Making drugs legal
would cut crime
Re: "Sound the alarm," Thursday:
Your editorial on fixing Philadelphia's broken criminal justice system put forth all the usual nonproductive ideas. The problem is tremendous. It requires help from many corners. Good luck.
The truth is that if you want to stop crime, you need to take away the money. The illogical belief that making drugs illegal controls the drug problem has been an abject failure for years.
Making the possession of drugs legal, and at the same time regulating and taxing the deliverers of the product, kills two birds with one stone. First, big money is gone, and so is big crime. Second, taxing the proceeds pays for the regulation of the process, with extra benefits as well. Those who contend legalizing drugs would create a bigger problem don't understand facts. How could the problem be any worse than what we have presently?
was a farce
The U.S. government is wrong to recognize the Honduran elections as legitimate. We are alienating ourselves from Brazil and other allies who see the elections as consolidating the success of a coup.
Honduras needs new, free, fair elections that are not held under a coup government. Such elections, if overseen by independent electoral observers, would be recognized by both the international community and the Honduran people.
Venezuela's Hugo Chávez alleges the CIA helped overthrow the populist government led by Manuel Zelaya, which the U.S. denies. The winner of the supposed election, Porfirio Lobo, is from the rich, elite class that will push a free-market agenda that will hurt the Honduran people.
Specter stay loyal
Sen. Arlen Specter made no bones about it that he was switching parties to save his political hide and did not intend to be a "loyal" Democrat. But thanks to his Democratic primary opponent Rep. Joe Sestak, Specter has had no choice but to appear loyal. Obama gave Specter his blessing, but he should be thanking Sestak for making Specter toe the line. Left to his own devices, Specter could have been a major annoyance in the Senate.
There is an interesting dynamic going on in this race. There are many Republicans who cannot tolerate Specter. They also believe that Republican Pat Toomey might have a better chance against Sestak in the general election than against Specter. I would not be surprised to see some Republicans change their registration to vote in the primary.
Frank J. Gastner
Need new group
to preserve buildings
Philadelphia's Committee of Seventy is a vital asset to our city. However, for the public's well-being, we could also use a group like the League of Preservation Voters, a product of the Historic Districts Council of New York, which represents more than 100 neighborhoods.
New York, like Chicago, Boston, New Orleans, San Francisco, London, and Paris, has many advocates for the conservation of architectural heritage, each dealing with the segment that they know best.
Especially in Philadelphia, with 300 years of American architecture, prospective political candidates should have to state to such an organization their position on how important structures are treated.
Gersil N. Kay
Colleges need help
in handling rapes
I agree 100 percent that colleges and universities should accurately report all crime incidents ("Hush-hush subject," Dec. 2). I also agree that institutional barriers may impede or deter students from reporting incidents. In response to this point, I would direct any interested parties to consider existing on-campus resources for students.
As a certified sexual-assault counselor and a former program coordinator of the Rape Education and Prevention Program at Saint Joseph's University, I strongly believe that there is much more to be done on college campuses across the nation. But why do we immediately place universities at fault for admitting that something unpleasant has happened on campus? Have we truly opened our eyes and our minds to the topic of sexual violence, allowing students and community members alike to speak out without fear of judgment?
If we ever hope to eradicate this violence, we must consider the ways in which we view and treat sexual assault.
out of his element
Re: "Challenging science dogma," Thursday:
Exactly how is Rick Santorum qualified to deem the scientific, controversial give-and-take on global warming an "ideology that trumps the pursuit of truth"? Whose truth, Rick? Yours? It took the nascent Republican candidate for the 2012 presidency a total of one paragraph to change the argument from global warming, which he knows nothing about, to more familiar, comfortable, vote-getting turf - Bible thumping about evolution.
Kenneth M. Foti