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Rhetoric of war alarming to readers

Some of the rhetoric coming out of Washington in regard to Operation Desert Shield is very disturbing to me, i.e.: 1. If we attack now it will be an easy win. We heard that when we went to Vietnam, a bloody and disastrous war.

2. We should attack now, because the American people are getting restless and opposing the effort. I'm sure the American people would be even more unhappy to see 50,000 young Americans slain. I'm not sure I understand logic of this kind.

3. The president's prestige needs to be maintained. Neither the president's prestige nor Saddam Hussein's honor are worth one drop of blood. One can recover from loss of prestige and honor, but death is final.

4. If this is a U.N. effort, why are we discussing sending 100,000 more troops? Why not let the other nations who have minuscule symbolic offerings send the 100,000 troops?

5. If Congress declares war the American people will be behind it. We don't want war, no matter who declares it. Since when has the Congress rejected going to war? They always approve it. It is just a formality.

6. Why are we speaking for Kuwait when we say there will be no compromise? It should be Kuwait's decision, not ours. Maybe it would be worth it to them to have their country back. It is a decision for them to make.

I cannot speak for everyone, but I believe that the majority of Americans oppose war. We have reaped the benefits of poor judgment on our part in the past. War is destructive and pointless.

Mrs. R. L. Vincent, Oldsmar

Attention, fellow Americans!

Do you want war?

Let's flood the White House with letters and cards telling President Bush our feelings.

It only takes a card or a letter to President Bush, the White House, Washington, D.C.

Ask him if he wants to go down in history as the president who got us into war or one that kept us out!

Tell him he will never be elected again if the boys in the desert of Saudi Arabia are sacrificed for such an unimportant reason.

Tell him!

Mr. and Mrs. Robert Davis, Spring Hill

"Religion' in school

Why are our children practicing Halloween in the schools with stories, songs, pictures, etc., when the schools don't allow students to practice religion? Witchcraft is a widely practiced "religion" today as attested to by self-proclaimed witches, and Halloween is their biggest holiday of the year.

In the schools, the kids are indoctrinated with stories about witches, ghosts and dead people, but when Christmas arrives, the schools rename it "Winter Holidays" and ban any expression relating to the true meaning of Christmas: the birth of Christ. It's hypocritical of our schools to deny kids observing Christmas as a religious holiday when they are encouraged to participate in Halloween, which is a holiday observed by practicing witches and occultists.

We allow our children to learn of the occult but not of God.

Betty Holden, St. Petersburg

Why criticize Earth First?

Re: Don Addis' brainless joke about Earth First.

I am really disappointed with Don Addis this time! This is especially sad as he usually is my hero and one of the reasons (together with Clay Bennett, Don Wright and Herblock _ not to mention some comic strips Like "For Better or For Worse" and "Herman"), I am a subscriber to the St. Petersburg Times. Well _ there are other reasons of course, but I am referring here to the "comic" reasons.

This time though, by seemingly attacking a group of people (no, I don't belong to them, I'm too old for that kind of thing!) who desperately are trying to save the last few old trees left in this formerly forest-covered region of the Northwest, he really blew it! What can possibly be brainless in the desire to preserve some, at least some, parts of the wilderness from the greed of the exploiters? As I read right in the Times, most of those trees aren't even processed in the United States, but shipped off to Japan, just so big business can make some more money, subsidized by taxpayers at that! The methods of people like Earth First? I feel that if you are small, underfunded and otherwise totally helpless, you have to use methods which at least get you into the press! If it takes tree-spiking (by the way I read that they promised not to do it anymore), so be it! If there hadn't been some _ in their time probably just as maligned farsighted people around, like for instance, John Muir _ there would hardly be any national parks around today! So let us preserve the last heartbreakingly few wilderness spots for our grandchildren to enjoy! Once the old trees are gone _ that's it, Don Addis! People like you should help to preserve, not make silly jokes about the ones who try. It's for your kids too, man, wake up!

Christel Escobar, Holiday

Integration, slowly

Re: Tampa's clubs integrate, slowly, Oct. 24.

Can you imagine? Blacks are being accepted to clubs. Reading that article made me feel like I was reading something occurring 20 years ago. I applaud the clubs doing this _ but I am just amazed it has taken this long. It's only now a black, for the first time, has been allowed to play golf at a particular club. And for the people who still want to reject them I can't believe they can be so narrow-minded. Remember, this is real life. We live on the same planet.

