Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Letters to the Editor

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Letters to the Editor

Article excerpt

Religious leaders were needed in Annapolis

In response to the Nov. 27 article, "As Israelis, Palestinians head to Annapolis, Syrians sign up": I think there has been a lot of excitement about the Annapolis peace conference. There seem to have been some major players there who were not present in the past. Hence, it is already seen as a success and result-oriented.

However, there are some fundamentals that are missing, as they have been in previous meetings (Madrid, Oslo, Camp David).

One issue is that world leaders fail to understand that the heart of this conflict is religious - not secular. The land is in demand, not for its economic or materialistic value but its religious historical value.

Yet we did not see any religious leaders present. We have secular leaders from various faiths trying to reach peace. Now one may have asked: Who to invite when there are such differing opinions and diversity of views?

World leaders need to reach a just and lasting peace.

By rushing to try to find solutions to a conflict, we need to keep in mind that failure has the potential to cause loss of hope for many generations.

There must be proposals by academics, religious scholars, and secular leaders to bring this historic conflict to some resolution.

Naveed Sami Birmingham, Ala.

Do punishments help the victim?

Regarding the Nov. 26 Opinion piece: "In child pornography, fight harder": We have many problems in our society - drug abuse, gang violence, hate crimes, child porn, and prostitution. In each case, the proposed solution is the same: stricter laws and harsher punishments.

Every time that solution is implemented, the results are the same. We get to pat ourselves on the back, feeling good because we've "done something," and ignore the fact that the problem itself remains the same or even gets worse.

We are a nation of quick fixes and instant gratification, a society that resists change, and the idea of making fundamental changes in the way our society thinks is repulsive to many of us. …

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