Israel vs. HaitiHaiti is described in The Sun as "a...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

February 09, 1993

Israel vs. Haiti

Haiti is described in The Sun as "a desperately poor nation." My sources confirm this: A 1991 per-capita gross national product of $360, among the lowest such figures on Earth. American aid to Haiti in that same year: $65 million, or about $11 per person.

Also in 1991, the people of Israel, with a per-capita GNP of $6,700 (about 20 times the Haitian figure), received from the ever-generous American taxpayers about $1,250 each, or a $5,000 subsidy for each family of four (100 times the help given to the starving Haitians).

Am I missing something?

Kirk Nevin

White Hall

Potshots at NRA

The liberal mind-set -- rooted in the notion that if they can dream it, think it, say it, write it, and, above all, legislate it, then, by God, it must be -- believes that applying that nostrum in the form of gun control is the answer to our horrendous murder rate, for which, of course, the National Rifle Association is totally to blame.

If there was a way to instantly remove every gun from the face of the Earth, I would support it, but the reality of that is nonsense, and anything short of it is a waste of time given the number of firearms in existence, and those who already own many of them.

I am not a member of the NRA, nor a gun owner yet, but removing guns from responsible, honest citizens, in spite of the inevitable tragic accidents that accompany their ownership, would only make living in our society even more dangerous.

The media take great delight in lampooning the NRA and portraying its members as redneck, low-brow buffoons, but in all fairness, please publish a list of its members who pulled the triggers in our record-breaking year of murders and violent crime so that we can identify these evil and dangerous individuals.

Dave Reich

Fallston

Leaky Reasoning

As a taxpayer, I found your Jan. 25 article concerning Mary Pat Clarke's overnight stay at Lexington Terrace very disturbing.

It seems one of the major problems the residents face is leaky faucets, with one faucet spewing out "over 60 gallons an hour." Ms. Clarke is quoted as saying, "If we had a pocketful of washers tonight and a wrench, we could solve half of the problems we've seen."

I find this situation disgusting. How can anyone, unless they're over 95 or bedridden, watch their faucet going full-force, 24 hours a day without doing anything about it? Some of these people are renting for $56 a month and they can't get a friend or family member to install a lousy 10-cent washer?

Instead of locating the "residents" to safer, low-rise apartments, the mayor should first teach them to take care of what they have.

Virginia Sinsz

Hamilton

No Mandate

Ellen Goodman's Jan. 19 column indicated that we are at a turning point such that President Clinton has within his powers the ability to virtually settle the abortion debate in our country. Nothing could be further from the truth.

If "by the stroke of a pen" (as Ms. Goodman hopes) the president further promotes the killing of the unborn under the guise of expanding the rights of women, he will only again inflame the zeal of the majority of Americans who reject abortion as a means of birth control.

Ms. Goodman's musing sounds rather like the victory shouts of the pro-slavery Democrats back in the 1850's.

She implies that his election signals that America has decided and . . . is pro-choice. In fact, exit polls of those who listed abortion as a top issue showed that those voters voted overwhelmingly for President Bush.

Mr. Clinton, without a majority of the popular vote, has a very limited mandate. By his own words, we know he has been called to "fix the economy."

To imply that his election signals that the issue has been decided by a pro-choice majority flies in the face of the obvious.

The prior three presidential elections, including two overwhelming landslides, were won by strongly pro-life candidates. Ms. Goodman makes the mistake of reading far too much on this single issue from the election of our new President . . .

Kevin McGhee

Laurel

Israel and Palestinians

Jack Levin's defense of Israel's ill-advised expulsion of 415 alleged members of Hamas and Islamic Jihad without trial (letter, Jan. 31) is too much to swallow.

One can understand why Israelis cannot forget their own painful story: the Holocaust, wars with Arab states, Iraq's scud missiles, Syria at the Golan Heights, Iran-backed politicization of militant Islam in Israel and occupied territories, Palestinian violence (19 Israeli civilians killed in 1992), the boycott and the influx of immigrants.

But to describe Israel as the "most civilized and the only democratic nation in the Middle East" is incongruous. To speak of Israel as a nation that "venerates life, human rights and peace" is bizarre after 25 years of violations of Palestinian human rights.

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