Letters To The Editor

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

July 19, 2006

Fund public transit instead of the ICC

In his column "Don't squander billions on the ICC" (Opinion * Commentary, July 13), Stewart Schwartz made a convincing case that the Intercounty Connector would divert funds from more important projects and do next to nothing to improve traffic.

But the stakes are actually far higher than that.

Al Gore's film An Inconvenient Truth notes that 10 of the hottest years in human history have occurred in the last 15 years.

Global warming is real and challenges our economy and society to the core.

At the same time oil, experts have reached agreement that global oil production will soon peak. Indeed, several prominent experts believe global production has already peaked and that we will now face declining oil production.

But if oil production is entering decline, doesn't that mean we don't need to worry about global warming?

The answer depends on how we respond to diminishing supplies of oil.

If we respond to declining oil supplies by making better use of public transit, bicycling, telecommuting and building walkable communities, the decline of oil will help bring about a more stable climate.

If we respond by using oil shale, tar sands and coal liquefaction to produce more oil, we will pump out more carbon dioxide even as oil supplies decline.

But our atmosphere can't take the carbon we have already given it, so this path would lead to disaster.

We are making our decision about which path to take when we decide to spend our money on the ICC or on transit.

The ICC would lead to more sprawl and long-distance commutes. It would divert money we need for transit improvements.

The answer is clear: Dump the ICC.

Carl Henn

Rockville

Attacks by Israel terrorize civilians

Israel's targeting of civilians and civilian infrastructure in the Gaza Strip and Lebanon is a violation of the Geneva Conventions and constitutes a war crime ("Latest conflict splits Arab world," July 17).

We need to stop this war at its beginning, before it escalates into Armageddon.

So many innocent civilians have been killed, injured or left homeless. The Beirut airport has been bombed, bridges are down, southern Lebanese villages have been bombed and the country is besieged.

France and Norway have condemned Israel and said that these attacks are an act of war.

But our president has mostly stayed quiet and defended Israel's right to defend itself.

I understand that Israel wants to get its soldiers back. But is this a logical and rational way to proceed?

Israel has unleashed its fury on innocent civilians to satisfy its thirst for revenge. So who is behaving as a terrorist regime now?

If the United States does not intervene to stop Israel's offensive, this will turn into a full-scale war.

Sehmina Chopra

Salisbury

The writer is an Islamic counselor at Salisbury University.

North Korea thumbs its nose at weak U.S.

Is there any doubt why North Korea is thumbing its nose at U.N. sanctions and at the United States ("North Korea rejects U.N. sanctions," July 16)?

Because of the Bush-bashers, the anti-war activists and the divisive liberal Democrats (who seem to care more about our enemies than our country), North Korea is essentially assured that it can go merrily about its nuclear business without fear of reprisal.

Our country is now ripe for additional attacks like those of Sept. 11, 2001, because once again (as was the case under the Clinton administration), we are being perceived as weak, vulnerable and gutless.

Gail Householder

Marriottsville

Real democracies respect rule of law

A real democracy does not lock up people based on suspicion and then throw away the key ("Detainee issue splits Congress," July 15).

A real democracy does not use torture. A real democracy does not illegally wiretap and spy on its citizens.

A real democracy does not force its ideas on other countries.

A real democracy does not start pre-emptive wars based on misinformation.

Let's close the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and other military prisons immediately, and start fighting for this country's democracy.

Kitty de Melker

Bel Air

Critics of Lieberman express public's will

The Sun's article "Attacks stun Lieberman" (July 16) focuses on consternation from Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman and others that he is being attacked for his positions, including his support for the war in Iraq.

What appears to have really astonished the reporter is that a well-entrenched incumbent could actually have a bona fide opponent in the primary. And that the opponent and his supporters are criticizing the incumbent. How dare they?

The bias in the article is clear, with its references to the "bloody-knuckle approach" of Mr. Lieberman's opponents.

But why should we be concerned when a politician has to actually run against an opponent in a primary?

Isn't that how our democratic process is supposed to work?

Mr. Lieberman has chosen to side with the neoconservatives in support of an authoritarian president.

If a majority of Democrats in his state want to be represented by someone else, why is that so astonishing?

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