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Cost of Terror to a Free Society

As the news about this attack developed throughout Tuesday morning many began to call it the second Pearl Harbor. Pearl Harbor took place under a liberal administration. President Franklin D. Roosevelt took, or was given, vast emergency powers. When it all ended, our freedom was secure and expanding. If this is a second Pearl Harbor, what emergency powers are we going to give very conservative President Bush? There are already calls for all of us to pull together. Will our freedom be secure, let alone be expanding, when all of the dust settles?

David L. Eastman

Costa Mesa

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The worst thing that we as a nation can do right now is to retaliate immediately. While very tempting, we should not allow ourselves to go down to the level of those terrorists. Sometimes we really have to pay a very high price to live in an open society. It is times like this that demand a great amount of circumspection on our part. Let us stay calm and resort to the use of reason first; there is time enough for the use of force if it turns out that doing so is the reasonable thing.

Victor W. Monsura

Garden Grove

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Tuesday’s horrendous events have produced immediate devastation unprecedented in our short history of domestic terrorism. Tens of thousands of lives may have been snuffed out. As hard as it may be to contemplate, these losses were probably not the primary goal of the terrorists. More likely they were merely bloody stepping stones along which to prod the U.S. toward becoming, irretrievably, a police state. Those who truly hate America will be most interested in watching our government pull the plug on our Bill of Rights--already in critical condition as “collateral damage” in the war on drugs and the war for votes. The sweetest revenge against America will be watching the “land of the free and the home of the brave” become, by our own hand, the “land of papers, please, and the home of staying home.”

Kent Van Cleave

Bedford, Ind.


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