Somalis Should Determine Steps to Peace

I agree with the first sentence in the Opinion page article ``US Must Continue in Somalia Until Objectives Are Reached,'' Aug. 16, when the author writes, ``Enough.'' After that, we part company. The author claims we should double the number of American troops and confront, disarm, and capture Gen. Mohamed Farah Aideed. Such a ``Rambo'' style has never had a lasting effect except to embitter the nationals against the outside forces.

In the case of Somalia, a pause is necessary to reflect on the good that has been obtained thus far with relief efforts and the turn of events over the past two months, and to get a clear and updated picture on the best way to proceed.

This means calling on the Somali clan elders and getting a directive from the Somalis themselves rather than a United States view on the best way to proceed. Heidi Ernst-Luseno, Nairobi, Kenya Mob violence in South Africa

Recommended: Could you pass a US citizenship test?

The story of the death of the American student Amy Biehl in South Africa [Aug. 30, Pg. 3] presents a terrible image; it is even more terrible because it could have been avoided. She could have remained at home, but instead she chose to go to Africa to make a difference.

Ms. Biehl was killed by apartheid and not a mob; anger fueled by oppression took her life. If blacks were part of the government in South Africa, then they would be part of a stable society. The past can be forgiven, but the future must be more than a promise.

Nothing in the New Testament speaks of segregation and inequality. The Old Testament tells people to live in peace with their neighbors. For God's Word to have meaning, it must find a place in the heart. The death of this young woman could have meaning if it made that place. Richard T. Hamer, San Dimas, Calif. Gambling away education

My compliments to the author of the Cover Story ``Taking a Chance on Education,'' Aug. 16, for an excellent report on the pros and cons of gambling, specifically lottery gambling.

It is doubtful that any type of state lottery has a viable effect on negating the tremendous cost of educational programs, even though various state legislatures approve such a system to raise revenues.

What each state seems not to take into consideration when it promotes a lottery is the toll such a lottery extracts from a family income - already in financial jeopardy due to the country's economic conditions - not to mention the absolute negative impact that gambling has upon our society. Roy Burch, Glendale, Calif. Look and see more pollution in L.A.

Regarding the front-page article ``Hey! Hollywood Megahits Roll Down Streets of L.A. As 3-D Computer Graphics,'' Aug. 17: My city has recently gone through an exercise in trying to reduce visual pollution in the form of billboards and signs.

I was struck that the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) is going to paint buses to look like billboards. In other words, it is going to put billboards on wheels.

Since federal law prohibits billboards within 1,000 feet of each other along interstate highways, does this mean that Los Angeles's buses will not use interstate highways that already have ``regular'' billboards on them? Or, that the buses will not travel closer than 1,000 feet of each other?

These laws apply on many other highways and streets.

Seems to me the MTA is thumbing its nose at the letter and spirit of sign laws in order to pocket some money. Just because a billboard is mobile does not mean that it should be exempt from the law. C. Raymond Myers Jr., Brentwood, Tenn.

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