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KOK Edit: your favorite copyeditor since 1984(SM) KOK Edit: your favorite copyeditor since 1984(SM) Katharine O'Moore Klopf
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Monday, April 11, 2005

Letter from the President

To my amazement, George took the time—or at least an assistant of his took the time—to send a form letter in reply to my son's "please stop the war" letter about :

Dear Neil:

Thank you for sharing your views and suggestions. I always enjoy hearing from young Americans.

As you continue your studies, I hope you will strive to learn something new every day. You can read more about issues that interest you, current events, and the history of our country by visiting your library or by logging onto the White House websites, www.whitehousekids.gov and http://www.whitehouse.gov/. I also encourage you to set high goals, study hard, and help others in need. Kindness to others and dedication to your schoolwork can strengthen your community and our Nation.

Mrs. Bush and I send our best wishes. May God bless you, and may God continue to bless America.

Sincerely,
George W. Bush


I'll be sitting my 10-year-old down for a lesson in how to detect hypocrisy. Then he can hone his hand–eye coordination by throwing darts at the photo of George and Laura that came with the letter.

12 comments:

jamie d said...

...grow up!

qwerty said...

well.....in my country if you send a letter to the president arguing against his policies, babe you are in trouble. So dont complain that much, at least u got a response, not a police car at your door.
Juan

Katharine said...

Yes, qwerty, I am grateful for the right to speak out, but that doesn't mean that I or my family members should just accept whatever the president wants to do. It's our duty as citizens to speak out against wrongs. It's when everyone stops speaking out that Americans will lose the right to do so.

Wally said...

In other words:   "Dear __(insert name of child here)__,      (Insert carefully crafted, but meaningless generic words here).     Sincerely,    Dubyah

erinberry said...

Qwerty, having the right to speak out means nothing if people condemn you for exercising that right. Since this administration has come into power, too many are denounced as "unpatriotic" or "un-American" for voicing dissent. We must hold our leaders accountable, and we do so because we want what's best for this country.

Katharine said...

Hey, Wally! (Folks, that's my "little" brother, one of my favorite people!) Thanks for stopping by, dude.

Dr. Fallon said...

When you run out of darts, Mom, let me know. I'll lend you some of mine.

Katharine said...

Ha! You have plenty of great darts at In the Dark. Keep on throwing.

Kenneth Rufo said...

I never understand this sort of response - that we should be happy with the level of involvement we have now, because after all, we can send a letter. Well whoopdie doo. We can vote, too, not that the voting necessarily corresponds to the adoption of policies or the promulgation of ideologies with which we agree. Republics, democracies, whatever - are defined at least theoretically by the possibility that average joe citizen can make a difference by participating in the system of government. But these days, that sort of participation is increasingly predetermined, its outcome already known and guaranteed. That's not democracy in the sense of a demos. It's rule "for" the people, but hardly "by" the people.

Besides, in this case, the most substantive participation is the complaint - and teaching her son to throw darts and refuse to accept hypocrisy as if such acceptance is required due to the way it is. I can't think of anything more grown up for the son, or the mother.

Katharine said...

Thanks for that, Kenneth.

The two behaviors in people that I find absolutely unacceptable are lying (aka hypocrisy) in any form and not standing up for oneself (or one's community, large or small). It just makes me crazy. But if I should ever "grow up" enough to just accept hypocrisy, please send an emergency team of deprogrammers to my rescue.

Anonymous said...

Good for you Katherine and Neil! If you run out of darts let me know; I am sure that I have rotten eggs or tomatoes in my fridge.
To Jamie and Qwerty:
It is fairly absurd for us to be fighting in Iraq to help them create a democracy and freedom of speech when we have so little tolerance for it here. Yes, there are worse places to live but that doesn't mean we should be happy to settle for better than worse. We need to work to preserve our rights here too. We must try to be our best. Sadly, we have lost cedibility with so many of our neighbors because of our "do as I say not do as I do" attitude.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, that last one was from me. I don't want anyone to mistake me. I will not be afraid to stand up and speak my mind.
Sarajane Ilamathi

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