Letters To The Editor

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

October 11, 2005

Congress, courts must rein in Bush

Michael O'Hanlon's suggestion that Congress enact into law President Bush's desire that federal troops be made legally available to keep order in a national disaster couldn't be more wrong ("Let military keep order in disasters," Opinion * Commentary, Oct. 6).

This is a president who needs to be severely reined in, not given even more power.

After Congress rubber-stamped his desire to invade Iraq, he claimed he had the right to invade any country he perceives as a threat.

After Congress passed the USA Patriot Act, he claimed he had the right to detain people whom he accuses of being terrorists indefinitely and solely on his say-so.

The very last thing Congress should even consider is allowing this president to use federal troops anywhere in this country, under any circumstances.

If history is any indication, he would use that power unlawfully and on a much broader scale than any of us would imagine.

If Congress perceives that we don't have enough men and women in uniform to address a national catastrophe, it should pass a law ordering our National Guard troops home.

Dealing with domestic national disasters is the appropriate role for the National Guard - not an open-ended deployment that uses them like regular Army troops and leaves our nation unsafe at home.

Robert T. Wilke

Monkton

Using Army at home imperils democracy

I totally disagree with the idea of any president, no matter from which party, having the authority to commit the Army in this country in times of disasters ("Let military keep order in disaster," Opinion * Commentary, Oct. 6). This could only too easily lead to dictatorship.

Local government officials need to request help if it is needed, not have it thrust upon them.

Anne Lee

Timonium

Miers won't defend the public interest

Newt Gingrich's column "Conservatives can trust in Miers" (Opinion * Commentary, Oct. 7) has made the perfect argument for why Harriet Miers should not be confirmed to the Supreme Court, although he intended to do the opposite.

He has documented well that she is a reliable, predictable, known quantity who will vote in favor of corporate interests, which has been her record over an entire career.

The Senate just confirmed a chief justice who will be a reliable corporate ally. Who will be for the people on this remade court?

Employers are well-heeled and well-represented at all levels of government. And partisan ideology at this level is unacceptable.

The Constitution might have to be amended to take this appointment privilege away from a presidency that the Congress and the courts have allowed to become too powerful.

J. Russell Tyldesley

Catonsville

High court merits more than a crony

Given her lack of judicial experience or public record of interpretation of major issues that will face any Supreme Court justice, what makes Harriet Miers a candidate of choice for the court ("Specter rebukes conservatives," Oct. 10)?

There are many qualified, sound judges in federal and state courts - yes, women and minorities included - who would be reasonable to examine for this post.

Isn't this a position where we should have the best rather than a personal crony?

Rosemary D. Clanton

Arnold

GOP presidents betray core values

Since President Ronald Reagan, the Republicans have been trotting out "conservative in name only" presidential candidates and have tried to convince disenchanted, true conservatives that it was important to vote Republican if for no other reason than Supreme Court appointments - and they have garnered success by so doing.

The nomination of Harriet Miers might be the undoing of that support ("Specter rebukes conservatives," Oct. 10).

If she is seated on the court and does not turn out to be as conservative as President Bush has advertised, I would hope true conservatives will start voting for conservative third party candidates until the Republicans get the message.

Dave Reich

Perry Hall

Judicial experience not key qualification

If one reads the papers or watches TV commentaries about the Supreme Court nomination, one has to conclude that the following are requirements for the job: You must leave a big paper trail; if you are a Christian, you must be a lukewarm one; and you must have judicial experience.

What's wrong with us?

On Oct. 4 The Sun published a chart noting 10 appointments - dating back to President Woodrow Wilson - of justices who had no previous judicial experience ("Bush returns to past in Miers nomination," Oct. 4). All gained a substantial reputation serving on the high court.

The only requirements for serving on the court should be total respect for the Constitution, knowing the law and being of sound moral character.

Richard L. Lelonek

Baltimore

Moshe Khaver case was badly handled

Something just doesn't smell right in the way the incarceration of Moshe Khaver was handled ("Jailed teenager moved to the state prison system," Oct. 6).

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