Stand up for victims, not criminals

I am very disappointed in your editorial ``Caning Americans,'' April 8. It expresses great concern about the potential harm to Michael Fay but none about the emotional and physical harm done to victims of crime and vandalism.

Also, the editorial says nothing about what would be truly effective in stopping crime. Your only concern is for the criminal! I believe that the rights and feelings of law-abiding citizens should take precedence over the rights and feelings of those who thoughtlessly inflict suffering on others.

It is unfortunate that the words ``no cruel or unusual punishment'' in our Constitution have effectively been interpreted to mean ``no severe punishment.'' William F. Marquardt, New York

Your letters are welcome. For publication they must be signed and include your address and telephone number. Only a selection can be published, and none acknowledged. Letters should be addressed to ``Readers Write,'' and can be sent by Internet E-mail (200 word maximum) to OPED@RACHEL.CSPS.COM, by fax to 617-450-2317, or by mail to One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115

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