Letters to the Editor 

Ford Versus Corker

I have seen Ford and Corker ads for the Tennessee Senate race. Ford values religion, as do most Tennesseeans, but Corker's labeling of Ford as a liberal misrepresents him. Ford is not endorsing religious issues.

I oppose religion in politics because of the tendency of some to use religious issues to win elections or to use the system to control people. Divisiveness and incivility are due to efforts to impose personal beliefs by majority vote, ignoring the rights of minorities.

Harold Ford Jr. is truly of the new generation who will fight for our common good. Our nation and our world need the new priorities that Ford envisions.

Anne W. Shafer


You can tell some politicians from honest folks because they are always licking their fingers and holding them in the air to see which way the wind is blowing before they commit to any decision. They neither lead nor follow until the poll numbers come out. Harold Ford Jr. is one of them.

I had every intention of casting a vote for Ford until his reprehensible vote in Congress that produced one of the most sinister pieces of legislation ever drafted by this government -- the detainee trial and detention bill. It legalizes torture, does away with habeas corpus, allows for indefinite detention without charges being filed, the assignment of military lawyers with no appeals for a citizen advocate, and provides cover for agents (and administration officials) accused of inhuman interrogation methods.

I can understand Republicans voting for this. All they want to do is protect their majority seats and paint Democrats as weak-kneed, terrorist-supporting traitors. But Democrats who voted for this have sold American values down the river in order to get a seat at the table.

Joe M. Spitzer


One Bob Corker ad features citizens from Chattanooga singing his praises. Ironically, the Chattanooga Police Department International Brotherhood of Police Officers (IBPO) Local 673 doesn't share that view. They voted to support Ford. Maybe Corker needs to focus more on himself rather than trying to paint the conservative-leaning Ford as a radical liberal. 

If you want more of the same in Congress -- no oversight, tax breaks for the rich, continued support for a failed war in Iraq, privatization of anything possible, corporate handouts, under-funding for education, and the continued push of cultural wedge issues -- maybe Corker is your man. For the rest of us, whether liberal or conservative, Ford is the obvious choice.

Zack Lawrence


A Corker loss will have grave implications for America, especially if Republicans lose the majority in the House or Senate. Do you want to see Nancy Pelosi as House speaker? Do you want to see the likes of Charles Rangel, John Dingell, Barney Frank, and John Murtha as committee chairs? A Democrat majority would have power to launch investigation after investigation, with more bickering than problem solving.  

Which party has better plans for the challenges facing our nation? Corker supports low taxes, securing our borders, immigration reform, and making defense and intelligence funding a priority. He should have your support.

Cathy Wright


American Apparel

I would like to direct Meghann McAllister-O'Day's attention (Letters, October 5th issue) to an in-depth article about American Apparel at KnowMore.org. In no way is Dov Charney exonerated, but there is a clearer understanding of the sexual-harrassment issues (three of the four cases have been dismissed) and union issues (American Apparel has taken a neutral policy toward employee unionization).

In addition, McAllister-O'Day criticizes American Apparel's ads, saying that they are "just a repeat of the same tired images of women we see constantly." I ask, Where? American Apparel's models are mostly employees. They don't wear makeup; they're not airbrushed; they do not come from an agency; they are not on television or in magazines like Elle or Vogue, and they certainly are not the malnourished socialites in US Weekly.

Whatever its faults, American Apparel still makes high-quality garments in the U.S.A., holds itself to higher-than-union standards, and does not subscribe to the industry norms in its advertising. Additionally, the Memphis retail location at 530 S. Main is giving a much-needed boost to a vital and historic neighborhood.

Cort Percer, American Apparel



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