Logic regarding Syria

is a bit confusing

It’s been awhile since I took Logic 101, so let’s see if I have these things straight:

President Assad has killed thousands of his own people. To punish him, the U.S. should kill a few thousand more.

We need to attack Syria with military force because Assad used chemical weapons, but killing people with bombs and bullets is all right because that’s customary.

President Obama changing his mind or admitting an error in judgment would be a worse crime than starting a war.

Assad is a nasty, cruel man and the world would be well rid of him. But according to the rules of war, we can’t attack him directly, so we should kill innocent Syrians, plus some of our own troops, to show him he’s in the wrong.

Maybe I need to go back and take another course in logic.

Margaret Fleming

Retired educator, Tucson

Killing of javelinas

was not


Re: the Sept. 5 article “7 aggressive javelinas killed on east side.”

I am outraged! The article said the javelinas were euthanized, but they weren’t euthanized — they were murdered. The definition of euthanized is an “act or practice of killing domestic animals that are hopelessly sick or injured for reasons of mercy.”

These weren’t domestic animals, nor were they sick or injured, and no one showed any mercy. They were trapped and murdered with sniper rifles. The article goes on to say that it would have been inhumane to relocate the javelinas. What is worse, murdering them with sniper rifles or moving them to another location where they might have had a chance at life?

If people would only understand that we live in their desert. They were here first. Don’t leave the garbage cans out for the animals to get into. They are hungry and looking for food. The people are at fault here, not the javelinas, but they had to die due to stupidity.

Linda L. Sanders

Retired, Tucson

Runners, don’t ruin lives

through traffic stupidity

We recently moved to Tucson. The other night we were driving on a road that is undergoing construction. It was dark, the road is only two lanes and very busy, oncoming lights from vehicles are very bright and the road narrow.

We encountered a person running on the edge of the pavement inside the orange traffic cones — wearing a dark shirt and dark shorts, no light, no reflective material on their person.

I feel very lucky to have avoided hitting the runner or having to swerve into oncoming traffic to avoid him, and this person should feel very lucky to be alive. Please, runners, be safe and don’t ruin anyone’s life.

Nancy Thom

Retired, Tucson

Force-feeding regarded

as torture by the UN

Re: the Aug. 21 article “Doctor: Calif. feeding won’t be like Gitmo.”

The article wrongfully identifies the hunger strikers at Guantanamo Bay as “terror suspects.” Of the 166 men held at Guantanamo Bay, 86 have been cleared for release and are guilty of no crime and 48 are being held without charge or trial (in violation of habeas corpus). None of the hunger strikers is a suspect in any terrorism charges. Of the 120 hunger strikers, 40 are being forced-fed twice a day through a tube inserted in the nose down into the stomach.

More disappointingly, the article fails to mention that any force-feeding is classified by the United Nations as “torture” and “prohibited by international law.” The terms we use to label people fundamentally change the way we interact with them and how we view their plight. Those refusing to negotiate with hunger strikers and resort to torture are suspect of terror, not the hunger strikers.

Daniel Wilson

Carpenter, Tucson

Imagination is

mother of invention

Re: the Aug. 25 column “Imagination. … Is there an app for that?”

I agree wholeheartedly with Bonnie Henry’s column concerning imagination. The problem nowadays is that children have to be entertained in the home and school — otherwise they are bored. Imagination is the greatest tool for invention.

Teresa Scopellite

Retired, Tucson

My $258 parking ticket

was unwarranted

I just received a $258 parking ticket in a dark and virtually deserted midtown neighborhood at 9:14 p.m. for “parking within 20 feet of a crosswalk.” Not in a crosswalk, mind you, nor alongside a red-painted area of curb, nor even within 20 feet of a corner. There is nothing remotely unsafe to anybody about where I parked. I am not some University of Arizona parent who’s in town one week per year and will be griping in some faraway place about how Tucson tries to soak out-of-town visitors with absurd parking fees; I live here year-round, I pay property taxes on 10 properties, and I vote.

Will Nelson


A second look

at UA ‘graying trend’

Re: the Aug. 25 article “UA profs part of a graying trend.”

To blame “surges in so-called reluctant retirees” for the overall age growth of tenured University of Arizona professors is misleading. The Star’s figures show that tenured faculty numbers grew from 1,179 to 1,216, or only 3.1  percent, from 2003 to 2012, even as senior professors worked longer. During this period, student enrollment grew by 8.5 percent, according to the online UA Fact Book, produced by the same UA office that provided the Star’s data. If tenure-track faculty hiring had kept pace, there would have been about 63 more tenured professors today. Because the university tends to hire into the lower, younger faculty ranks, these missing teachers would have eliminated the deficit of 58 tenured faculty under 50 in the Star’s table.

The main obstacles to refilling junior faculty ranks should be sought elsewhere, in the university’s spending priorities and the state’s budget decisions.

William H. Wing

Emeritus professor, UA