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Volume 71, Issue 106, Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Opinion
 

Letters to the Editor

Offensive speech not reason to restrict rights

To the editor:

In her Feb. 26 guest commentary, °°Hateful speech has no place on campus°± (Opinion), Colleen Herndon said she °°respects and applauds the University for having a free speech zone available for everyone, then goes on to decry that everyone is able to exercise his or her right to free speech.Å0Ñ2

°°Free speech zones°± are generally referred to by that name without any mention of irony. By definition, if you are restricted to speaking in certain areas, it is not free speech. So to see a newspaper and columnist speak of free speech zones is enough to make Big Brother smile. 

Herndon noted how a non-campus group came into the °°restricted speech zones°± and began to verbally attacked gays and Muslims. Herndon believes the group leader°Øs speech crossed the line of what should be allowed. She wants to use the power of the state to shut the group up.

I fail to see how setting the precedent of removing someoneÅ0Ç8s right to speak is going protect or even help the gay community or Muslims or any other group that may be targeted. I fail to see why someone offending you lets you take away his or her freedom.Å0Ñ2

It seems everything about this story should have led to everyone praising how well free speech in this country works.

I just want to remind everyone that it is not the strong, the rich or the powerful who need to be guaranteed a right to be free (as they can look out for themselves). The weak, the poor and the oppressed are the ones who must be protected.

Adam Perdue
Post-baccalaureate student, 
College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences


Iraq war legal, overdue

To the editor:

Timothy O°ØBrien°Øs column °°Students must rise up against unjust war°± (Thursday, Opinion) about students speaking out against this °°illegal°± war is almost comical.

First and foremost, let°Øs get one thing straight °™ this war is not illegal. After the first Gulf War in 1991, Saddam Hussein signed a cease-fire agreement. And the United Nations forced sanctions on Iraq to end its chemical weapons program. Hussein violated these agreements numerous times. He blatantly ignored the cease-fire agreement by shooting at U.S. planes daily patrolling the No Fly Zone.

Also, he continued to defy the U.N. and continued to develop chemical and biological weapons, which he used against his own people. 

In 1998, President Clinton signed the Iraqi Liberation Act, which stated that °°the government of Iraq is in material and unacceptable breach of its international obligations°± and urged the president °°to take appropriate action to bring Iraq into compliance with its international obligations.°± 

Hussein°Øs regime was also a supporter of terrorism. He would send money to the family of suicide bombers. He also allowed terrorist camps to operate within his country.

This war with Iraq has been coming for a long time and it was only until after 9/11 that President Bush decided to take action and remove this brutal dictator and topple his regime.

Brandon Smith
Political science junior


Letters Policy

Letters to the editor are welcome from all members of the UH community and should focus on issues, not personalities. Letters must be typed and must include the author's name, telephone number and affiliation with the University. Anonymous letters will not be published. Letters are subject to editing for clarity, language and space. Letters may be delivered in person to Room 151C, Communication; e-mailed to dclettrs@mail.uh.edu ; or faxed to (713) 743-5384.

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