Central StoryWho are the multicultural "zealots" and...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

December 29, 1992

Central Story

Who are the multicultural "zealots" and "ideologues" whom Rea Knisbacher wrote about in a Dec. 19 letter? And is she actually implying that no cultures other than Western ones have lived under traditional concepts of due process? Surely that would be arrogant.

People in many parts of the world do, indeed, aspire to the political freedoms that have come to us from the Western tradition which has become uniquely American as it has been tested by centuries of struggle by Africa's descendants to make freedom real for all Americans.

Why is it that this very American feature of our "Western" tradition is still omitted by so many who fear multi-culturalism?

Speaking as a European-American, I suggest that we need first of all to listen to the pain that so many of our citizens have experienced because of their exclusion from the central story.

Holding America's people together begins here.

Loretta Kreider Andrews

Baltimore

Blind World

December marks the fifth anniversary of the intifada, the uprising of the Palestinian people in the occupied territories in Israel.

During this month, six Palestinians (including an 8-year-old girl) have been killed and more than 50 injured when the Israeli forces fired randomly at the crowds.

The crime was marching in the street and throwing stones to protest the expulsion of 417 Palestinian men to the safety zone bordering Southern Lebanon.

By deporting these men, the Israeli government violated . . . international laws. The act was condemned by the United Nations.

Anyone who looks objectively at the status of the Palestinian people in Israel finds oppression and deprivation of basic human rights.

For the past five years, the Palestinians have been fighting with stones for their rights. They are facing Israeli soldiers who fight back with curfews, imprisonment, mass deportations and guns.

The youngsters who throw the stones are crying for justice. They know that the world is blindly ignorant but hope that the world is not deaf as well.

Nael M. Soudi

Baltimore

Sanctity of Life

The hubris of The Sun is alarming. Your Dec. 19 editorial, "Terrorists Take Charge," appeared to have taken the position of judge, juror and perhaps a god of sorts.

The last paragraph refers to the Israeli police officer who was murdered by the fanatical Hamas group as "just one murder," suggesting that should not impede peace negotiations.

As a tenth-generation ancestral daughter of our country's founders and patriots -- their mission being freedom, safety, peace and religious choice -- I find your words, "just one murder," un-American and grossly insensitive to the sanctity of life.

Just one life can be an Einstein, a Gandhi, a Jesus, a Martin Luther King, a Mother Teresa. The list is endless because each life is full of possibility and promise.

The New York Times thought "just one murder" was significant enough to write about in detail.

An infant had been beheaded after its mother, who had been repeatedly raped by Serbs, meekly asked if she could return to breast feed it. A Turkish child was killed by neo-Nazis, Somalia is dying, children on our streets are killed by gunfire and each of those deaths diminishes all of us.

Numbers of deaths merely account for every individual's right to life having been violated by a world unwilling to accept its ethical responsibility to speak up for each and every person unprotected.

It is when every life means something more than a number that peace will prevail. At present, it would appear that life is measured by each country's marketable resource on this globe.

When just one life is ignored, just one murder permitted, a dangerous precedent is set throwing into motion the making of many holocausts.

When that happens, we are all a part of that history and we all must accept our part for allowing history to be written that way.

Stephanie White Trivas

Stevenson

William Natcher

There is a statesman who has served in Congress for 40 years. He does not practice partisan politics and refuses to waste the taxpayers' money. Since elected in 1953, Rep. William Natcher, D-Ky., has never accepted a campaign contribution. He has spent less on office expenses than any of his colleagues. His campaign expenses amounted to $6,614 in 1992.

He is the new chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, which controls $500 billion in spending.

If the news media would give Rep. William Natcher more public exposure, it would persuade a greater number of honest citizens to enter the political arena.

Joseph Lerner

Baltimore

Freedom of and from Religion

I write this in response to Cal Thomas (Opinion * Commentary, Dec. 15). Principally, Mr. Thomas ignores the idea that freedom of religion also means freedom from religion.

Above all, however, freedom of religion means the right granted lTC by the Constitution to practice in this country a religion of choice.

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