation.
A hopeless person who has no socio-economic stake in our society is a dangerous person. It is in the interest of all of us, black and white, to begin, in earnest, the process of community-building and wholeness.
Samuel L. Banks