Ms. Sheehan apparently takes the Virginia Seuffert approach to research. [Liberals need to be more open-minded, Viewpoints, Aug. 27]
As others have pointed out, complete with citations that anyone who wants to be informed can visit, Obama did not say that Republicans (or conservatives for that matter) take pride in being ignorant. Instead, his remarks were quite clearly directed at his opponents who were making fun of his statements regarding energy policy (specifically his comment about tire pressure, a comment which turns out to be true and supported by the “Republican” California).
If, as Ms. Sheehan states, “Being well informed is always availing yourself of differing opinions and sources.” I suggest that she and Ms. Seuffert actually start looking at other sources when forming their opinions. Both articles have included claims which are quite easily refuted by looking at the facts.
Submitted to WednesdayJournalOnline.com
You can see Obama using the phrase, “It’s like these guys take pride in being ignorant,” here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=akjXqfvLu28.
And, of course, you are right: He is not trying to impugn all Republicans or even all voters who support John McCain. He is using it to describe the sleazy, mendacious, dishonest tactics of the Republican operatives who printed “Obama’s Energy Plan” on a bunch of tire gauges. He goes on to say of them: “They think it’s funny that they’re making fun of something that is actually true.”
Earlier in the speech, he explains how, even though the tire gauge comment was initially tossed off when someone in the audience asked what he as an individual could do, the reality is that the 3-4 percent energy savings that would accrue if everyone in the nation had properly inflated tires is more than the amount of new energy that would come from the offshore drilling McCain is asking for.
Ms. Sheehan’s out-of-context misappropriation of this phrase-implying that Obama said it about all Republicans everywhere-is the very sort of ignorance-based lying that Obama was talking about.
I, for one, am tired of it. You don’t like his plans for investments in research on more efficient cars and a better energy grid, fine. Say so. But those who choose to run a campaign based on ignorant lies about their opponent have no right to look shocked when they get called ignorant liars.
That aside, what Ms. Sheehan’s letter and K.C. Sullivan’s note make clear is that, by rhetorically assuming bad faith on the part of Obama supporters, Ms. Seuffert squanders any chance of convincing them or starting up any dialogue with them. True dialogue requires mutual respect, and Ms. Seuffert demonstrates that she has none for anyone who is considering supporting Obama. If all she hopes to accomplish is to see her words in print and get a few “You go girl!” shout outs from those who already agree with her, she has succeeded mightily. But that’s all she has accomplished.
I’m sure others will comment on other facets of Ms. Seuffert’s latest column, but one thing jumped out at me right away: Why do people like Ms. Seuffert, who define themselves as of the sort who see government as part of the problem rather than part of the solution, think the best way to reduce the number of abortions is to make them illegal?
On Aug. 28, 1963, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. stood before thousands at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. and challenged Americans to live up to the promises of the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution, which guarantee the inalienable rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for all citizens, regardless of the color of their skin. Dr. King had faith that “we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood.”
On Aug. 28, 2008, exactly 45 years later, Barack Obama accepted his party’s choice to be the Democratic nominee for president of the United States of America. Obama is a true son of Dr. King, dreaming that he will not be judged by the color of his skin but by the content of his character. America will be truly free and will achieve even more for all when we are united, all of us together, working for what is best for all Americans. This should be our hope and our dream, taking the message of Dr. King and making it our own.
Especially during that week, as Dr. King proclaimed, “Let freedom ring from the snowcapped Rockies of Colorado!”
La Shawn K. Ford
State Representative, 8th District
Bring a check to the polls in November!
Senator Obama has made a laundry list of promises in this upcoming election. His first is to rescind the Bush tax cuts and secondly to nail the filthy rich and businesses of all sizes. Taking away the Bush tax cuts will result in a two-income family earning $60,000 paying an additional $7,500 per year. Expanding that out to an 8-year term means you will pay a full year’s wages to the government for no additional benefits.
As you vote for Obama/Biden, drop off a personal check for one year’s salary and look over to your neighbor who hasn’t fallen prey to idol worship but will also be required to pay up. That check will not cover any of the expanded government programs that will remove money from your pocket and transfer it to someone who believes he is a victim of the evil Bush administration. This promise of reduced taxes for the middle class is the three-card monte game that you see on the Dan Ryan el. There is no way to win-or even break even.
This election might result in our nation enjoying the leadership and prosperity we see in Cook County and Springfield. Sen. Obama is a student of and a product of big-city Chicago politics and how can we complain about that? We might even see Emil Jones appointed to fill out the remainder of Obama’s term!
Watching the 2008 Democratic Convention on TV reminded me of the Democrat’s 1932 convention, held in Chicago, which nominated and elected Franklin Delano Roosevelt.
Conditions in America today are much like, and even worse, than they were in 1932. The Republicans had held the presidency for three terms during the 1920s. They had created conditions in America that were terrible. There was a need for the presidency to change in Washington, D.C., so voters elected FDR.
That same overwhelming need for change in Washington is required today and the Democratic Party is once again offering that change.
Barack Obama reminds us of the great orator and reformer FDR. Michelle Obama reminds us of Eleanor Roosevelt. The country and world are fortunate for Barack’s and Michelle’s presence in our American political arena. The nation needs their presence in the U.S. presidency much as it needed Franklin and Eleanor in 1933.