Dole a hypocriteIn his recent diatribe directed toward...

the Forum

July 06, 1995

Dole a hypocrite

In his recent diatribe directed toward Hollywood's leaders of the entertainment industry, Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole lashed out at their promotion of "violence, rape and casual sex in movies and music.`

"Must we debase our nation and threaten our children for the sake of corporate profits?" he asked.

This writer agrees that Hollywood must confront its responsibilities by substantially reducing the violence in the films it produces.

But Mr. Dole must be challenged and condemned for his unconscionable opposition to our environmental laws primarily designed not only to protect our precious children, but, indeed, all citizens of our nation.

Our environmental laws assured us of safe drinking water and unpolluted air. Toxic waste dumping and industrial pollution were substantially reduced.

Our wetlands played a key role in flood control and served as nature's kidneys to purify our lakes and rivers and the waters in which we fished and swam. Yet an estimated half of the nation's wetlands have disappeared since colonial days. Today 290,000 additional acres are still being lost annually.

In industrial factories across the nation, men of greed and power who initially cooperated in assisting to cleanse our environment have found it more profitable to return to their former dirty and dangerous methods, resulting in an increase of emphysema, lung, heart and other debilitating diseases.

If the opponents of our environmental laws have their way, the air we breathe, the water we drink and the land on which we live will become as destructive as a nuclear weapon unleashed on our nation by a foreign enemy.

Mr. Dole, who is determined to gut our environmental laws, must be charged with hypocrisy and utter insensitivity to the future of our children, as he bows to the malevolent demands of his big business buddies who "threaten our children for the sake of corporate profits.`

Leon Peace Ried

Baltimore

No need to divide

For 50 years, the Baltimore chapter of the American Jewish Committee has been building coalitions and working to increase mutual respect and understanding between Jews and other religious, racial and ethnic groups within our region.

Through on-going dialogues and programs, we are committed to developing positive intergroup relations and healing past hurts.

Recent news stories and a Sun editorial (June 25, "Lessons Still to be Learned") clearly remind us that this vital work is not yet completed. However, we feel the editorial unfairly equated a local incident with a flagrant example of anti-Semitism in Poland.

The chapter's response to a concerned member was to assure her that we were aware of the occasional insensitivity to Jews and Judaism that unfortunately still exists among some members of the Christian clergy and laity.

And we informed her that the AJC is actively working with many Christian leaders in our community on a series of interreligious programs and activities designed to improve interreligious relations.

Because Scripture cannot be re-written, it especially needs to be taught and interpreted with great care and sensitivity. Indeed, this has been a primary concern of the AJC since its founding in 1906.

And the Baltimore AJC chapter will continue to do what it has been doing for a half century: work with our colleagues in the Christian community to build a better America.

We strongly believe that religious differences need not divide us as a nation. Rather they can contribute to the cohesive beauty of America.

It is that kind of religious pluralism that has been a hallmark of our nation. It is good to know that the AJC in Baltimore can count upon so many allies and friends in this important undertaking.

Lois Rosenfield

Baltimore

The writer is executive director of the Baltimore chapter of the American Jewish Committee.

Book therapy

As a taxpayer, I am distressed by the decision to fund something like the Walter G. Amprey Employee Lending Library ("Library offers help for troubled school employees," June 29).

I find it incredibly naive to think that teachers and administrators would flock to a "self-help" library specializing in titles like "I'll Quit Tomorrow" and "The Courage To Heal."

Why don't teachers just come in wearing a sign reading "I'm an addict"?

The library's director is Mr. Amprey's wife, Freda. One can imagine their conversations: "Honey, did you know Mr. [Smith] had a heroin problem?"

Mr. Amprey doesn't see a conflict of interest in hiring his wife, who earns $65,000 a year as director of the schools' employee assistance and wellness program: "The library is an honor," he claims.

An honor to what? Naivete?

Chris Mannix

Chester

Reports back Balto. county teachers

Sometimes, if one hangs on long enough and digs in deep enough, a shining light brings illumination and restores the occluded vision of others.

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