United we stand ...; A heartbeat away; Probing questions

United we stand ...

It is time to stop the lies! Enough is enough.

To put the record straight, I am a solid democrat, but this plea is for all Americans who wish to interject some much-needed dignity and honesty into what is becoming a mudslinging fest. I am as much ashamed of my candidate as I am of the opponent; to try and proportion more dishonesty on one candidate over the other is a waste of time and a diversion from the main point.

What is the main point? Americans deserve and are desperate for the truth. We are all tired of trying to discern what is real from what is smear tactics — and I, for one, am weary of the effort.

Who is to blame? We, the American people are to blame for allowing this to happen; and for putting on the blinders when our candidate speaks an untruth; and viciously attacking the opponent when he or she speak an untruth.

Come on people, are we really that dumb? Sure we can blame the media, but who is the media trying to reach; the answer is as simple as the solution. They, the media, for whatever reason, are in the business of getting our attention. I say lets give it to them by letting them know that we will not tolerate their misled attempts at journalism.

What is at stake? We are at a desperate turning point in the history of our great nation and the outcome of the world at large. Status quo politics will not get us through this tough period of limited fuel, terrorism and the decline of human dignity in general.

What is the answer? We all, as members of the human nation, must make it known that this election will not be desecrated by blind ambition and a disregard for honesty, integrity and respect.

Remember folks, we are first Creature of God, secondly Americans and finally either a Republican or Democrat! I have friends, family and co-workers that I respect and admire that are from both parties. Both parties have real concerns and real answers to the problems that confront us all. The only way to get through these hard times is by uniting because the adage is as true today as it ever was: United we stand, divided we fall!

A concerned American.

Mike Richmond

Ashland

A heartbeat away

Aside from past performance and current promises, how do we judge the qualifications of the two presidential candidates? Is there anything that they do during the campaign that gives us insight into their future actions on critical, potentially world-endangering decisions? Yes, it is the nominee's judgment exercised in selecting a running mate!

Barack Obama, with foreign policy experience cited as a weakness, chose senate colleague Joseph Biden, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Biden is an expert on foreign relations, having served many years on that bipartisan committee, the last four with Obama.

John McCain, with economy cited as a weakness and age a concern, chose Sarah Palin, a 44-year-old governor of Alaska whom he had met only twice. Alaska's economy has little in common with the lower 48.

The 72-year-old McCain has a mother who is 96, but his father and grandfather died at ages 70 and 61 — both of heart attacks! John McCain's judgment could put Sarah Palin a heartbeat away from being our president. His disregard for the stability of the world, if anything befalls him, is astounding!

Roy Sutton

Ashland

Probing questions

John McCain is a remarkable man. I marvel at his ability to survive the unimaginable pain and suffering in what he saw as a good cause. My admiration would be increased, though, had he recognized that the Vietnamese misadventure was a tragic mistake (as many of us did early on!), and then had had the integrity to refuse to be a part of the invasion of a small country that posed absolutely no threat to the U.S.A. And I wonder if he felt compassion for the tens of thousands who needlessly died before our military forces loaded up their helicopters and quit the country.

My skin crawled as I watched the Republican Party Convention deify the military and glorify such a foolish war — again with a country that posed absolutely no threat to us. I'm reminded of Eisenhower's warning about the military/industrial complex. "Ike" saw it coming.

I almost get the feeling that the GOP and McCain are looking for ways to keep the Armed Forces busy. It's sort of a way of life, isn't it? That would certainly help explain what happened after Sept. 11.

Do we need to spend more billions on a war that was a mistake from the beginning? Do we really want a regimental society dedicated to war as a way of life? Is there some deep need for us to periodically sacrifice our young men and women?

Please think on these things before you cast your vote in November.

Gerald G. Garland

Ashland