Readers write about American guns in the hands of Mexican drug cartels, the roles of executive power and inalienable rights in the US, questions that should be asked about President Bush, and why Israel's attacks on Gaza are not war crimes.
Stop American guns from reaching Mexican cartels
In response to your Jan. 8 article, "Narcotraffickers attack Televisa Mexico's top TV network": The recent brazen attacks carried out by drug cartels in Mexico underscore the importance of President Calderón's commitment to his war on drugs. The violence that claimed over 5,000 lives last year is a problem that both the United States and Mexico must face together. We must remember that the flow of drugs north into the United States is being matched by an influx of thousands of American weapons that flow with near impunity into Mexico.
Mr. Calderón appears to be wholeheartedly committed to breaking the cartel's power. But despite the deployment of over 30,000 federal troops throughout the country, violence has continued to escalate. Through the Merida Initiative, the US has pledged over $1 billion in aid to the Mexican military and civil law enforcement. Both President Bush and President-elect Obama support this plan, but with over 90 percent of the guns seized by Mexican authorities coming from America, we also must take action at home.
The violence in Mexico will not be stopped without first stopping American guns from falling into the deadly hands of the cartels.
US defined by its power distribution
Regarding the Jan. 13 article, "Obama pushes to redirect bailout": I think this article covers with balance and nuance half the picture of US presidential power. The Bush administration not only asserted an enormous expansion of presidential power, but it also asserted in case after case that others have no constitutional rights or even human rights. In my eyes, the core of America lies in its combination of the limits on power of those in power and the inalienable rights of those without power. The Bush administration undermined these principles.