Clinton: 'a liar' or 'freak of nature'I am writing this...

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September 04, 1992

Clinton: 'a liar' or 'freak of nature'

I am writing this letter with a sense of outrage after listening to Bill Clinton's speech before the American Legion Aug. 26.

After hearing him say that, despite opposing the war in Vietnam, he was never against the heroic men and women who served in the war, I have to question either his veracity or his memory. I don't remember anyone from the anti-war movement who supported the military during the Vietnam War.

By Bill Clinton's own recollections, he was a vocal and fervent supporter of the anti-war movement while studying in England.

Has everyone forgotten what the anti-war movement was like in the '60s, particularly in Europe? I haven't. As one who fought and was wounded in South Vietnam in 1968, I remember it very well. We were vilified and called "war-mongers" and "baby-killers."

There were even cases of assaults on veterans by angry protesters. There was not only no support for those who carried out our policies in Southeast Asia, there was only contempt and anger.

Anyone who said that he supported our Marines but was against the war would have been laughed out of the anti-war movement.

In his letter of 1969 to the ROTC, he wrote that he and many others found themselves "still loving their country but loathing the military." Those of us who came back from Vietnam, even those on crutches or in wheelchairs, remember that "loathing" very well.

My son served in the Army during the recent gulf war. While there was some opposition to the gulf war, the protesters made a point of distancing themselves from the anti-war movement of the '60s.

We were constantly told that while they were against the war, they supported the men and women who were serving there.

They pointed out that this was in direct opposition to those who protested in the '60s. We must remember this distinction.

There was no support for the military among the anti-war movement back then. Anyone who says today that he was an active member of the anti-war movement in the '60s but honored those who fought the war back then is either an outright liar now

or was a freak of nature back then.

Jon Davis

Baltimore

Cruel GOP attack on women

Republicans have adopted a presidential campaign strategy of showcasing Barbara Bush and Marilyn Quayle as traditional women who remain at home.

Certainly women who are able to be full-time mothers and homemakers deserve the same dignity and respect as women who choose other paths.

But staying at home is a luxury American women cannot afford. Most women work outside the home for exactly the same reason men do -- because they have to in order to support themselves and their families.

To ignore that fact and tell us that a "good" woman should leave the work force to care for her children adds a vicious twist, as does the bashing of Hillary Clinton by a variety of Republicans.

These are attacks on all women who work outside the home and an attempt to pit women against one another by exploiting their deepest fears and anxieties.

It is the 1992 version of Willie Horton, code words and all, to divide the voters for one candidate's political gain.

It is certainly not fair to women. Between responsibilities at home and on the job and caring for children, women's lives are often far more complicated, pressured and exhausting than the life of many corporate executives. To suggest that such women do it out of selfishness is galling.

The Republicans have seized upon an odd and cruel campaign tactic: using Hillary Clinton as a symbol of a strong, working woman who needs to be put in her "place."

The obvious intention is to divert attention from the economic suffering of millions of Americans and from the fact that George Bush has no domestic agenda other than recycled

Reaganomics.

Ernest R. Grecco

Baltimore

The writer is president of the Metropolitan Baltimore Council of AFL-CIO Unions.

Family values

Perhaps the phrase "family values" means different things to different people.

You may walk into a K mart establishment and see a sign that reads "family values," which means there's a bargain in sight.

My idea of "family values" is the manner in which I was raised, mainly in the 1930s, when the Great Depression was hanging over many like a dark cloud.

We lived in a 12-room house on Springdale Avenue in prosperous times -- six children, two parents. Fortunately, my dad was able to save our home through the difficult times.

As the children got married, they lived in the house. Some had children there. My mother cooked and cleaned for all, always cheerful with a smile upon her dear countenance.

There was only one bathroom we all shared amicably, and we got along with love and caring, helping each other.

When the cloud was lifted and all the children moved to their own places, we remained a close family for a long time.

This to me was "family values." This is what I remember from my childhood and is part of my heritage.

Rae Miller Heneson

Baltimore

Why destroy sparrows to save bluebirds?

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