Iowans with ties to Alabama seek votes for Sen. Obama

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Dear editor,

Although we moved to Iowa from Alabama several years ago, we follow the state news online, and thought that the upcoming primary was a chance to reach out to our former neighbors and colleagues.

The Iowa caucuses generated a lot of light and a bit of heat this year. Iowans take the responsibility that accompanies &8220;being first in the nation&8221; very seriously, and many Iowans saw every candidate, heard every stump speech, shook every hand that walked by. This gives one a tremendous opportunity to evaluate potential presidents on their wisdom, ability to connect, consistency, poise under pressure, and character.

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Little wonder then, that after careful consideration, Iowans were drawn to

Sen. Barack Obama.

A man of integrity and energy, Obama has a lifetime of working for poor and marginalized Americans as evidence that he will get something done to heal our country. And while some may long for the 1990s, we need a President who looks to restore this country by moving us into the world as it is rather than the world as it was.

We need a candidate who is willing to own mistakes, reach across barriers, and who will value moral clarity over political expediency.

We need, most desperately, a candidate who has the moral will, judgment, instinct and courage to say and do what is right from the beginning &8212;not after the handlers approve it.

Barack Obama will put people ahead of politics and self interests.

We believe he is the bridge needed to heal our divisions across political parties, class and racial differences, and borders, to help America be what it can be. We hope he will have your vote on Feb.


Deb Liddell & John Westefeld

Iowa City, Iowa

Reader responds to article about teenagers and drinking

Dear editor,

Let me respond to your article published on Jan. 18 “MADD Alabama speaks to area teens”.

One student said after seeing the presentation, she felt more teens should be against drunk driving and have support for MADD.

Even more students might support MADD if MADD would give up its bigotry.

Like the Nazis (“Juden Verboten”)and the KKK (“White Only”) MADD supports malicious discrimination against innocent people (“No Minors Allowed”).

On April 9, 2005, some Winter Springs High School students in Florida used a cell phone to report their limo driver. They told her to pull over and park, and when she did, they took the key. At age 49, she got arrested her third time for drunk driving. Naturally, she’s free to buy all the booze she wants, while they could have been jailed for one can of beer, because people under 21 are so irresponsible compared with people 21 and older. Just look at all the “teenagers killed in drunk driving crashes.”

Consider the double fatal in Burton, Ohio on

March 2, 2006. Andrew Hopkins and Grace Chamberlain were both 18.

The guy who killed them was 47 and drunk (0.26% BAC). So they were, if fact, “teenagers killed in a drunk driving crash.” Statistics don’t lie.

The guy was driving drunk, leading police on a high-speed chase, driving on a suspended license, and driving left of center, but at least he wasn’t drinking under age.

The guy crashed head-on into a car with three Hiram College students, killing two and critically injuring one, but at least he didn’t buy beer for them. To MADD, that’s the important thing.

While the guy was tallying up his 11 prior DWI convictions, MADD was pushing sting operations at liquor stores, counterfeit-resistant IDs, keg registration laws and tougher penalties on people under 21 caught drinking responsibly.

I have a dream that my two children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the date of their birth, but by the content of their character.

Tom Alciere

Hudson, N.H.