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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

THE BALTIMORE SUN

It's Democrats who circumvent electoral process

I read with disgust California Gov. Gray Davis' claim that the recall election "is part of an ongoing national effort to steal elections" by Republicans ("Davis says recall is 'power grab,'" Aug. 20).

Although the claim that Republicans are "stealing" elections by circumventing the electoral process has become a rallying cry for Democrats, it is not supported by the facts.

It was Al Gore and a liberal Florida Supreme Court that sought to circumvent state election law and the U.S. Constitution to "find" additional votes for Mr. Gore in 2000.

In 2001, it was Democrats who took control of the U.S. Senate, not through an election but by convincing a Republican senator to switch parties. It was Democrats and another liberal state supreme court in New Jersey who ignored the Constitution and rewrote election laws in order to replace doomed Sen. Robert G. Torricelli with a more electable candidate in 2002.

In Texas, it is Democratic state senators who fled their state, in violation of state law, to prevent constitutionally mandated redistricting that would more accurately reflect Texas' Republican majority.

In the U.S. Senate, Democrats are denying President Bush his constitutional authority to appoint judges.

Taken together, these actions reveal that it is actually the Democrats attempting to bypass the electoral process to attain powers they failed to win at the ballot box.

Todd Eberly

Columbia

Suspending students can improve learning

In response to the suggestion by Christopher N. Maher, education director of Advocates for Children and Youth, that suspending a child sends him or her away from a learning environment ("Student conduct policy studied," Aug. 18), allow me to speak for the 95 percent of students whose learning environment is too often destroyed by disruptive students: Sometimes suspending a student actually restores the learning environment for a class.

Tim Kerr

Baltimore

Suicide bomber truly a terrorist

I doubt that Israeli officials called Hamas and Islamic Jihad "militant groups" as The Sun did ("At least 18 die as blast tears Jerusalem bus," Aug. 20). They are terrorist groups, proudly claiming responsibility for this horrendous act against men, women, children and infants.

These innocent victims, returning from prayer at Judaism's most holy site, were killed to induce terror and fear - fear to ride a bus, fear to go shopping, fear to go about normal daily activities.

And consider that the bomber walked to the middle of the bus. He passed the families, children and infants sitting there. He saw their faces. He heard their laughter and saw some reciting psalms as many in that holy city do as they travel. Then he detonated the bomb.

He knew his victims were not soldiers or combatants. He was not a militant. He was a terrorist - and The Sun should identify him as such.

Avi Frydman

Baltimore

Cut off all support for Palestinians

We have all heard the terrible news of the suicide bombing in Jerusalem on Tuesday. We have all seen the horrible scenes on TV showing the innocent civilians, and especially the children, being carried away ("At least 18 die as blast tears Jerusalem bus," Aug. 20).

The murderers of Hamas and the other Arab terrorist organizations have publicly stated that they are only interested in the eventual destruction of Israel.

And now perhaps many Sun readers can understand why Israel has to take many steps, including building a security wall, to try to provide security for its citizens.

In the name of common sense and peace, all countries should at once stop supporting the Palestinian Arabs until they crack down on terrorists.

Donald Sussman

Owings Mills

Bush's challenge answered by bomb

President Bush challenged the anti-American forces to "bring it on." Unfortunately, they heard him ("Truck bombing kills 20 at U.N. post in Baghdad," Aug. 20).

McNair Taylor

Baltimore

Future will vindicate president's policy

Ten years from now, when a prosperous and democratic Iraq has served as a model for the democracies governing Iran, Palestine and Syria, those now criticizing President Bush will have sunk into well-deserved oblivion.

Harris James George

Timonium

Crude pop culture does teens disservice

If there is any lingering doubt about the negative influence "entertainers" have on our youngsters, one need only read Rashod D. Ollison's review of the "Rock the Mic" performances, which he kindly terms "overdone" ("'Rock the Mic' performances overload crowd with promos," Aug. 16).

We can't expect teen-agers to appreciate the music their parents like. But lyrics such as "Let a choppa go ploooowww to yo' melon/Now the plasma is oozin' outta yo cerebellum" are not only a far cry from "Moonlight becomes you," but a sad commentary on what kids are being taught is "cool."

Giving thugs center stage to glamorize drugs, sex and violence, "weed, hos and alcohol," cowardly couched beneath the protection of free speech, should not be acceptable.

By allowing it, we are doing a terrible disservice to our teen-agers.

Cooky McClung

Chestertown

Find other ways to control animals

The chairman of Audubon Maryland-D.C. was incorrect that people were not enraged by the extermination of the nutria at the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge last year because the nutria weren't aesthetically appealing ("State must reduce swan population," letters, Aug. 12).

I was appalled by their extermination, just as I am now appalled by the planned mass killing of the state's mute swans. I am also appalled and saddened by the recently announced expansion of deer hunts in Howard County.

But it seems people working within government natural resources and wildlife agencies can think of only one solution - the final solution - for animals they deem unwanted.

Sharon Drescher

Glenelg

Judge was a leader in law and politics

The death of the honorable Edward S. Northrop brings back memories of a gentleman I met back in 1955 ("Edward S. Northrop, 92, chief judge of U.S. District Court," Aug. 14).

He had just been elected as a state senator from Montgomery County and I had been elected as a member of the House of Delegates. He was a Democrat and I was a Republican. But because he was a state senator, when he spoke, we legislators listened. He was always well-informed, and his "gravitas" in presenting his argument compelled respect.

As a Republican, I take my hat off to Judge Northrop - an amicable, competent leader in law, government and the military. He will be missed very much.

Samuel A. Culotta

Baltimore

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