Regardless of who had power, church was a toolYour Sept...

LETTERS

October 12, 1997

Regardless of who had power, church was a tool

Your Sept. 24 editorial, ''Politics of religion,'' is quite correct in saying that ''throughout much of its turbulent history, the Russian Orthodox Church has been part of the state machinery.'' Indeed, it always was an obedient tool of the Russian regime, regardless of whether it was czarist or communist.

The case of the Ukrainian Church is the best example. Both Ukrainian churches, Orthodox and Catholic, were too dangerous to Moscow. The Orthodox Church was destroyed in 1930 and the Catholic in 1946.

In both cases, the same pattern followed. First there were persecutions, then the church hierarchies were arrested and then the Russian Church, supported by police, would conduct its ''mission'' and try to ''unite'' the conquered peoples with Russian Orthodoxy.

The biggest irony in both cases was that such ''unifications'' invariably were subsequently recorded in Russian history as ''free'' and ''voluntary.`

Wolodymyr C. Sushko

Baltimore

Cancer discoveries deserved front page

Rarely are we given the opportunity to read exhilarating and positive news on the front page of The Sun. A unique opportunity was missed when the two lead articles published in the Oct. 2 New England Journal of Medicine were mentioned in a solitary inside paragraph of the paper.

The studies reported substantial and exciting findings -- adding post-operative radiation treatment to mastectomy and chemotherapy in the treatment of breast cancer resulted in a 25 percent reduction in mortality.

These clinical trials were conducted in Denmark and Canada. The two randomized and prospective studies, which represent more than 2,000 women being followed for up to 15 years, make important contributions to our fight against this common disease that will change our patterns of practice.

All patients with breast cancer involving lymph nodes, or other worrisome features, now have a greater chance for cure. And therefore a greater reason for hope. Shouldn't this have been front-page news?

Robert K. Brookland, M.D.

Baltimore

The writer is chairman of the Department of Radiation Oncology at Greater Baltimore Medical Center.

Hey, Fan, have you ever been to a game?

I have to ask if Jean Marbella (''The Fan'') has actually ever watched a baseball game. I'm still trying to figure out how she wrote an article about Seattle without ever going there. Are times that tough at The Sun?

She must be writing for readers like my wife and some of my friends, who don't have a clue what goes on inside Camden Yards. Don't get me wrong, I understand that many people have no interest in the ''game'' of baseball. There are usually several thousand at the ballpark; eat, drink, be seen and chit-chat until 10 p.m. and go home.

I guess that's why Ms. Marbella is always in the Today section of the paper. I start with Sports, my wife Today, kids the Business (stocks) section; Ms. Marbella's articles are for my wife to read about the ''events surrounding'' baseball, correct?

Tell her I would love to take her to a game (with my wife) to watch the game and the other chit-chat nonsense as well. We would all probably have a great time.

Alex P. Gross

Owings Mills

Zurawik is wrong: Truman was no crook

The Oct. 5 review of the PBS show ''Truman'' by David Zurawik was pure hogwash. He states that Harry S Truman was a crook. He could not be further from the truth.

Truman was one of the most decent, moral men to ever hold the office of the presidency. Yes, he did come to power in a corrupt political machine. But he personally refused to be bought or bribed.

During the military build-up of World War II he personally saved the country millions of dollars by uncovering corrupt contractors. When he left office, he refused to accept exorbitant speaking fees or sit on the boards of large corporations for a fee. Instead, he went home to his mother-in-law's home. He never owned one himself. Some crook.

The Sun should assign Mr. Zurawik to less brain-taxing television reviews. Such as ''Baywatch.''

Joseph E. Michalski

Pasadena

First King George, now the IRS

On Sept. 25, a bunch of taxpayers complained about the IRS treatment of them, asking that it be stopped. They said that the IRS is lazy, incompetent and hostile when it came to collecting taxes. The taxpayers also stated that the IRS has destroyed their lives. Now the Senate Finance Committee, looking at the cases, has turned its harsh red spotlight on the cases of the confused Americans looking for answers as to why the IRS has abused them and why they should take it any more.

Go taxpayers! I say that because the colonies went through this 200 years ago with the fat king of England. Why should we have to go through this again with the IRS? I don't think we should have this. People might think that the IRS is just like the king.

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