- The Washington Times - Friday, April 26, 2002

Anti-Zionists, anti-Semites hard to tell the difference

It's not hard to be a "leader" when one has very few followers. In his April 22 letter to the editor, "Anti-Zionist demonstrators weren't anti-Semites," Mark Reedy relies entirely too much on a few kooky Hasidic rabbis to absolve that "hatefest on the Mall" of anti-Semitism.

Is it anti-Semitism or anti-Zionism to equate Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon with Adolf Hitler and Zionism with Nazism and to suggest parallels in their policies? Is it anti-Semitism or anti-Zionism to accuse Israel, without a shred of evidence, of horrendous crimes, to claim it does not believe in the equality of humanity, to shed copious tears because Israel supposedly is "undermining the cause of free Jews everywhere," thus justifying true anti-Semites' "acts of hate"?

Is it anti-Semitism or anti-Zionism to subject Israel to the most outrageous of double standards and to condemn it for not being willing to disappear into a "unified state"? Your editorial got it exactly right. If there is any distinction between these two noxious phenomena, it's surely in name only.


RICHARD D. WILKINS

Syracuse, N.Y.

Readers, columnist mistreat Dutch euthanasia law

I am disappointed by the one-sided attacks in your newspaper last week concerning the euthanasia policy of my country, and I feel compelled to respond ("The dying Dutchmen," Letters, April 17; "Want to go Dutch?" Op-Ed, April 19).

The issue of euthanasia is a very delicate one. Because the Netherlands has historically been willing to take on difficult issues and not shy away from them, I respect my country and the true democracy and open society that it is.

For many years, the Dutch have been discussing and trying to resolve the thorny issue of how to respond to terminally ill patients who cannot endure any more suffering. After 30 years, the debate in the Netherlands reached the point where the vast majority of its population accepts and supports the euthanasia legislation, which is embedded in a solid legal framework and which responds to the need of those patients.

Therefore, when the Netherlands is presented as a country in which doctors are killing their patients to clear out beds, I simply must protest. If individual mistakes have been made in the past or will be made in the future, these will be dealt with in an appropriate manner in the Dutch judicial system.

I can assure your readers that in the Netherlands, those involved in this difficult matter are trying to deal with it with the greatest consideration and utmost care.

Euthanasia is an occurrence in every country of the world. I am proud that the Netherlands chooses not to ignore the issue.


BOUDEWIJN J. VAN EENENNAAM

Ambassador

Royal Netherlands Embassy

Washington

Monsignor diagnoses Catholic scandal correctly

Monsignor Eugene Clark is right on target in blaming the Roman Catholic sex-abuse scandal on "homosexual priests and American immorality" ("Archdiocese spurns sermon on homosexual 'disorder,'" April 23). Far too many Catholic and Protestant leaders are more interested in pleasing the cultural elite than in being faithful ministers of the Word.

Almost all news accounts of priestly abuse speak of "pedophiles" and "child molesters." Monsignor Clark is one of the few church leaders brave enough to call it what it is. Are the bishops so afraid of offending a powerful lobby that they cannot tell the truth?

The terms being used make it sound like the victims are small children and young girls. Far from it. The overwhelming majority of cases involve homosexual priests molesting and recruiting teen-age boys who are too intimidated by the status of the clergy to protest.

An adolescent boy has a difficult time believing that a man he has been taught to respect would do anything wrong. The boy, full of guilt and shame, keeps it a secret from everyone, until years later he realizes he was a victim. Yes, it's true that a 14-year-old boy should know the difference between right and wrong, but he can be coerced by a mature adult especially one in a position of trust into acts that are against his own beliefs and nature.

Homosexuality is an extreme form of sexual perversion. It constitutes a psychiatric disorder of the first class, even though the American Psychiatric Association under pressure from the homosexual lobby removed it from the listing of mental illnesses in its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual a number of years ago.

The scandals in the Catholic Church prove that the Boy Scouts were right to reject the politically correct view that homosexuals should be Scout leaders. The five members of the Supreme Court who sided with the Scouts on this matter saved one of the best character-building organizations in America.

I have doubled my contributions to the Boy Scouts and urge others to do so provided, of course, they continue to uphold their high standards.


WILLIAM F. NIMMO

Virginia Beach, Va.


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