Regarding Dante Chinni's June 29 column "Fahrenheit fuss: What exactly was everyone expecting?": When leaders give solemn assurances that we must fight a war and people must die based on their facts, those facts had better be right. If leaders are wrong, then a filmmaker has the right, and a moral responsibility, to point it out. The filmmaker isn't asking anyone to die for his statements, facts, or point of view.
No one seriously believes that Michael Moore should be put in charge of foreign policy. But most voters believe that he has the right to examine it, to question the facts, and give the public information that bears on the actions and decisions of those who are in charge. If Moore is wrong, the appropriate response is to produce the evidence and the research to prove it.
If "freedom" has any meaning in a country that holds itself up to the world as a model for democracy, the concept, at a minimum, must include the freedom to state facts and a point of view even when - especially when - they make the president look bad.
I read so much about people judging and criticizing everything President Bush did on 9/11, even remaining in his chair looking uncertain after he was told about the attacks. It is so easy to judge after any kind of incident. You can say so much because then you already know what happened and who did what and what went wrong. It looks as if all these people are trying so hard to put down their own president; it is very sad and strange.
We are very lucky to have a president like Bush. I wish you would have some respect for and appreciation of your own president.
Woodland Hills, Calif.
Regarding your June 25 article "George W. and me": I sympathize with David Sterritt's efforts to fit "Fahrenheit 9/11" into the "documentary" form. While Moore's film can be said to document certain events, it is truly an excellent example of the cinematic essay. I hope the publicity surrounding Moore's film will finally bring to light the necessity and legitimacy of this third cinematic form.
Regarding your June 28 editorial "If Cheney had dropped the bait:" Your comments about Cheney's inappropriate outburst during his visit to the Senate last week were well done.
I am very concerned about the deepening divide in our country. Cheney's lowering of the bar of civil discourse is dismaying.
Rose F. Holt
Your editorial misses the point about Mr. Cheney's recent statement to Sen. Patrick Leahy. As someone who expects politicians to conduct themselves with dignity, I would say it is about time that the left was challenged for its defamatory, incessant, and indecorous campaign to demonize Cheney and Halliburton.
Despite your hand-wringing over the statement, I suspect Americans view Cheney's comment as rare but longoverdue.
Cheney swore at Sen. Leahy after the senator challenged the vice-president on the excessive no-bid contracts that the Bush-Cheney administration has given to Halliburton Corp, regardless of its history of cheating and overcharging our government. Leahy's questions represent the concern of all of us taxpayers, since we're the ones who pay for those contracts. Cheney's blowoff is disrespects all of us.
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