Carmen Bannon, St. Petersburg

Re: Tampa's clubs integrate, slowly, Oct. 24.

I certainly agree that this "integration" was on excellent step toward breaking the "color barrier." However, this is 1990. Steps like this should have been taken long ago. Next time your headline should read _ "Ignorant club members finally open door."

Michael Calta, New Port Richey

Come down and mingle

This is a response to the recent letter writers' remarks about the deadbeats who "buy crackers with food stamps then take the change to buy beer and cigarettes." The writers need to come down from their ivory tower and mingle among these welfare people. I do volunteer work with lower income families. I am very saddened every time I go into their homes. Many of them do not make above $6 an hour, if they make that much. Many do not have much education. When was the last time those like the above mentioned letter writers of this country had to live on $6 an hour before taxes? Florida is full of little companies that cannot afford to supply health insurance for their employees. Most of these people work for such companies. Most of these welfare people have little hope of making much more. The wealthy of this country get as much in freebies from the average taxpayers as do the welfare recipients. If you want to do away with the democratic entitlements, let's do away with the Republican entitlements to the wealthy. Fair is fair.

Janet M. Brown, Largo

Why penalize fishermen?

To everyone interested in justice: Let me tell you a story.

A man takes all the money he can raise (not a fortune) and invests it in a peach orchard. Now, the orchard is not big, but it is big enough to give him the year's money with which he can raise his family.

He has a fairly good crop. Just when he is going to start to pick the peaches, he hears the weather report, and a freeze is on its way. It will take him six days to get his crop in. He starts picking on Monday morning. Then his state passes a new law, saying peach orchard owners cannot pick peaches on Friday and Saturday.

He will automatically lose one-third of his crop and one-third of the money he counted on for his family, because the freeze is scheduled to hit on Sunday.

Isn't there a "right to work" law that will protect this man?

Well, it's the same as the new commercial fishing law. You cannot fish one-third of the time. Friday noon until Sunday at sundown. You are fishing for run mullet and, of course, the mullet know they are not supposed to run on the weekend.

Even though the fisherman has all his money invested in his equipment and his family is depending on the run season for most of the season and even summer's money.

If this law is not repealed, the state should kick in with a "subsidy" for the commercial fisherman of one-third of the money he would have made if he could have fished full time. After all _ they subsidize the farmers for not growing crops.

Is this law constitutional? Can they prohibit a man working whenever he has to, to feed his family?

If it is constitutional, then everyone should quit working.

We have so many bums now who don't want to work and won't work that the state should be proud of the ones who do want to work and not take handouts. They should not be penalized for working when they have to.

M.C. Wells, Crystal River

Busing to blame

I have had the opportunity to stay home and watch the "talk shows," read the newspaper (which there is no comparison to the St. Petersburg Times). I have been appalled at all our children are doing and I asked myself, "Where are the parents?" My next thought is, "it takes two parents, nowadays to support a family." I raised my children as a single parent. I worked at a job near my home, because I did not have a car. I lost control of my children when they were bused out of our neighborhood. I could not participate in the after hours school activities, neither could my children, because of our lack of transportation.

The parents are not to blame. The schools are not to blame. Busing is to blame! Until our government admits to this mistake, no one will have control over our children. Busing is the downfall of our neighborhoods, our families, and the United States of America! No mother, black or white, wants her child on a bus for half an hour or 45 minutes every day. I, as a grandmother, have had enough.

We've tried it. It doesn't work. Fix it.

Maryann Gould, St. Petersburg

Dangerous jobs

Re: A legal way to keep women in their place, letters to the editor, Oct. 24.

These women are nuts! Forget about the equal rights and fetal protection. What about their own bodies, being exposed to hazardous chemicals and radiation? As far as I'm concerned, they can have the jobs. I won't endanger my life just to have a decent paying male job, and I'm a guy!

Gene Snyder, Dunedin

Payment due

Mr. Herblock's cartoon of Oct. 22, depicting Uncle Sam paying off the surviving Japanese Americans who were so mistreated by us after the Pearl Harbor attack in World War II brought to mind that maybe _ someday as a "notch baby" born in 1917 _ if I live long enough, I might be handed a check for the Social Security monies members of Congress took out of my pocket and kept in theirs. But knowing the practices of our government toward its elderly, I don't think I had better hold my breath.

Robert Thoresen, Hudson

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