Ideology does not have to alienate us
Some of us awoke after the night of the election with fear, trepidation and hope for what lies ahead. Others of us awoke with depression over what might have been.
While this election has brought discord and division to some families and neighbors, I have reminded myself that Democrats and Republicans sit in the same room together, debate around the same conference tables together, laugh and joke in the hallways of Congress together. James Carville and Mary Matalin go to bed together.
It puts all this into perspective, reminding me that among our friends, and within our own families, ideas do not have to alienate us. We can still sit around the dinner table together, talk respectfully to each other, laugh together, love each other.
If ideology trumps friendships and family relationships, then democracy has been diminished.
For those among us who are disappointed with the outcome of this election, listen to or read again the eloquent words of John McCain on Tuesday night. Following his advice and example, I will support Barack Obama for a better America and the freedoms provided by our democracy.
Tom Lentz, Gulfport
With this election, we got our country back
I am a white, middle-aged, registered Republican. I supported John McCain's earlier campaigns. I'm even a Naval Academy grad, as is he. It broke my heart to see him cave in to the party line over the past nine months. That wasn't the guy I knew.
The best parts of the American tradition have been our creativity, work ethic and openness to others. We lost that in the past eight years. This time I voted for the candidate best able to help us deal with the 21st century. The sick feeling I've had since 2000 is gone. Tuesday we got our country back.
Rich Brown, Tampa
More divided than ever
I keep hearing and reading about how this election has united people. This is simply not true. People voted against George Bush's policies and not for Barack Obama's policies. Most people can't even tell me what Obama's policies are.
I know that you are a very liberal paper and this most likely will not be published, however, this country is more divided than ever. Keep in mind that 55-million people voted for John McCain and want no part of a socialistic and welfare society. I take much pride in the fact that I work for my money and I would never expect handouts from those who make more than me. Let's see if our new president can live up to his many promises.
Lynda Barrett, Largo
An unbending party
The other day on TV several political pundits were trying to answer the question: "What is the future of the Republican Party?" The flippant answer is that the party could go to Alaska with their VP candidate and go into hibernation with the bears now that winter is approaching.
A more serious answer is for them to give up their philosophy that they are always right and everyone else who does not agree with their policies is wrong. President Bush said it well on another occasion: Either you are with us or you are against us.
It is not as simple as that. Whether it is trickle- down economics or democracy in Iraq, or health care, or gay marriage or abortion issues, they just did not want to listen to an alternative point of view. They were always right and everyone else was wrong. They tried their best in name-calling all those who disagreed with them. The country rejected that type of behavior. Listening to some of their leaders, they still do not get it.
"Live and let live" is a noble principle for everyone, and the Republican Party lost sight of that.
Raghu Sarma, Odessa
Goodwill of the world has been restored Nov. 7, letter
Not a popularity contest
I laughed out loud when I read the letter raving how the world likes us again because Barack Obama won the election.
It strikes me as being the same as a teenage girl whose only goal in high school is to get people to like her, even bad people.
This is the real world, not a high school prom. The world has to respect us, not think we have an inexperienced leader, if we are to be safe. It is time for more sophisticated thought than popularity contests.
Barbara Stewart, Clearwater
A nation remade
Dear World: Behold a country that is able to reinvent itself by the will of its people. A country that had given us fear and anger and hate and suffering, has now given us a thinker. A statesman. A peacemaker. And the promise of a new day.
Now, let's get to work.
Yes, we did!
Jack Coletti, St. Petersburg
Bush's great service
The legacy of President George W. Bush is now writ large on the stone of history. More than any other person, with the possible exception of Barack Obama himself, George Bush will be remembered as the person most responsible for the election of President-elect Obama.
Congratulations, President Bush, and thank you.
Samuel E. Englehart, Clearwater
Wrongs need to be righted
Barack Obama's election as our next president is more than a change in the White House. It is a change of America as we have known it. We will have to roll up our sleeves and work hard to put our nation back on track.
Personally, I believe that is better than what George Bush wanted: Don't worry, just go to the mall.
However, the injustices of the Bush administration should not go unpunished. I hope and pray that Obama will appoint Hillary Clinton as attorney general. This way we can truly right some constitutional wrongs that this administration has put us through.
Wendy Covin, Hernando
Tampa Bay Breast Cancer 3-Day
Thanks for the support
Thank you to the generous people of the St. Petersburg area. Your support of the three-day 60-mile walk last weekend was humbling. Whenever we felt tired, you were there, encouraging us to go on. Your offers of water, candy, ice, wash cloths, and (the best!) frozen grapes was unbelievable.
Thank you for the decorated and helpful fire stations, the police who held traffic so we didn't have to stop. And thank you to the citizens who volunteered and to those of you who beeped as you went by or waved.
I would have told you during the walk how much your support meant, but I couldn't speak without crying.
What a great community. Please feel proud of your invaluable contribution.
Cathy Campbell, Palm Coast