Ethnic images of WW II are still skewed
As an American and a disabled veteran of World War II, I resent the misguiding remarks made by William Eckert (Other Voices, Dec. 7) in his column, "49 years later, remembering the Day of Infamy." It is evident that he cannot distinguish between the enemy of World War II and loyal Americans.
I was in the Ardennes campaign. Mr. Ecker wrote: "Did the Japanese-Americans feel more sorrow, disillusionment and dashed expectations than the parents who lost sons in the Pearl Harbor attack?" It would have been in poor taste had he asked: "Did the German-Americans feel more sorrow, disillusionment and dashed expectations than the parents who lost sons in the Battle of the Bulge?" But his words make about as much sense.
Mr. Eckert only needs to read the report of the Commission on Wartime Relocation and Internment of Civilians to learn that his statement - "on the mainland, a sad old man was being compensated for America's reaction to the Pearl Harbor attack" ` is untrue. The congressional and presidential apology is over the denial of civil rights. The congressional commission said that Americans were evacuated without justifiable cause and interned in relocation (a euphemism) camps like prisoners.
The commission stated that there was not one single act of disloyalty by the Japanese-Americans all during the war. In fact Japanese-Americans volunteered for the Army to defend their country and as an ethnic group received proportionally more Purple Hearts and medals for bravery than any other group. I was one of them. Our military record is prominent in the National Archives.
Let's bring our young soldiers home; we can prevent war by conscripting a defense line for Saudi Arabia that will never have to fight. Who should be in this line? - George Bush's children, Dan Quayle, all oil executives, members of Congress and all of their country club back-slappers.
Meanwhile, let's start a substitute energy program. President Carter, an engineer, the last president to have an energy policy, could handle this very well.
Make the U.S. an independent, sovereign nation once again.
Contrary to the photo and article that appeared in the Dec. 11 paper, there is no statue of Noah Walker in Druid Hill Park or anywhere in Baltimore. The statue in the photograph and described in the article is George Washington. It was sculpted in 1857 and placed in a niche of Noah Walker's clothing business on East Baltimore Street. After Mr. Walker's death, it was given to the city. Since the statue has no back, it was placed in Druid Hill Park within a pedestal and niche supplied by Enoch Pratt.
Since Baltimore is known historically as the "Monumental City," I hope you will be more accurate in the future on reports about our monuments.
Fred B. Shoken
Living in Israel
I have just received a copy of The Evening Sun dated Nov. 29 with a letter bearing my name printed in the Forum. I did not write that letter; it expresses some sentiments I do not feel, and I request that you print this letter to correct a grievous mistake.
I recently moved to Israel and hope to spend much of each year here because of strong religious convictions. I also have many close family members, including a daughter and her family, living here. I do not intend to leave America ` where I will retain a residence and citizenship. I love the U.S. It is my country, and I am proud to be an American citizen.
Yes, I do object strongly to the manner in which your paper and others distort the news about Israel. The Palestinians throw rocks ` not stones. And rocks kill and maim. I object to the U.N.'s selecting Israel for condemnation and special investigations when it is common knowledge that mass slaughter (on a much larger scale) has occurred and has been ignored in countries all over the world. I am strongly dissatisfied with the position that President Bush and Secretary of State Baker have taken regarding Israel.
It is my right as a citizen to object and make my views known. But I did not leave the United States, although I object to some aspects of life in the U.S. I remain a proud U.S. citizen, a World War II veteran, a taxpayer and a supporter of most U.S. policies.
Deficits and layoffs
I was surprised and dismayed to read of Governor Schaefer's plan to layoff some 1,800 state employees. Like most citizens, I share the concern for the projected budget deficit. But I do not share the governor's choice of solutions.
I'm not suggesting that balancing our state's budget will be easy or that it can be done in a way that pleases everyone. But it hardly seems fair to place so much of the burden on 1,800 state employees when there are other alternatives.