November 15, 2009

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On Birthrights I couldn’t disagree more with the idea of allowing foreign-born people to run for president (Perspective, October 25). That path is a slippery slope. There are plenty of careers to which Beth Daley’s daughter can aspire. It would be better to celebrate what she can pursue and de-emphasize those things that are unavailable to her.

Robert G. Dello Russo / Boston

Having been raised by foreign-born parents, I might have supported Daley’s position at one time. Years ago, most immigrants (without the benefit of bilingual education and ballots in many languages) worked hard to assimilate. Why? Because they wanted to. My first language was Greek, but my parents raised me to be an American. Today, most immigrants don’t wish to nor do they have to assimilate. Increasingly, American citizens and politicians are putting their ethnicity before their citizenship. The birth requirement is even more important today than it was when they wrote the Constitution.

Harry Shuris / Winchester

Our Constitution was written with prayer and great thought. It has served us well. If it is changed to please everyone, it will no longer be the great document that it is. Anyone wanting to make the United States his or her country should be willing to conform to its laws.

Frances Jutras / Hanson

One of our three daughters is adopted from China. She’s an amazing kid. Why can’t Sophie be president? Because she spent the first eight months of her life in an orphanage in Yangzhou? My dad, now 84, was born in the United States but didn’t learn English until he entered Malden’s public schools. He was eligible to be president, but when he was Sophie’s age, he was clearly less acculturated than she is. The constitutional provision makes no sense. Sophie 2040!

Andrew Paven / Hingham

A Family’s View My brother, Joey Fournier, was a high school student working part time at a gas station in Lawrence, trying to earn money to buy a car, when Willie Horton and two accomplices murdered him on October 26, 1974, for $250. The three were sentenced to life with no parole. Michael Blanding’s article, “The Long Shadow of Willie Horton” (October 18), neglected to say Horton was on parole at the time for attempted murder, having served only three years of a minimum nine-year sentence. Horton was given a “second chance” and used it to murder my brother. When Horton was later given another second chance by the Dukakis administration, he attacked a young couple, raping the woman. Mandatory parole and supervision should be required of all released inmates -- and they should only be considered for release after serving the full minimum sentence (nine years must mean nine). A commutation should only be considered if there is overwhelming evidence that an undeniable mistake was made in sentencing.

Donna Fournier Cuomo / North Andover

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  • november 15 globe magazine cover
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