Prince of Peace and puny men

December 21 1981

Prince of Peace and puny men

December 21 1981

Prince of Peace and puny men


How the heavens must be ringing with the laughter of God in derision as puny men and nations meet once again to establish a futile peace (A Bold Bid for Peace, Cover, Dec. 7). We blithely go on our way, ignoring the Prince of Peace whose birth we supposedly celebrate at Christmas. How true are his words: “There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked.” The peace conferences through the years have always ended in failure. We may as well save our time and money. The Bible predicts nuclear warfare, and it will be the culmination of our wickedness.

— MRS. NORMA HOGARTH, Orangeville, Ont.

Growing up with a laugh

Once again, a bleat that says stop treating “us kids” as kids (Podium, Dec. 14). This generation of “young folk” have the nasty habit of never growing up. These perennial kids crowd plazas, shows and amusement park rides. Those that go to universities scream for help, and when the student loan arrives they have no intention of paying it back. Who is responsible for vandalism? The so-called “young folk” have the strength and brains for the job. This is the most irresponsible generation ever,

and the most demanding. If this is all Susan Bosak has to complain about, she should laugh and really grow up.

— ALICE ISABEL ATKINS, Scarborough, Ont.

One man or many?

I was appalled at Maclean’s coverage of the constitution agreement (Cover, Dec. 14). The only reason that Pierre Trudeau did not impose a much more divisive constitution on Canada was the fact that one man, Joe Clark, objected. He began his objections with no public support, a very crticial media and concerns within his own party. But he persevered and, 14 months later, who will

disagree that we have a far better constitution which has broad political and public support? Maclean’s does a severe injustice to Clark by not giving him more prominence. Your approach is not an “Act of Pride.” —JOHN GUTHRIE,


The good, the bad and the big

It is an understatement to suggest that the boardroom nationalists “... are in it as much for profit as for patriotism.” (Business, Dec. 7). Regardless of nationality, business is business, and as such private interest will always be paramount. It has to be thus or the gentlemen wouldn’t be in business for long. If the public’s national interest is to reign supreme, nationalists must strive for a qualitatively different society. Only then can the people be the masters of the socioeconomic, cultural and political mechanisms in our own land.

— RUSS HANSON, Winnipeg

Paying for self-confession

If Fotheringham is so appalled by the eccentrics who populate New York, why did he bother to describe them in such precise detail in his column The Big Apple, Worms And All (Dec. 7)? If New York is a “muggers’ feast,” why did he dare to brunch in the Village, let alone listen to jazz until dawn? Alas, the column is all too consistent with the dotage he admits to in his first paragraph. —JOHN M. COSTELLO,


Ask not for whom the bell tolls

Was Barbara Amiel’s column (Nov. 23) meant to be a satire on the extremely right-wing pro-nuke position? If so, my congratulations. It deliciously recreates the (il)logic: if the Soviets do it, it’s aggression; if the U.S. does it, it’s containment. If the column was not a satire, it marks a new low in misinformation, misuse of evidence, poor reasoning and ignorance. —BARBARA ROBERTS,


Anyone who equates the death of individual soldiers or victims of napalm (both evils beyond excuse) with the instantaneous deaths of thousands, coupled with the random mutation or total destruction of the gene pool of all forms of life on Earth is the most ignorant, most naïve person alive.


Nanaimo, B.C.

Barbara Amiel seems to be proposing that Europe can only avoid nuclear war by creating the conditions that make such a war possible. She is totally out of touch with the issues and people involved and writes with a style more suited to the era of Senator Joe McCarthy. The fear of Europeans in all age groups is the destruction of a continent in a war in which they have no involvement or sympathy. The peace movement in Europe is not irrational or impervious to reason. Such damning comments should be applied to U.S. Secretary of State Alexander Haig, to whom Amiel attributes “reasonable” statements. —JONATHAN S. BIBBY,

Willowdale, Ont.

Letters are edited and may be condensed. Writers should supply name, address and telephone number. Mail correspondence to: Letters to the Editor, Maclean’s magazine, 1+81 University Ave., Toronto, Ont., M5W1A7.

Trust Barbara Amiel to sum up in one page the point that volumes of writing have missed. Her argument is logical, succinct and, as usual, free from fallacy. I suggest that Maclean's mail this column to every thinking person in the “free” world. —GARY L. TEELING,

Peace River, Alta.

Life, death and numbers

Why should Peter Newman be surprised that few Europeans believe that the U.S. stands for peace (Editorial, Nov. 30)? The Soviets claim that NATO has 986 medium-range, forward-based missiles in Europe, compared to 975 for the Warsaw Pact. The 250 Soviet SS-20s are replacements, not additions, and are already countered by 119 British and 144 French missiles, which NATO refuses to include in its arsenal. Yet President Reagan seriously expects the U.S.S.R. to unilaterally scrap all of its SS-20s. The proposed addition of 572 new NATO missiles is seen by Europeans for what it is—provocative and dangerous overkill. —s.P. GOFF,


Why should the U.S.S.R. believe Ronald Reagan’s proposal not to deploy Pershing II and cruise missiles? Only a short while ago he reversed the U.S. policy as to the development of the neutron bomb. The U.S. is always first in the development of new weapons. New weapons will not bring peace. Perhaps if the U.S. set an example and stopped producing additional nuclear warheads, the U.S.S.R. would see them as being more sincere.


The unbelievable is happening. People are starting to accept the use of nuclear weapons! To accept the fact that the bomb can and will be dropped is succumbing to the conditioning of industry and government who, because of a lack of imagination, drive and guts, need the war machine to survive economically. There will be no war. That is the only acceptable condition. —PAUL ClIATO,


Travelling in packs

In your article A Battle to Save the Caribou (Environment, Nov. 16) you named predation by the arctic wolf and overhunting by northern residents as the two major causes of the decline in caribou numbers. The wolf is a difficult hunter to control, but the northern residents should not be. While the preservation of traditional lifestyles is important, the matter of the declining caribou population should be of equal impor-

tance., Hunting restrictions must be imposed immediately if the caribou are to survive. —LIZ WILLIAMS,


Go forth and multiply

I must agree that parents of newborn babies should receive a few days, with pay, to attend to the demands of parenthood (Labor, Nov. 23), but 17 weeks’ maternity leave at 93 per cent of salary is ridiculous. Why should taxpayers pay public servants to reproduce? That’s their own business. —JAMES McKUEN, Millarville, Alta.

A different drummer

The criticism that your reviewer gave the National Ballet’s Napoli was definitely not called for (Dance, Nov. 23). Karen Kain and Peter Schaufuss did a superb job, and the costumes and scenery were wonderful!

—GISELE GAUVREAU, Burlington, Ont.

One of a few

On behalf of Pierrefonds Comprehensive High School’s Handicap Awareness Week, I am happy to congratulate you for using the disabled in your magazine articles and advertisements in the International Year of Disabled Persons. We have surveyed many magazines, and Maclean's was one of the few that included an article or advertisement on disabled persons. —NEIL DESOUZA, Pierrefonds, Que.


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