MONDAY’S LETTERS: Dean and the Democrats, Olbermann’s Powder, Not All Christians Part of Bush’s Base

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By: E&P Staff

In today’s letters, readers comment on another reader’s analysis of the Keith Olbermann anthrax scare, others take issue with Democratic Party Chairman Howard Dean, who was featured in this weekend’s New York Times magazine, and a Newsday reporter says we shouldn’t lump all Christians together with Christian Conservatives.

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Reacting to debra Fitzgerald’s Take on Olbermann

If Debra Fitzgerald (Thursday Letters) can’t make the distinction between an unknown person mailing a purported dose of anthrax to someone’s home as punishment for something he said, and a face-to-face confrontation between a president and a journalist, you should not reward her stupidity by publishing it. I’m not even sure what her point is, except that she obviously doesn’t like Olbermann or Clinton, and she believes that anonymous terrorist threats are the same as a combative interview. The logic leap is bewildering.

Patrick Cant



Ah yes of course. Receiving a suspicious letter and all that goes with it (FBI investigation, etc.) is certainly comparable to being told that you smirk on national television. E&P is entirely in the wrong in its “fair and balanced” coverage.

Please, let’s all send Chris Wallace sympathy emails expressing support after his horrible treatment.

L. Adami-Zill

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Dean and the Democrats

“Fairly or not, Dean has come to embody a species of Democrat that a lot of Americans of both parties find off-putting the 60’s antiwar liberal, reborn with a laptop and a Prius.”

The Democratic voters in Connecticut seemed not to find this philosophy, and/or species of Democrat, “off-putting”.

E.R. White
Houston, Texas



Matt Bai joins a long line of misleaders who spread the myth of the Dean scream by writing this in the The New York Times Magazine: “for the rest of the country, Dean is that lefty who howled on national TV. Some Democratic governors and candidates have avoided Dean when he has been in town, for fear that their opponents would portray them as extremists.?”

That the scream is a myth spread by the media is well-documented. Edward Wasserman, Knight professor of journalism ethics at Washington and Lee University: “In fact the Dean Scream was a fraud, probably the clearest instance of media assassination in recent U.S. political history.”

Democratic governors and candidates have more to fear from myths perpetuated by Bai and others in the media who should know better, but either don’t care or have an agenda, than they do from Dean.

Bill Dunn
Middleton, Wis.

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‘Christian’ Is Not Synonymous With Religious Right

I just read [Greg Mitchell’s] recent column regarding President Bush’s mysterious use of the word “comma” in reference to the Iraq war. After doing an Internet search and finding that the phrase, “Never place a period where God has placed a comma,” is used by the United Church of Christ, you said that the quote is part of “current Christian teaching” and theorized that the president was speaking in code to his religious base.

I am a member of the United Church of Christ and a reporter for Newsday. I can tell you in no uncertain terms that my pro-gay rights, pro-environment, pro-evolution, pro-choice, progressive Christian denomination is in no way, shape or form part of the religious right. Not all Christians are right-wingers bent on banning abortion and imposing prayer in the public schools. The UCC, which indeed adopted the “comma” slogan as part of its marketing campaign, does include some churches that are very conservative. The denomination allows churches to adopt their own policies. But the denomination itself is known for its liberal stance on most major issues. In fact, just last year the UCC voted in favor of same-sex marriage, possibly the first Christian denomination to do so.

Carl MacGowan
Richmond Hill, N.Y.

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