incoming (2006-02)

Private Parts

Elephants vs. Asses

In Ford’s Defense

Women’s Rights, in Reverse

Oppose Alito

Private Parts

The answer? Just make sure that your phone message or e-mail subject line contains the phrase “Bin Laden Determined to Attack within the United States.” That’s the title, of course, of the presidential daily briefing that George W. Bush decided to ignore shortly before the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. So you can be sure that, as it filters through its daily sweep of communications, the National Security Agency will determine that your message is of no particular interest.

Stan Ivester

Elephants vs. Asses

Tennesseans are full of independent spirit. They’ve given Republicans a shot for the past 12 years, and it hasn’t really gotten them anything but budget deficits, lost jobs and body bags in return. They’ve elected Sens. Bill Frist, Fred Thompson and Lamar Alexander and Gov. Don Sundquist during that time, and, for some unfathomable reason, supported George W. Bush twice, despite the fact that Bush isn’t really the type of fiscal conservative Tennesseans usually like.

However, once the state began suffering from eight years of mismanagement under a Republican governor, Tennesseans turned to a Democrat in Phil Bredesen to straighten out the state’s fiscal coffers. Maybe these Tennesseans remember that former President Bill Clinton, despite his personal failings, still balanced the budget, scheduled a pay-off of all our debts and presided over an economy that actually provided advances for regular workers instead of massive stock wins for the hyper-wealthy.

Sure, ideology is important, but what have the Republicans given theocratic conservatives since their sweep of Congress in 1994? An increase in the number of abortions since Clinton left office and a chasm between Christians who support the separation between church and state and fundamentalists who don’t. What have the Republicans given fiscal conservatives since Bush took office? A deficit that is as large as that of the past 42 former presidents combined and an economy that is leaving the middle-class in the dust.

While I don’t completely disagree with Cagle that it will be hard to overcome the notion perceived by some Tennesseans that “liberal” is a dirty word, he’d do well to remember that even the city of Knoxville, once a conservative bastion, is becoming more and more Democratic. The city of Knoxville favored Bredesen over Van Hilleary and Sen. John Kerry over Bush. Knox County remains red (which turns the whole of the county red on those little maps), but the city is becoming as blue as clean water and the collars of those working 40-hour weeks, both “liberal” ideas that Americans favor.

I also agree that there are certain parts of this state that will vote Republican no matter how bad it is for their pocketbooks, but I also hope that a number of working-class voters in this state will realize that to live like a Republican, they need to vote for a Democrat—and that Democrat is Harold Ford Jr.

I trust that the good people of this state may finally be fed-up with the dirty politics of Republicans Tom Delay of Texas and Robert Ney of Ohio and their benefactor Jack Abramoff, and I hope that Tennesseans are turned off by the allegations of Sen. Frist’s insider trading.

After all, absolute power corrupts absolutely, and the Republicans are absolutely corrupt because they’re absolutely in power.

Lara Bergman

In Ford’s Defense

Even so, because some of Ford’s family members have gotten into trouble, Cagle dismisses his candidacy. That analysis is too simplistic. The family baggage could play out in different ways. Ford has drawn a clear line between himself and his ethically challenged relatives, and this sharp contrast is likely to work in his favor. Indeed, recent nonpartisan polls contradict Cagle’s analysis, putting Ford six percentage points ahead of one Republican opponent and only two or three points behind the other two.

Fewer and fewer men and women of integrity are willing to expose themselves to the extreme scrutiny of running for and holding public office. How reassuring that someone of Ford’s stature is taking that difficult road. I hope that on Election Day, Tennesseans will vote for the best candidate, instead of against someone’s uncle. I’m excited to have someone I can support without reservation.

Emily Ellis

Women’s Rights, in Reverse

Amber Gunter

Oppose Alito

The Supreme Court has consistently ruled that no abortion regulation can endanger a woman’s health and safety. It would be a grave mistake to appoint a nominee who is not committed to upholding these precedents.

The ease with which Alito would like to limit our right to an abortion only serves to indicate his willingness to limit other fundamental freedoms as well. I urge you to carefully consider the full effects that confirmation of Judge Alito will have on our personal liberties and tell our senators that you oppose his nomination.

Martha Mallicote

Guidelines for Incoming Mail

© 2006 MetroPulse. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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