The editorial "Free Trade's Rough Ride," July 24, seems to under emphasize the importance of environmental and labor concerns in the analysis of the long-term benefits of the North American Free Trade Agreement.
Reports about the effects of the agreement with Canada seem to indicate serious problems between longtime friendly neighbors that could have been eliminated by including labor representatives and environmentalists on an equal basis in the preliminary negotiations. There are strong indications that the treaty's terms only emphasize the erosion of democracy that is threatening our economy and stability. When we dream of "One World" we must certainly include all of the world's people. Dorothy Peterson, New Providence, Pa. Freedom of speech
The editorial "The Mouths of Babes," July 28, is admirable insofar as it goes. It ignores, however, the core issue: the need to reinterpret the First Amendment to reflect its original purpose - to protect not filth and incitement to murder but that free flow of opinion necessary to an informed citizenry and a socially responsible electorate. If this change is still possible, the degeneration of national morals can be curbed at its source. Nathaniel Weyl, Sky Valley, Ga. `Breakthrough Leaders'
Thank you for publishing "Halting the Clenched Fist of Abuse," July 28. The plight of the battered wife is not some new phenomenon, of course, or merely the result of drunkenness or drug abuse. The only thing new is that society is now offering an escape for the woman.
It used to be that if a neighbor or one of the children called the police, the officer would merely chide the husband and perhaps mention that he was tired of responding to such calls. Fear of reprisal from the husband and lack of access to funds for escape kept the woman prisoner. Respect was given to the man as head of the household when respect was unwarranted. Society has a way of covering up this abnormal behavior and blaming the victim. Betty Spiers Sands, San Francisco
The article "A Warden's Respect Unlocks a Prison," July 21, is a most welcome narration of man's humanity to man.
Warden Dennis Luther states, however: "We don't know how to rehabilitate people or change their behavior...." Let me say that there's nothing like repentance, regeneration, and reformation - old-fashioned but potent religious virtue - to bring about the desired redemption of individual inmates. Warden Luther should encourage the help of dedicated volunteer religious workers as is done in prisons in New York state and elsewhere under the auspices of local churches.
In the tight situation over which the warden reigns, I was surprised there was no mention of God or religion as influential factors for respect and betterment. Charles F. Rasoli, Long Island City, N.Y. Alaska's Denali Park
Good coverage regarding the news article "Alaska's Denali Park Faces Growth Issues," July 7. But regarding the Kantishna miners within the park, I would like to point out that it has been almost seven years since mining ended in Kantishna, yet the Park Service still has purchased none of the claims.
Steve Hicks, Livingston, Mont.