Letters to the Editor

Readers write about Arizona's new law, the widening class gap, degradable plastics, and the value of video games.

Injustice in Arizona's new law on undocumented workers

Regarding your Dec. 31 editorial, "Arizona goes after illegal hires": I found no concern for the interests of the humble workers who have benefited us all so much. The silence concerning the real human suffering was shocking.

Government, businesses, and people haveinvited undocumented workers (and their families and children) into this country. We have done so by our actions, inactions, and omissions. This country has always been a great magnet for peoples of the world. It should not be a surprise that people struggle and sacrifice to come and stay here. Perhaps we can all agree that some of our laws are broken. Borders have long been insecure. People cross without permission. Workers are hired, profits are made, and personal savings are gained. Taxes are not collected (or, as often, collected and not refunded). Friends and neighbors are made. Communities are built.

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Broken laws must be fixed. However, the intent of the Arizona law is to force undocumented workers to be fired and go away. Passing this harsh, narrow law, without addressing the other broken pieces of broken laws, is no movement toward justice.

Mark Schulte
St. Louis

America's class gap is widening

Regarding the Jan. 7 article, "Class divide hardens for Argentina's growing poor": In the US we also have assumed that anyone can upgrade one's station and situation through education, hard work, and a little luck. However, I see evidence that this assumption is waning.

The widening gap between the rich and poor in America is a disturbing trend. We are burdened with an ill-conceived war, untenable debt, a diminished dollar, reckless fiscal policies, and fewer job opportunities that provide a living wage and benefits.

The list goes on.

I fear that there are more similarities between the US and Argentina than we want to admit.

Or, more important, there are more similarities than we care to address in a prudent and timely manner.

Barbara Hood
Louisville, Ky.

Degradable plastics: Ask questions

Regarding the Dec. 19 article, "A primer on biodegradable plastics": This article highlights a very important dark side that the manufacturers of degradable plastics aren't telling us – they don't degrade as fast or as thoroughly as they are said to, unless they are in an industrial compost facility. It is important to consider the life cycle assessment of each material: Where did it come from? How much energy and CO2 went in to create it? How will it be disposed of? What is the impact? Otherwise, we cannot guarantee that the green is indeed good for the environment.

Yori Costa
Mishmar HaEmek, Israel

Video games have value

Regarding Matthew Devereux's Jan. 7 Opinion piece, "The moral cost of video games": Rarely do people speak about them with a level head. I think what Mr. Devereux really wants is more art in games and I fully agree. However, he gives an impression that all current video games are morally vacant. It depends on the game in question. Many games present moral/ethical themes.

I would also add that, like sitting down to watch a film, there is a real suspension of disbelief while one plays a video game; players are aware of their immersion into the fantasy realm. Sure, we demand realistic graphics, but also a setting that lifts us out of our everyday environment.

Daniel Daugherty
Denton, Texas

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 may appear in print or on our website, www.csmonitor.com. Mail letters to Readers Write and Opinion pieces to Opinion Page, One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115. E-mail letters to Letters and Opinion pieces to OpEd.

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