Bashing Bush betrays bias beyond belief

The Sun's editorial condemning and belittling President Bush's actions to resolve the Iraqi crisis through diplomatic means disturbed me greatly ("War at the threshold," March 18).

I find it sad that the editors of this once-great newspaper -- Maryland's newspaper of record and an institution for more than a century and a half -- could so fundamentally misinterpret or ignore the facts that have brought us to the current situation.

I respectfully recommend that the editors carefully review British Prime Minister Tony Blair's statement to Britain's House of Commons on Tuesday, as that body debated its war resolution.

I cannot articulate the facts more clearly than Mr. Blair did.

David Robinette


To quote The Sun's editorial "War at the threshold": "President Bush spoke eloquently last night. It was a welcome departure from his usual appearances."

The Sun's dislike for the president is so strong that it can't pay him a compliment without following up with a derogatory remark.

It was hard for me to read the rest of the editorial. Since The Sun's views are so biased, why read on?

Murray Spear


Invasion of Iraq is wrong, obscene

The Sun should be commended for the editorial "War at the threshold" (March 18).

I thank you for speaking the truth. It gave hope to my heavy heart on Tuesday morning.

This war is wrong; this war is obscene. We did not give diplomacy a chance.

Lois F. Sexton


Beginning of war shouldn't end debate

I was alarmed to read that Rep. Benjamin L. Cardin -- whom I admire in many respects -- believes debate in Congress about the war should end once war has begun ("Members of Congress unite to support troops," March 18).

Does "supporting the troops" mean we must support wrong-headed, even disastrous, foreign policy? Is it not the duty of citizens in a democracy, especially members of Congress, to call the president to account for his actions?

Do we forsake the separation of powers whenever the president orders a strike?

Perhaps Mr. Cardin and his colleagues in Congress should consider that the best way to support the troops is to bring them home unscathed by a needless, ill-conceived war.

Andrew McBee


The tools of tyrants can't stop despotism

Foreign policy by threat, insult, condemnation and ultimatum is not diplomacy. These are the tools of tyrants. How can we rid the world of despotism when we have fallen into its habits?

I love America. I pray for the safety of our troops as well as the children of Iraq. Yet I can see why so many countries around the world are appalled by and afraid of the U. S. policy of pre-emptive warfare with total disregard for the opinion of many of our allies.

Will Iran or North Korea be next?

Michael Caughlin


Renting museum is bad deal for city

It is difficult to feel sorry for the city's financial plight. The city expended millions to build Port Discovery on city property, which the city leased to a children's museum for $1 a year. The museum lost money, and the city now agrees to pay the museum annual rent of $360,000 to take back its own property ("For school, city rents back a $1 museum for $540,000," March 15).

If the city needs Port Discovery to house a magnet high school, why not have the city condemn the museum's $1-a-year leasehold interest and let a jury decide how much rent the city should pay for its own property?

Harris James George


Firing fisheries chief is disturbing move

I read with some dismay that Eric C. Schwaab had been dismissed as the head of the fisheries service of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources ("Fisheries chief fired after bay decree," March 16).

This is an unfortunate loss for the state not only because of Mr. Schwaab's abilities as a manager, but his stature as a man of integrity, strength, conviction and compromise.

My own experience with Mr. Schwaab began when we worked together, along with a committee comprised of other interests, in authoring the report "Biological Diversity in Maryland Forests."

Although he was new to the forest service and forestry-related issues at the time, Mr. Schwaab undertook this task with zeal, and was notable for his ability to quickly grasp the complexities of any situation without imposing his personal views.

And throughout his subsequent service with the Maryland Forest Service I always found him open and receptive to all sides of an issue. He seemed to take delight in delving into each issue in a way that was admirable.

Nonetheless, as a dedicated public servant, he would, when so directed, implement to the best of his ability the policies and strategies of any administration he served, always in an apolitical way.

Now, Mr. Schwaab's abrupt dismissal should ring out as a call to action to anyone or any organization with an interest in conservation in Maryland.

The day of the principled, compassionate public servant may not be over -- for there are many others who are equally capable -- but the clear message has been sent that disagreement with the current administration is a fatal affliction.

Gary A. Griffith


The writer is a former president of the Maryland Association of Forest Conservancy District Boards and former chairman of Cecil County's Planning Commission.

Small fortunes from big crimes

A recent Sun headline read, "From sacrifices, small fortunes" (March 13).

Why not call the Arab Liberation Front's practice of awarding generous financial windfalls to the families of Palestinian terrorists what it really is: murder for hire.

Cheryl Snyder Taragin


No need to subsidize state horse industry

Again The Sun called to our attention the plight of Maryland's "horse racing industry" ("Trojan horse," editorial March 18). And various state subsidies to meet its crisis have been proposed.

But other industries, such as the snow shovel and suntan oil industries, are able to weather fluctuations in consumer interest.

If horse racing merits state aid, then church bingo and back-alley craps games also deserve public funding.

If slot machines are able to bail out our government, should some machines be in the State House, City Hall, libraries, art galleries and country clubs?

Robert Y. O'Brien

Severna Park

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