Wednesday, May 12, 2004

From Today's New York Times

To the Editor: Re "The President and Women" (editorial, May 9): To shrink national women's issues to a morning-after pill or abortion rights offends many women. George W. Bush knows what women want, starting with his No Child Left Behind program. Move on to lower taxes for families to spend and save money as they see fit. Women want to improve life, liberty and equality for themselves and the families they love. Professional women are no less professional. I don't want Condoleezza Rice, the national security adviser, distracted from the war on terror to secure foreign women's reproductive rights. And I'm not offended that Karen Hughes, the president's adviser, said that particularly after 9/11, Americans value every single life. America's strong, capable, thoughtful adult women are insulted by notions that our political persuasions are monolithic. President Bush had the temerity to place women in influential government positions not to advance special interests but because they are "the best man for the job." Enough of this morning-after business. JULIE FAIRCHILD Dallas, May 11, 2004 From Today's New York Times To the Editor: It baffles me how "In Abuse, a Portrayal of Ill-Prepared, Overwhelmed G.I.'s" (front page, May 9) seems to suggest that the prisoner abuse stemmed from a lack of training and leadership. Do we really need to be taught not to commit such atrocities? As an American, I'm offended at the suggestion and quite honestly find it preposterous that without some particular military training or supervision my fellow citizens lack the moral intuition not to strip prisoners and pile them on each other for a good laugh. There is undoubtedly a need to find an explanation for these crimes, but to attribute them to overburdened and inexperienced G.I.'s is ludicrous and rich fodder for an ever-increasing hatred of America in the Arab world. MOHAMMED SHAHEEN Cambridge, Mass., May 9, 2004

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