Tuesday's Letters to the Editor

Neighborly ethics

EDITOR: I read Staff Writer Jeremy Hay's article about the ethics program run by Joshua Glasgow at Sonoma State University ("Some topics too close to home for SSU ethics center," Thursday). To make the program valid, it should start at home, i.e. SSU.

Sonoma State "ethically" charges students a health and safety fee each semester and then hides behind some case law and refuses to pay its fair share for fire and EMS services from the Rancho Adobe Fire District. The university "ethically" expects the taxpayers of this small and financially troubled fire district to service the needs of its 8,000 students, faculty and campus for free. Oh, and did I mention emergency medical services at the lavish, new, for-profit Green Music Center? Ten percent of the calls the fire district responds to are from the SSU campus. The firefighters respond because, "ethically," it is the right thing to do.

Ethics is about evaluating a situation and doing what is right. Cleaning one's own house first is a good place to start and sets a great and valid example of ethical behavior.


Rancho Adobe fire chief

Reality and morality

EDITOR: Columnist George F. Will commented on the film "Zero Dark Thirty" and its depiction of "harsh interrogation techniques," aka torture, quoting some who claim such methods helped lead to Osama bin Laden ("Boundaries of the permissible in war," Jan. 14). He downplayed Sen. Dianne Feinstein's statements, based upon access to official records, denying that waterboarding produced any information leading to bin Laden.

Contrary to Will's source, others dispute that Khalid Sheik Mohammad, water-boarded 183 times, provided any useful information. Regardless, waterboarding is torture. It is against both American and international law.

According to interrogation experts in the FBI and the military, such torture doesn't work. Contrary to Kathryn Bigelow's thrilling propaganda film, there is no evidence that it led to bin Laden. Perhaps CIA officials eventually backed off torture because they wished not to be later regarded, correctly, as war criminals.

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