Printed letters, August 29, 2013
Without solid evidence, one can have reasonable doubts that President Bashar al-Assad initiated the nerve gas attacks reported in Syria. An Alawite Muslim and despot, he is less oppressive than his father, Hafez al- Assad. He has maintained peace in Syria, as did his father, protecting all minority religions, importantly including native Christians.
The inflamed rebels in Syria fighting against him are radical Muslim groups of vague number and origin that cannot even agree among themselves. If Assad is overthrown, we can anticipate a deadly display of these groups fighting each other for control of Syria.
Their only apparent common goal is to expel or murder all Christians while imposing Sharia law. In Egypt, the Coptic Christians are being harassed and murdered and dozens of their churches destroyed. It’s safe to assume the same will happen in Syria.
Putin and his Russia are allies of Syria. Along with the Obama administration, they are encouraging United Nations review of the suspected nerve gas attacks in an attempt to determine their origin.
It’s quite possible that Putin pursues the investigation, believing it will exonerate Assad. President Obama seems adrift without a coherent plan and is simply buying time.
American progressives have become insistent upon military aggression to install their form of democracy, even where it is likely unworkable. Where is the anti-war left of the Democrat Party?
Perhaps it expired in the 1990s with President Clinton. Recall his Secretary of State, Madeline Albright, whose fatuous line was: “What’s the point of having this superb military that you’re always talking about if we can’t use it?” Nothing changed during the administrations of Bush II or Obama.
We’ve squandered too many precious lives and too much unaffordable treasure in the Middle East.
It’s time to come home. With our covert assistance, Israel can take care of itself.
Former coaches stressed moral values over winning
All the professional athletes violating the law are indications that there is something critical missing in their early development. Back in the ‘50s and ‘60s we had some outstanding coaches who had the right focus. They did like to win, but what was most important was character development through sport.
In fact, they sacrificed a sure state championship by kicking off five members of the starting lineup of one local high school just before the playoffs for violating one of the rules regarding personal conduct within the community.
The lessons these five learned were of much greater value than winning state and getting away with it.
School success depends on parents’ involvement
Now Attorney General Eric Holder is pushing to block Louisiana’s school voucher program. The complaint is that allowing vouchers violates desegregation laws. Nothing different will be taught in the classrooms. What they are really saying is that, while the program is available for all races, more white families are utilizing it, leaving a denser black population in the public schools.
But the desegregation argument only holds water if the program only allows one group while denying another. So, what are they really worrying about? I can think of a couple of things:
✓ A concern that the public schools will decline in performance. This is not a racist statement and it has nothing to do with the ability of the students. It has everything to do with the parents.
✓ Most public schools and colleges have a liberal philosophy. Children need to go to public schools so they can learn the “right” way to think. (Ten years ago I would have laughed this off as conspiracy theory; today, I’m not so sure.)
In my opinion, the responsibility for a school’s success rests entirely on the shoulders of the parents. Instead of “Did you do your homework,” it should be “Let’s check your homework.” Parents need to be involved in every aspect of their child’s education, including the learning process, discipline in the classroom, teacher performance, etc. The government is not responsible for your child’s education. You are. This brings us back to the Justice Department action. Will the government really take action, in the name of “equal education,” to prevent a family from trying to provide its children with the best available education opportunity?
Every day I look at the news and wonder, “What the hell are we doing?”
Comic strip showing children playing soldiers was not funny
It isn’t funny when Lynn Johnston has children in her “comic strip” Aug. 25 saying, “Boy, grown-up soldiers sure are lucky. They get to play this for real.”
This after showing children pretending to have flamethrowers, grenades, machine guns and killing each other. Where is the humor in that?
Although she titles it “For Better or for Worse,” it still doesn’t belong in the comic section. Does it belong anywhere?
LOIS (JOHNSTON) LAMPERT