Letters

Let duped dads give child-support loans

In response to the Feb. 9 article, "Dad wasn't dad after all, but still owes child support": The Florida Supreme Court has come down on the side of the child – in my mind, rightfully so. But there is an easy solution. Once it is established that a man is not a child's biological father, child-support payments should continue as before – but as a loan to the child's mother.

Once the child reaches age 18, the mother must pay the loan back to the ex-husband. Whether interest must be paid or not, and the time frame for repayment must be established, but this method protects both the child and the duped father.
Michael Shepard
Bloomsburg, Pa.

The US shouldn't mediate in Mideast

In reference to the Feb. 7 article, "A war's perilous aftermath," about the cluster bombs dropped by Israel on Lebanon: The failure of the United States to condemn Israel's use of cluster bombs confirms the general belief that the US has an extreme pro-Israel bias. It is this bias that renders the US unable to mediate the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, and is the reason the US is distrusted to mediate other conflicts in the Middle East.

The use of cluster bombs has been condemned by the Red Cross, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and other humanitarian organizations. And the United Nations condemned Israel's use of cluster bombs in Lebanon. But the US military has used cluster bombs in Iraq.
R.E. Reinert
Northport, Mich.

Turn to the Web for international news

Regarding John Hughes's Feb. 7 Opinion column, "US media can't cover the news if they don't cover the world": As Mr. Hughes pointed out, newspapers are publishing less and less foreign reporting. But we find that the foreign correspondents are still out there, looking for places to publish their work, and many of them are veterans of top-notch publications.

That's where World Politics Watch (www.WorldPoliticsWatch.com) comes in. We have published articles datelined from almost 40 countries in the few months we've been in existence. We also publish a "Media Roundup," which links to news and commentary about international affairs from the world's English-language newspapers.

Unlike many Web-based organizations that publish foreign reporting, we're an independent, for-profit entrepreneurial venture that's trying to create a viable, Web-based business model publishing international affairs news and commentary.

We hope World Politics Watch will add needed diversity to the foreign reporting being provided by large wire services.
Hampton Stephens
Editor and publisher, World Politics Watch
Washington

Libraries offer more than books

Regarding the Feb. 6 article, "A budget ax over 'Harry Potter crowd' ": It's always interesting to me to hear the argument about closing public libraries because the Internet provides most of the information people need.

What about the mere fact that public libraries have become multimedia centers, providing those very computers that help individuals obtain information from the Internet?

I have yet to visit our local branch library without seeing every computer station fully occupied. We must remember that not everyone owns a computer, no matter how fortunate many of us are to have one.
Lorna E. Scherff
North Tustin, Calif.

The Monitor welcomes your letters and opinion articles. Because of the volume of mail we receive, we can neither acknowledge nor return unpublished submissions. All submissions are subject to editing. Letters must be signed and include your mailing address and telephone number. Any letter accepted will appear in print and on our website, www.csmonitor.com.

Mail letters to 'Readers Write,' and opinion articles to Opinion Page, One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115, or fax to (617) 450-2317, or e-mail to Letters.

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