Free speech

Dear Editor:Because I predict Ms. Rivero's inflammatory letter will inspire multiple responses, I'll be unusually brief. ("Words Have Consequences," 1/13/11) For every example of violent right-wing rhetoric, I can give three examples of violent left-wing rhetoric, including a feature film depicting the assassination of President Bush. Do we really want to play this childish, tit-for-tat game? I guarantee there will be no winners. Besides, there is zero evidence to back Ms. Rivero's outrageous allegations. So let's all take a deep breath, stop these lame attempts by the left to stomp all over the First Amendment rights of conservative Americans, pray for Rep. Gabrielle Gifford's full recovery, and focus on a flawed mental health system that allowed this lunatic to slip through its cracks. -- Alaina Niemann, Downey

Dear Editor: I saw it coming, yet I didn't say anything. I called for calm, but only after beating the other parties' beliefs like a child's pinata. There is much hypocrisy on both sides of the political spectrum. I, like most readers, are politically in the middle. We are saddened at the political discourse, and the loss of civility in society. I spent over 20 years in public service before being forced to retire from injuries I received in the line of duty. I understand pain and frustration. Much to my 7-year-old pain, I listen to both sides equally on television and on talk radio. Sadly, I find it funny how I hear the hate from both the left and the right slanted media outlets. If you don't agree with us you're evil,, well if you don't agree with us you're a racist. Well that is just "psycho talk." I am beginning to believe that the truly partisan apparently only hear the opposing sides tolerance. Thank God my son usually tells me to turn it to kids programming after only a few minutes. If you doubt me listen to Chris Matthews, Thomm Hartman, Ed Schultz, Mark Thompson and let's not forget Mike Malloy on the left. Then listen to Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Andrew Wilkow and Glen Beck. Then you will fully come to understand why there is road rage and a general coarsening in our society. So before you take out that pinata stick to bash those you don't agree with politically, take a second and think of us in the middle who think that the zealots on either side are equally to blame. Then please look in the mirror at yourself. -- Lawrence Luther, Downey

Dear Editor: I take great umbrage with Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky's opinion to cool the rhetoric. ("A Time to Cool the Rhetoric," 1/13/11) I find it deplorable that he would use the tragic event in Tucson to try and make a point about being more civil in our nation's political discourse. I, for one, do not believe that we need to make changes based upon the actions of one deranged individual. If we as a nation need to worry that any action we take might set off or push over the edge any mentally unstable individual, and that this should be the new standard for political discourse, you are very mistaken. I see this new call for civility as nothing more than censorship, and not censorship of all political speech, only the ones that you disagree with . For the standards of many liberals they cannot be uncivil by definition because they are correct in what they say. Only those that disagree with you are uncivil. Our country was built upon lively debate, the debates of old played out on the front pages with far more incendiary language than we use today. Mr. Yaroslavsky and other leaders are trying to capitalize on a tragic and emotional tragedy. He is trying to implicate that the anger that drove many citizens to the polls last November is the reason for this tragedy. How very one-sided and politically motivated his comments were. Yaroslavsky and the president lecture us on being civil, when what they really want is for those that disagree with them to be quiet. What Yaroslavsky and the president are doing is taking a tragic event and turning it into a political opportunity, a pep rally. The person to blame is the deranged gunman, and to insinuate otherwise is just political rhetoric. -- Edwin Huber, Downey

********** Published: January 13, 2011 - Volume 9 - Issue 39