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Letters to the Editor



A Startled Crab?

To the Editor:

Jackson Baker, in his assessment of Howard Dean ("Giving 'Em Hell," September 4th issue), lays out very clearly why Dean is thus far leaving the other Democratic candidates behind in fund-raising and in the polls: He is far ahead of his rivals in Bush-hating and in pandering to the ideals so precious to liberals. But if he wins the nomination, watch him scuttle like a startled crab in a rightward direction.

William L. Huettel


Revisionist History

To the Editor:

Regarding Chris Leek's remarkable rhetorical summary of neoconservative fascism (Letters to the Editor, September 4th issue): Yes, were it not for the Flyer and its liberal blame-America-first ilk, where would Osama bin Laden, nay indeed, where would world-wide terrorism be? Saddam Hussein must eagerly await each new issue so he can see just how well his allies across the sea are working on his behalf.

Leek certainly is right when he says we can count on more terrorist attacks but not because terrorists are encouraged by the editorial pages of Memphis' newsweekly. I think the unjustified invasion of Iraq might prove to be a little more motivating. I wonder how many terrorists really take the time to see who is playing at the Blue Monkey this week.

Fortunately for the world, George W. Bush does have newsweeklies like the Flyer questioning his motives for leading us into a war for reasons that have never been satisfactorily explained. I fail to see how planting the seeds of future terrorism can possibly be construed as a war against terror. And I fail to see the patriotism of not questioning the very questionable behavior of this administration on all fronts, from the lies used to lead us to war to the glaringly obvious political graft given to Halliburton, Bechtel, etc., to pay for the rebuilding of Iraq.

This week, the president asked for $87 billion to help pay for that rebuilding, a big chunk of which will go directly into the pockets of the people who are paying for his 2004 presidential bid. And why do we need to pay them $87 billion to rebuild Iraq? Because the president ordered it bombed in the first place.

FDR did have an advantage, though. There was a clear and present danger to American democracy. We didn't have to question his motives for leading this country to war because the reasons were clear. Pearl Harbor was attacked by planes bearing the markings of the Japanese empire.

Yes, we were also attacked on September 11th. But not by Iraq. Not by Saddam Hussein.

Jeff Crook


To the Editor:

Leek counsels patience with the administration's progress (sic) in Iraq, insisting that Bush's critics are aiding the enemy. In support of his "free-speech-as-treason" thesis, Leek refers the reader to WWII history.

He cautions that in WWII the British lost every battle they fought in North Africa for the first two years. Wrong. Between 1940 and 1942, the Brits and Aussies won victories right and left in North Africa against the Germans and Italians.

What is most troubling about this tirade against liberals is that it is misinformed. The author compares America's response to Pearl Harbor to its actions after September 11, 2001. Whoa! Did Iraqi kamikaze pilots crash into the World Trade Center? No. They were Saudi pilots and organizers. Leek's analogy would fit only if we attacked Saudi Arabia in retaliation for September 11th.

Leek is glad that there was no liberal press during WWII. This ain't WWII and Bush is no FDR. Free speech is beneficial: People don't like being cozened out of their votes, their money, or their lives.

Mark Ledbetter


Karaoke Singers are People Too

To the Editor:

With regard to Stephen Tapp's letter concerning the After Dark "Live Music Schedule" (September 4th issue): He suggests that karaoke and DJ listings be "dropped altogether." Karaoke, as ridiculous as [it may be], does in fact involve a live singer. DJs as well perform their craft live. Like it or not, techno and house are "real" forms of music with attendant subgenres and cliques just like rock, jazz, blues, etc.

It's a big city, and there's a lot of music out there. Just because you don't like something on the menu doesn't mean that you should ask for it to be removed.

Grant "Grunt" Wade


The Memphis Flyer encourages reader response. Send mail to: Letters to the Editor, POB 1738, Memphis, TN 38101. Or call Back Talk at 575-9405. Or send us e-mail at letters@memphisflyer.com. All responses must include name, address, and daytime phone number. Letters should be no longer than 250 words.

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