Boorish GuestCito Gaston reminds me of the boorish guest...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

July 27, 1993

Boorish Guest

Cito Gaston reminds me of the boorish guest, who is invited to a lovely home, is wined and dined by a gracious host, and then leaves without so much as a token or thank you for the hospitality shown him.

Perhaps Toronto is not so gracious and they just don't know any better.

Velma S. Grant

Baltimore

Chelation

This letter is in response to Dr. Simeon Margolis' negative comments about chelation therapy as an alternative to bypass surgery (July 6).

I have seen one patient with a 30 percent blockage and another with a 75 percent blockage in a major coronary artery. A repeat angiogram after chelation therapy demonstrated complete disappearance of these lesions.

I have also seen chelation therapy save the gangrenous leg of TC man who had been strongly advised to have an amputation. Many other individuals have experienced improvements in angina, shortness of breath or walking a distance.

Contrary to Dr. Margolis' claim, there is good research supporting this treatment. A controlled, double-blind study published in the Journal of the National Medical Association in 1990 showed a clear improvement with chelation therapy in individuals with atherosclerosis in the legs.

Another study showed improved blood flow in the carotid arteries (in the neck) after chelation.

Dr. Margolis cites a negative report done by a group of vascular surgeons in Denmark. However, allegations of possible scientific misconduct have been made by Danish investigators familiar with this study.

Specifically, there is evidence that the treatments were inadvertently or purposely switched, so that some of the placebo patients actually received the active treatment and vise versa. If that is true, then the results of the study are meaningless.

Are vascular surgeons, who have a vested interest in the multi-billion dollar bypass industry, the appropriate people to study a therapy that is a direct threat to their business?

Furthermore, Dr. Margolis' remark that chelation is expensive is rather curious, considering that its main competition, coronary bypass surgery, costs more than 15 times as much.

Alan R. Gaby, M.D.

Pikesville

Against NAFTA

As the vote approaches on the North American Free Trade Agreement, only a handful of congressmen have read the text and even fewer understand its potential impact on jobs and work in the United States.

NAFTA allows dspute panels to be conducted in secret, with the identities of the panelists a state secret; prohibits the right of judicial review; protects investor rights in Mexico while ignoring worker rights and benefits; voids state laws that conflict with the less stringent regulations on food imports and environmental protection found in the treaty.

It also nullifies federal buy-local laws; allows U.S. factories to relocate to Mexico and to reap the benefits of cheaper Mexican wages; allows other foreign countries to flood our markets with imports channeled through Mexico.

These are just a few of its provisions.

We do not need this trad agreement, which subordinates American interests to those of other countries.

Charles E. Wilson Jr.

Elkridge

Necessary Evil

Your July 1 editorial, "The Lesson of the Bloodsworth Case," was a skillful attempt to sway people against the death penalty, but the emotional and factual reasons for capital punishment are much stronger.

For every person who is wrongly executed, there are many more people who are killed because murderers were not executed for previous crimes.

Many of Ted Bundy's victims would still be alive today if he had been swiftly killed the first time he was captured (a classic example of how the death penalty can be a deterrent if properly applied).

Where is the concern for all the innocent lives lost because capital punishment is not used as often as it should be?

The argument that the death penalty should be abolished because it is a barbaric act not worthy of a civilized, enlightened and humane society is based on wishful thinking. Life is not totally civilized and enlightened and never will be.

Just as it was necessary to kill many innocent Germans and Japanese in air raids during World War II in order to get rid of the fascist threat, so a determined fight against crime will also have its innocent victims.

But more people will live because of a thorough use of the death penalty than lose their lives by it.

Why is there more concern about an "unfortunate overreaction" to the fear of crime than the actions of criminals?

There have been many more innocent people killed by thugs than by the government or vigilantes. People who are more judgmental about society's "collective thirst for revenge" than they are about the ruthless activities of the criminal element ought to worry about which side of the river they are on when it comes to crime.

Charles E. Wilson Jr.

Elkridge

The Right to Bear Arms

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