- The Washington Times - Friday, April 7, 2006

An unworkable amnesty plan

The Senate “compromise” on the illegal-alien issue is a vile mistake that will come back to haunt senators who vote for it, even after they leave office (“Senate GOP to filibuster alien bill,” Page 1, Thursday). Their naive plan is unworkable and is reminiscent of something drawn in the sand like a football play at a pickup game on the back lot. A bunch of eighth-graders could do better. Crying crocodile tears about compassion just doesn’t wash.

Each illegal alien and supporter knew exactly what he or she was doing. Those who purchased fraudulent Social Security cards or birth certificates knew exactly what they were doing. Those who took cash under the table to avoid income taxes knew what they were doing. Those who stole benefits intended for American citizens knew exactly what they were doing.

Do Sens. Bill Frist and John McCain really believe that 11 million illegals, who have been allowed to run free for years, will hop a bus to Mexico City and hold up their hands to ask for a ticket back? Only in Oz.

Labor-union members were correct to boo Mr. McCain at his latest town meeting. He has failed the test of leadership. The legal citizens of Arizona and Tennessee will show their displeasure in short order. One thing is for certain in 2008, neither Mr. Frist nor Mr. McCain will be on any ticket for president.

WILSON FARIS

Gaithersburg

I support the House bill making it a felony to come into the United States illegally, but I believe most U.S. citizens would be satisfied if that were negotiated out as long as everything else in the House bill remained. The Senate proposal with its two years, two to five years, and over five years plan is insane. It’s unenforceable, and everybody, including the Senate and the illegal aliens, ought to know it, or they are fools.

Our prisons house many U.S. citizens convicted of nonviolent crime. If a bona fide citizen doesn’t pay a traffic ticket, a warrant for his arrest is issued. If he doesn’t go to court and pay up, he is jailed. How can it be that people can break into our country and just be absolved? Our system of law and order is breaking down; amnesty for illegal aliens will snap it.

I’m a lifelong Republican, and I trusted the president’s judgment on the need to invade Iraq because I believed he had the benefit of information that I did not have. However, based on what I do know about the invasion across our borders and what I see as his putting the interests of the invaders ahead of the interests of citizens, I have lost confidence in him.

He’s dragging down everything conservative Republicans have worked for since Ronald Reagan’s election. It is deplorable that he is breaking down the coalition that brought the Republican Party to power. Democrats rejoice.

THOMAS MCFADDEN

McLean

The need for high-tech weapons

Fred Reed’s opinion that high-tech weapons are no longer needed since the end of the Cold War assumes that there will never be an enemy as threatening on a large scale as the Soviet Union (“Today’s weapons overly high-tech,” Business, March 31).

Look to the East. Look at China’s immense and unreasonable weapons buildup and its attempt to build high-tech weapons comparable to ours. High-tech weapons, so casually sneered at, require a long lead time. It took a long time to develop the sort of technical superiority that allowed us to “win” the Cold War against the USSR. Let’s not get into the mode we were in before World War II, when we stopped developing weapons systems capable of acting as a deterrent, which put us into a position of having to play catch-up.

In this era, we won’t have time to play catch-up. That said, there also is a great need for our military to have the capability to fight guerrilla wars. The two needs should not be and aren’t mutually exclusive.

JOHN R. MCCOY

Sykesville, Md.

Stop horse slaughter

The pro-slaughter people go on about unwanted horses and what to do with them. I have seen nothing that leads me to believe America will be inundated eventually with equines wandering the streets if slaughter is stopped. I agree with Christopher J. Heyde (“Slaughtering horses is cruel,” Op-Ed, yesterday). Let’s just end this nonsense and get on with the business of taking care of these animals. The anti-slaughter folks aren’t going away; contrarily, their camp is growing in both numbers and resolve.

Mr. Heyde is correct that slaughter is not euthanasia. If you have trouble making the distinction, get a dictionary. I have heard that euthanasia is costly. My vet charged me $100 to euthanize a horse, and that was on a Sunday in the pouring rain. My horse is buried on my place, but I understand many areas won’t allow this because of ground-contamination issues. Apparently, the chemicals in the horses’ systems leach out into the ground and water. Yet it’s OK to slaughter them and feed them to the folks overseas and to our zoo animals.

An estimated 40,000 horses are stolen from their owners every year in the United States. Many of these animals end up in slaughter plants. How many of them were “unwanted”?

We also should commend Ford Motor Co. It has stepped up to the plate to assist in saving America’s wild horses from slaughter. If I ever buy another car, it will be a Mustang, but in the meantime, I’ll be a Ford truck owner for life.

While the pro-slaughter folks keep shouting about all the unwanted horses, I question their motives. I wonder how people who consider themselves to be true horsemen can advocate such an inhumane practice. I speculate on whether they have ever witnessed a horse being slaughtered. I have to believe that if they ever were to watch the entire process, it would make them as ill physically as it does me. I have to believe that.

THERESA MESSICK

Pleasant Hill, Mo.

Patience needed in Iraq

In response to Donald Lambro’s “Pressure on Iraq” (Commentary, Thursday): Our patience shouldn’t be “coming to an end.” Who do we think we are, hinting at ultimatums to a democratically elected government? Certainly the world is learning the darker side of elections in the Middle East. Many Americans would like us to leave. So would Iran, unless our staying means Adel Abdul Mahdi, Iranian-backed SCIRI candidate, gets anointed to be the “real” prime minister.

Iraq seems to slip slowly into a civil war in which generally Iraqi Shi’ites and Sunnis kill each other. This causes more deaths at present than does al Qaeda in Iraq, which may have a new leader. One of the possible reasons Abu Musab Zarqawi supposedly was replaced was because his “supervisors” recognize that on his watch Muslims are killing Muslims. That’s bad pubic relations.

Moreover, the Iraqi government will be more representative if the 19-member National Security Council, which incorporates all major political parties, goes on track for some serious power sharing.

We should be encouraging our “wards,” and not be a kingmaker in a government we have midwifed and should allow to live increasingly on its own. Certainly, reinstating funds, currently appropriated down, for building democracy in Iraq should be on our agenda.

We should concentrate our efforts on doing the other good things, such as training and backing up Iraqi troops, rebuilding infrastructure and generally helping Iraqis “clear, hold and build” — the White House’s stated strategy for victory — on their future.

ONA BUNCE

Bethesda


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