Oliver North is not an American heroWhy is Oliver North...

The Forum

November 01, 1991

Oliver North is not an American hero

Why is Oliver North looked upon as a hero? He admits to deceiving the American people and lying to their elected representatives. He admits to giving missiles and weapons to Iran which, at the time, held innocent Americans hostage and was an avowed enemy of the "Great Satan," the U.S. He further acknowledges subverting U.S. policy in Latin America.

These acts are contrary to the will of the American people and the policy of the elected government. North has never been elected, by anyone, to any leadership position. Based on these facts, a better case could be made for North's being a traitor than a patriot.

This career military officer justifies his actions with two rationales. First, he uses the Nuremberg war criminals' defense by saying he was just "following orders," a claim denied by his superiors. Second, North arrogantly suggests that he knows what's best for America and that the ends justified the means.

Every zealot, and most tyrants, are convinced that they know what is best for their country and their countrymen. The issue here is not sincerity; it's respect for the law and the basic tenets of an open, free and constitutional democracy.

If what Mr. North now says is true, Presidents Reagan and Bush both may have committed impeachable offenses. If North's claims are false, history should view him as a dangerous egomaniac who felt he was above the law.

Roger C. Kostmayer


A last memorial

The souvenir of Memorial Stadium ("One last look") in a recent issue of the Evening Sun was full of interesting information. But I looked in vain for some reference to the origin of its name.

Apparently the stadium was not meant to honor the war dead, although at the time of its completion that was given as its purpose. A fallen soldier whose name is inscribed on a memorial achieves a kind of immortality. When all who knew him have passed on, he remains a person who once lived. He becomes more than just an anonymous number in war statistics; his name is there for future generations. A nation that cannot remember its war dead will not have its sorrows to seek.

Perhaps it is just as well that the new stadium will not be known as Memorial Stadium II, since no one remembers what the original Memorial Stadium was supposed to commemorate.

Frank Matthews


Radon's dangers

Timothy Wheeler is to be commended for his excellent Oct. 14 article on radon, the No.2 cause of lung cancer. As individuals, we can become informed about radon, test for it and take corrective action if the levels are elevated. However, our lawmakers need to get involved, too.

What concerns me is the number of professions with credentials in home building and repair whose knowledge of radon management is so limited that they unknowingly may be causing potential health hazards. Ideally, everyone involved with building, repairing or altering the foundation of a home in any way should be proficient in radon management.

Lawmakers must develop a comprehensive program for radon management. We should be able to hire anyone licensed in the state of Maryland, confident that the work will be done to code, and our health and safety will not be compromised. Every one of us has the right to be protected from hazardous materials in our homes and places of employment.

Marie Ford


Feminist agenda

Former political director of the Democratic National Committee Ann F. Lewis writes that "Feminists will not forget the treatment of Anita Hill by incumbents, including male Democrats" (Other Voices, Oct. 17).

During her reign of terror as political director of DNC, a 50 percent "gender quota" was imposed on party posts and delegates. Combined with denial of financial and technical assistance to those candidates who did not support a national ERA, it led to the estrangement of DNC from the grass roots.

Now, Baltimore County Del. Joseph Bartenfelder has prepared legislation which would ban segregated ballots by "race, color, creed, sex or national origin." A federal judge had ruled four years ago that voting rights were restricted by Democrats' implementation of a 50 percent gender quota.

up to the attorney general to uphold the Constitution, not simply to go along with the feminist agenda.

H. Kokkonen


Two of a kind

David Duke has been condemned by the Republicans for his blatant appeals to racism and his stance against affirmative action "quotas."

Beginning with Willie Horton, how does this differ from the philosophy of the present Republican administration?

Fred Davis


Mikulski's stand

In reference to Sen. Barbara Mikulski's vote against Clarence Thomas, The Evening Sun (Oct. 18) reported that Joyce L.

Terhes, Maryland Republican Party chairwoman, stated: "I think it's disgusting what she said . . ."

Nothing could have been more disgusting than the Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee who listened but never heard Anita Hill.

Mrs. Tehres went on to say: "And I think that the people of Maryland are going to remember what she [Mikulski] said and how she acted."

I sure hope so. We need more heroes in the U.S. Senate like Barbara Mikulski. She has in the past and will in the future have my vote and the votes of thousands of Marylanders concerned about the future of our country.

Judy Lipchin


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