Letters to the Editor

Readers write about Washington's role in regulating the financial sector, why cadets enlist in the military, anticipatory self-defense, and sexual harassment.

Congress must fulfill its regulatory responsibilities

In response to the Sept. 17 article, "Wall Street's turmoil tests McCain": Senator McCain seems to have missed something in his proposal to set up a commission to look into the failures of the financial systems in this nation.

Does he not recognize that we already have an organization whose responsibility it is to do so? It is the 100-member commission elected by the American people called the United States Senate, and the 435-member subcommission called the United States House of Representatives.

If congressional representatives cannot do what they were sent to Washington to do, then they should return their paychecks, return to their homes, and let someone who can, do it.

Gordy Hagen
Clearbrook, Minn.

Enlistment becoming a family matter

Regarding the Sept. 19 article, "Will Ivy League embrace R.O.T.C. again?": I taught JROTC for seven years after retirement. I think Frank Shaeffer has an interesting perspective, but I believe he is dead wrong regarding those who would sign up with a "popular" president.

My feeling is that Americans are a society of instant gratification. We had a surge in enlistments after 9/11 and now people have largely forgotten.

I have found that many of those taking ROTC come from military families. We are becoming a separate society. I just went to West Point to watch one of my sons graduate in May. The number of cadets coming from military families has markedly increased since I was there. This is not a good phenomenon.

Ed Kennedy
Leavenworth, Kan.

Self-defense or aggression?

In regard to the Sept. 15 editorial, "The Palin doctrine": Anticipatory self-defense is not "similar to the action of a homeowner who shoots a masked gunman standing outside a bedroom window." The masked gunman is on the homeowner's property. "Anticipatory self-defense" has been used to justify invading another country, Iraq, under the claim that it had weapons of mass destruction.

This is more similar to wandering around another community looking for someone who might be wearing a mask (that turns out to be a winter hat) and might be carrying a gun (that turns out to be a shopping bag). Oops! Made a mistake, but we sure deterred that dead shopper wearing a winter hat from ever going and buying a gun and showing up under your bedroom window.

Marga Lincoln
Helena, Mont.

Men and women should mix

Regarding the Sept. 23 article, "In Egypt, sexual harassment grows": Sex is an instinct that needs to be regulated by means of education and marriage at a proper age, and security by the government. Attitudes toward sex should adapt to global changes in culture and traditions without being dogmatic or impractical.

There should be coeducation in all schools and colleges. Restrictions on free mixing of men and women increase the chances of harassment.

Kunuthur Srinivasa Reddy
Tirupati, India

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, 210 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston, MA 02115. E-mail letters to Letters and Opinion pieces to OpEd.

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