Criticism of Likud isn't anti-Israel bias
I have read with great interest your recent coverage of events in the Middle East.
I applaud the mix of opinions regarding this sensitive and often emotional issue. I especially welcome the publication of columns such as the most recent one by Jonathan Power. ("Losing war for peace in the Middle East," Aug. 29.) Only by allowing a mix of opinions to be heard can The Sun assist its readers to formulate an intelligent, well-informed decision about the region and the involvement of the United States.
A recent letter-writer has castigated the editorial staff for publishing articles and opinion pieces that show an anti-Israel bias. Might I suggest that because a writer does not agree 100 percent with the Likud government's policies, and/or the continued support of such policies by our government, this does not constitute an anti-Israel bias.
Another recent writer has wondered where the Arabs and Arab-Americans are who support peace, and why their voices ZTC are not heard. As an American of Palestinian descent, I support peace, and fervently hope that this letter is published. However, I do not support pro-Israel bias in reporting, and more importantly, I do not support Israeli actions that violate the Fourth Geneva Convention (i.e., transfer of civilian population by an occupier into its occupied territories) and the continued aid provided to Israel despite this violation.
Andrea Eadeh Wills
Perfect princess, imperfect person
Diana, Princess of Wales, had many human flaws, yet whenever we saw her, she was flawless. In her life, in her deeds, both public and private, she did it better than any of us could. She, who was so human. We were always in awe of that, and even more so now at the time of her death.
She had been the bride who really lived the ideal story, the myth, for us, despite the fact that reality extinguished her hopeful marriage. When each of us was married, we became her that day -- but only for a day. Our emotions then were tremendously powerful. We didn't know where they were coming from. And we still don't today, on grappling with her death. My emotions, I think, are about wanting to be perfect, wanting to be beautiful, wanting to have some of her glamour. She as so imperfect, and yet more perfect than any of us. I grieve for the perfect bride, the perfect princess, the perfect humanitarian, the imperfect person.
Diana's beauty was beside the point
While I feel a real sense of sorrow about the death of Princess Diana, I cannot help but notice all the attention that has been focused on her appearance by her personal friends and journalists. Their comments seem to point to an inevitable conclusion: Princess Diana's beauty was one of her greatest attributes and, therefore, her death was all the more tragic.
It led me to wonder: If Diana had been merely average-looking, much less unattractive, would her death be any less shocking?
I hope that the answer would be no, but I am keenly aware of that unfortunate and insidious tendency to equate beauty with worth. However, we should not allow that tendency to obscure or diminish the real tragedy of her death.
Princess Diana was, by most accounts, a person of grace, decency, good humor and compassion -- the kind of person this harsh world can least afford to lose. The real tragedy, as Alice Steinbach observed, is that now there is "darkness where her light once shone."
Had Diana not been considered one of the "beautiful people," we would have no less reason to mourn her loss.
Don't politicize Pocomoke problems
In an audacious display of political hyperbole, Joyce Terhes, chairman of the Maryland Republican Party, wrote a letter criticizing the Glendening administration's protection of the environment and handling of the Pfiesteria outbreak in the Pocomoke River.
With little more than a year before the 1998 gubernatorial election, it seems that the Republican Party has suddenly become an advocate for the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries.
But before Ms. Terhes sounds the bell of righteous indignation too loudly, she should consider the position of the party's most prominent candidate for governor, Ellen Sauerbrey, with respect the environment.
Ms. Sauerbrey has consistently played a theme of deregulation first, worry about the bay later, which is at odds with any genuine concern about pollution in the Chesapeake. Nor have any of the other Republican candidates sounded the environmental alarm which Ms. Terhes has attempted to ring.
If Ms. Terhes and the Republican Party are to be taken seriously on the environment, then the Republican candidates must sincerely express that concern. Otherwise, Ms. Terhes appears as another politician who is more concerned about gaining political mileage than addressing a serious problem with the Pocomoke River.
Taras Andrew Vizzi
Helms stance on Weld subverts Constitution
When a president of the United States nominates someone to fill an important position, Congress' constitutional role is to "advise and consent." A Senate committee, based on investigation and hearings, may then give or withhold its consent.
Sen. Jesse Helms' arrogant refusal to allow former Gov. William F. Weld a hearing, or to give his own committee members an opportunity to perform their constitutional duty, is outrageous. This issue is not another inter-party political squabble since both Senator Helms and Governor Weld are Republicans and many Republican senators support Weld's nomination to be ambassador to Mexico. The issue here is the ability of an aging and anachronistic Senate chairman to subvert both the Constitution and the Senate by substituting his personal prejudice for democratic process.
This tyranny violates both democratic principles and constitutional intent and Senate Republicans should help Sen. Richard G. Lugar ensure that this abuse of power doesn't become precedent.
Roger C. Kostmayer