A Fan's HeroesI have been a sports fan my entire life and...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

June 28, 1994

A Fan's Heroes

I have been a sports fan my entire life and there are few things I find more entertaining than a last-minute touchdown drive or a late-inning home run to win a game.

I do not however, consider those who perform these deeds to be heroes.

Educators who have tried their best to give me the tools I will need for life, emergency medical technicians who have attended to me with great care and capability, my relatives who have served their country, and my parents, who have always done their best to do what is best for me -- these are my heros.

To all of you who have run, thrown or hit one long, thanks for the entertainment.

L To those I have mentioned above, thanks for being my heroes.

Richard J. Pardoe

Columbia

Missing Nothing

In his June 22 response to my June 14 letter, Kevin Naff says that I am "missing the point" when I protest the criticism of President Clinton.

I am missing nothing. The reason I wrote that letter was not just to protest the criticism, but to emphasize the unfairness of it. We are holding the president to a standard that we have not held previous presidents to.

Previous presidents, if they handled the domestic agenda well and generally performed satisfactorily, were forgiven for broken campaign promises on peripheral (and sometimes major) issues.

For example, Ronald Reagan said that he would cut the size of government and deal harshly with foreign terrorists. While Mr. Reagan made cuts in student loans and other social services, the enormous defense expansion of the 1980s and the "War on Drugs" turned the first promise into a joke. In the Iran-contra affair (and possibly in the release of the

Iranian hostages in 1981), Mr. Reagan made deals with terrorists, instead of treating them harshly.

During the 1992 campaign, I knew that Mr. Clinton was full of baloney when he started talking about a middle class tax cut, aid to Bosnia and amnesty for Haitians. Any reasonable person knew that these things would be difficult or impossible to achieve for either then-President Bush (who promised some of the same things) or for Mr. Clinton. And although I was and still am concerned with the human and civil rights of the Haitians and Bosnians as well as the homosexuals, I supported Mr. Clinton and continue to because I felt he would deal competently (as he clearly has) with the major problems that faced the well-being of Americans -- the economy, the deficit, health care.

The anti-Clinton and anti-Democrat PR machine bases itself omisinformation and peripheral issues that have little meaning for the welfare of Americans.

Raymond P. Frankewich

Columbia

Kim Il Sung and Hitler

Not long after military defeat at the hands of the Allies, the dictator took power promising to raise the country to new glories.

He developed arms contrary to international agreements. He threatened his immediate neighbor.

To defuse the situation, a leading Western Allied statesman journeyed to the country to negotiate with the dictator. The world held its breath. Photos of the meeting appeared hopeful. The Allied statesman returned home, announcing success.

Thus, in 1938, after visiting Adolf Hitler in Germany, Neville Chamberlain announced that he had achieved "peace in our time."

Similarly, in 1994, after visiting Kim II Sung in North Korea, Jimmy Carter concluded: "I personally believe the crisis is over."

Leon Reinstein

Baltimore

North Korea's recent threat of war in case the United Stategetssanctions imposed on it is reminiscent of Hitler's bluster at the time Germany marched into the Rhineland in 1936.

France and Britain, had they acted and not been deterred by Hitler's bluster, could have prevented World War II and the ensuing Holocaust by eliminating Hitler's threat when Germany was relatively weak.

Similarly, for the U.S. to hesitate to move against North Korea's nuclear installations now would mean that the U.S. in the future not only would be faced with a North Korea with nuclear weapons, but also, given North Korea's track record of selling arms to American enemies in the Middle East, might well be confronted with nuclear arms in the hands of Iran, Iraq and Libya.

If the case of the Rhineland teaches us anything, it is to move when the time is ripe to prevent a greater catastrophe in the future.

The time is now for the U.S. to act against North Korea.

Robert O. Freedman

Baltimore

Adolescent Needs Met by Middle School Plan

As a Baltimore County middle school teacher and a parent of a child only one year away from middle school, I feel compelled to respond to Susan Costello's letter of June 18 about middle school philosophy and practices in Baltimore County ("Watering Down Academics in Baltimore County").

Ms. Costello's cynical description of periods which include advisory and exploratory activities reflects a lack of understanding of adolescent needs and developmentally appropriate instructional practices.

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