ACCEPTING THE CHALLENGE
In the article "'Deanie Babies' Grow Up" [March 16] you mention Eddie Ableser as the first child of Generation Dean to run for office. He is not the only one. I am another active member of GenDean who is running for the US House of Representatives, Congressional District 5. Eddie and I both heard and accepted Dean's challenge to take our country back.
LAUGHING AT MARRIAGE
I want to thank Richard Kim for such a brilliant, funny and dead-on article about marriage ["The Descent of Marriage?" Feb. 27]. Gay or straight...the fact that we're even arguing about who gets access to an institution that is as bankrupt as GW's budget is beyond logic! I was literally laughing out loud (something we can't do too often in these sorry times) in several spots and found myself scouring the Nation website for anything and everything written by this smart, articulate, well-thought-out man! Really, it made my week!
I am all for gay marriage, I cannot understand why anyone would think it would undermine their own marriage any more than they can undermine it themselves.
I have to laugh, though, at all the people that have been living together saying "if only we could get married," secretly glad they don't have to make the commitment that straight men must deal with, and now all of a sudden here it is--the possibility of marriage. Now what?
REMEMBERING MARSHALL FRADY
I too miss Marshall Frady. I was in the midst of reading his Martin Luther King Jr. biography when I got the news of his death. As a prisoner of conscience who was just this past January 26 convicted for civil disobedience in the very same courtroom where King was convicted for civil disobedience, I am vividly aware of the need we have for good journalism. Without coverage of our efforts for peace and justice, the sacrifice we make leaving our friends and loved ones would be wasted. Some people have called me a voice for the voiceless, since I am willing to serve federal prison time to draw attention to our invasive US foreign policy, but I say it is honest journalists who truly are the voice of the voiceless, and Marshall Frady had one of the truest, clearest voices around. I shall miss him, and I have hope that the work he was doing on Castro will be published as it stands. I do not think I am alone. Thank you.
Soon to be prisoner of conscience in Dublin, California,
LEISA FAULKNER BARNES
I believe that Ralph Nader is doing the only respectable thing he can do, which is give the American people a voice against both Democrats and Republicans [Robert Scheer, "Nader Is Crashing the Party Yet Again," Feb. 25]. If the Democrats need more votes, then they should adjust their platform and their strategy to compensate. If the Democrats cannot pull the votes they need with the resources they have available, then their candidate should not be President.
If Nader were not to run in this election, he would be doing an even greater disservice to America by taking away a much needed choice and voice for the nearly 1 in 20 voters who support Nader specifically. Fear should not be the driving force of an election; instead, it should be driven by support and belief in the candidates. I believe by voting for Nader a large number of people are able to accomplish this because the Nader supporters are passionate about removing both of the "evils" instead of the "lesser" of two.
I salute Robert Scheer for reinforcing the confidence many of us have in Europe that there are strong forces alive in the United States which belie the myth that the country can only produce gun-slinging cowboys bent on throwing their weight around in various parts of the world. You will remember the Spanish lawyer and judge, Baltasar Garzón, who campaigned strongly to arraign General Pinochet for crimes committed during his dictatorship in Chile. Garzón succeeded in obtaining Pinochet's arrest in London for over a year. In a recent article in the Madrid daily El País, Garzón questioned why we hardly ever read reports of how the countless Iraqi civilians (blind, deaf, legless) disabled as a result of the Anglo-American invasion are eking out a living, and the grief that must now accompany their lives and those of their families and friends. Perhaps I have missed any reference to this sad state of affairs in your publication, but I think more of this horrendous consequence of the "mistakes made" and "lies perpetrated" should be brought home to the American public, and indeed the world at large.