Arrogant for Bush to veto the war bill
On Wednesday, this nation's House of Representatives approved a bill that would extend funding for the war in Iraq and set a timetable for troops to begin heading home. On Thursday, the Senate passed the same bill. But the bill will likely soon be vetoed by President Bush ("Senators set up veto showdown," April 27).
If the president vetoes this bill, he will again reject the views expressed by the majority of voters of last November, who demanded that our troops be brought home in a timely fashion from Iraq.
The president continues to reject not only the views of the majority in both houses of Congress but to ignore the will of the electorate. How arrogant can a president be?
The common-sense answer to a veto from the electorate and its representatives should not be to give the president a bill that is more to his liking but to begin impeachment hearings immediately.
This president deserves no better fate than impeachment.
Peter J. Schap Jr.
Cutting off funding may bring war home
The Iraq funding bill the Democrats wrote is treacherous ("Senators set up veto showdown," April 27).
It would end up bringing our soldiers home from Iraq. But what would follow?
It would be dangerous to our nation and our families to let the war come over here.
I am only in seventh grade, but I agree that President Bush should veto this bill.
The writer is a home-schooled seventh-grader.
Iraqis may not want more U.S. meddling
I may sound naive but I wonder if our president is cognizant of the fact that the Iraqis might want us out of their country, along with our attempt to impose democracy on Iraq ("Rice warns Congress on Iraq," April 30).
I was not opposed to the war until I learned it was based on lies.
President Bush ought to concede to his enormous mistake and rectify it by bringing home our troops as soon as possible.
Use price controls to limit oil profits
ExxonMobil Corp.'s first-quarter profit of $9.3 billion is obscene ("Record Exxon profit," April 27).
It is obscene because, for the most part, the money came from families struggling to operate their automobiles and heat their homes. Many of these families are struggling to make ends meet.
It is the government's responsibility to correct this injustice.
An excess-profits tax is not the answer. All this would do would be to give the politicians more money to pour into their favorite pork barrel projects.
The answer to the problem involves two steps.
Step one is for the politicians to get out of bed with the oil refining companies.
Step two is that it is absolutely imperative that some sort of price controls be put on gasoline and home heating fuel.
If this causes the refineries to lose money, they can take the loss out of their previous exorbitant profits.
Wesley Blickenstaff Sr.
House did impeach President Clinton
I must say that I was confused after reading Thomas F. Schaller's column "GOP dragged us into a decade of political decline" (Opinion * Commentary, April 25).
He writes that there was a "ham-handed attempt to impeach" President Bill Clinton during his second term in office.
I have to correct the good professor by noting that Mr. Clinton was impeached during that term by the House of Representatives. But he was never convicted and removed by the Senate.
Gun rights shield us against tyranny
Advocates of gun control have their hearts in the right place.
They point to the fact that many crimes are committed with a gun, that the majority of armed robberies are committed with a gun, and that the vast majority of murders are committed with a gun. These are known facts.
Therefore, they reason, if we could get rid of guns, the crimes committed with these instruments would also vanish ("Stronger gun limits could curb tragedies," letters, April 26).
And that may very well be the case. But the framers of the Constitution did not include the Second Amendment in the Bill of Rights to provide protection from criminals, per se.
The Second Amendment was written to protect the public from the possible tyranny of their own government.
The framers knew that an unarmed citizenry is defenseless against an army controlled by the government.
Today, we are lucky to live in a world where the American government does its best to protect the people.
However, without the protections afforded to us by the Bill of Rights, the government could turn to tyranny.
The Second Amendment gives the citizenry the means to defend its unalienable rights.
Show compassion for the mentally ill
I find it a hopeful sign to hear a few voices speak of compassion for Seung-Hui Cho, both in life and in death. And the reminder from the writer of the letter "Rejection by peers prompts Cho's wrath" (April 26) that we must respect every human's inherent dignity should be heeded.
However, before we put all the blame on Mr. Cho's peers for his development into a killer, we must remember that very few adults in his life apparently knew how to handle his disability, either.
Our society, and much of our world, stigmatizes those who are different. We must hasten change by finding ways to include every individual in a meaningful way.
Let's start by fully integrating our schools to include everyone and providing ways for children to learn to be compassionate and respectful.
We need to see compassionate, respectful behavior modeled in all forms of the media, and even in video games.
We must, at the same time, find a compassionate model of mental health care to support and destigmatize mental illness.
Trimpers have given boardwalk good ride
I read about the possible closing of Trimper Rides in Ocean City with great sadness ("Trimpers consider ending a long ride," April 27).
My fondest memory occurred in August 1979. I was standing on the carousel supporting my 9-month-old daughter, Sara, on the horse as she was preparing to enjoy her very first merry-go-round ride.
One of the Trimpers was walking throughout the carousel collecting tickets as the ride began. He saw Sara laughing as her horse went up and down, up and down.
He turned to me and asked, "First time?" I nodded yes.
He smiled and said, "No charge," and moved on.
Sara is now 28 years old, and I still think about how Mr. Trimper's kindness made this event even more memorable.
Thank you, Mr. Trimper.
Mary Lee A. Stritch