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Letters to the Editor for May 1

The important thing is to respectfully fly flag

I found Mr. Wayne Harvey's letter on the proper display of the United States flag interesting ('Improperly flying the flag is disrespectful,' The Times, April 17). I do have a 20-foot flagpole but am waiting for next month to raise my flag for Memorial Day and taking it down after Labor Day. I do not have a light.

There are about a dozen residences on my street that have the 20-foot poles with flags and none of them are lit. Others have their flags mounted on the exterior walls of their homes. One neighbor told me a long time ago he has the lights and he did use them, but the electric bill was over the top. He is displaying his flag, and he is a veteran.

Most, like me, are retired and some don't have the financial means to pay the excessive electric bill.

I feel it would be a good idea for Congress to alter the code so that public buildings, government buildings and schools would be required to adhere to the lighting of the flag, but average citizens would be exempt from the code so they would not have to bear the cost of the electricity. The important thing is that we do fly the flag - that is what counts.

What does irk me is folks who are unhappy with what is going on in the world and protest by wearing the flag as a piece of clothing, carrying it on a pole upside down or setting it on fire - you name it. This bothers me more than seeing a flag not being lit, as per the code.

There is a home in my town where the occupants have their flag mounted on the outside wall, but the flag is flying upside down. I haven't had the nerve to ask them why. I've seen flags used as window curtains, made into canvas lawn furniture, made into scarves (as when the first Mrs. Bush was seen wearing along with her pearl necklace).

I'm for displaying the flag the proper way, lit or unlit. The people we should be angry with are those choosing to show disrespect in the ways mentioned above.

JEAN ALMOND

Sherwood

Redshirts say 'thanks' for supporting troops

HH Redshirts, a non-political association of unpaid volunteers in the greater Beaverton area, wants to say 'thanks' to the many shoppers at Haggen Food and Pharmacy, whose generous donations at our information/donation table during the past four months have allowed us to send 260 goodie packs to local men and women serving in Afghanistan and Iraq, as expressions of appreciation and support from folks back home.

And a special thanks to Haggen Murrayhill manager, Mike Butterfield, and to Haggen Tualatin manager, Bolar Brown, and their staff, who provided off-the-chart support for our troop-support cause.

Concerning our troops, their gift to us is freedom - our gift to them is support.

Anyone desiring to show continued support for our local heroes serving in harm's way can do so by visiting the Redshirts' information/donation table on the first weekend of each month at Haggen Food and Pharmacy in Murrayhill and on the third weekend of each month at Haggen Food and Pharmacy in Tualatin. One hundred percent of your donation-contribution goes to pay for goodies-pack items and mailing costs - without any deduction for salaries or administrative charges.

Again, a huge thanks to the many unnamed and named supporters of our troops. I hope to see many of you readers at the Redshirts' information/donation table at Haggen Food and Pharmacy on the first and third weekends of each upcoming month.

DON MOELLER

HH Redshirts

Why can't Clinton close the deal?

'Why can't he close the deal?' That's the question Hillary Clinton is lobbing out there today.

Well, that's a question she should ask herself. She went into the race as the de-facto nominee. It was supposed to be a forgone conclusion she would be leading the Democratic ticket in November. She was supposed to have a cakewalk to the nomination.

Well, I ask: Why can't Hillary close the deal? And I wonder why commentators and reporters aren't asking that? The heavy favorite going into the campaign:

  • Has lost twice as many primaries and caucuses as Obama;

  • Trails in pledged delegates;
  • Trails in the popular vote;
  • Is watching a steadily decreasing margin in super delegates;
  • And despite winning the so-called 'big' states, has by and large not won in the big cities.

So I ask, who's not able to close the deal? Who's never been able to close the deal?

It seems to me Hillary (and Bill) have a mentality of entitlement. ('I should be the nominee because I'm a Clinton.') She also seems to be willing to go to any lengths, regardless of what happens to her party, to get what she wants.

Some people say that's 'being tough.' I believe it's more selfish than anything else. Hillary's main agenda is Hillary.

And she consistently has been dishonest. In the latest flap about Obama's comments in San Francisco, Hillary carefully orchestrated a bash campaign against him, charging him with being 'elitist' and not really caring for working-class people.

Why doesn't the media make more of a point of bringing the real Hillary out?

In 1995 Hillary made quite a statement about her feelings toward working-class people. I quote: 'Screw 'em,' she told her husband. 'You don't owe them a thing, Bill. They're doing nothing for you; you don't have to do anything for them.' (See www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/04/16/hillary-clinton-on-workin_n_97017.html for more detail.)

Seems a bit more worrisome a comment than the stuff Obama said. I wonder if she made those comments under a hail of sniper fire?

Finally, the press jumped on Obama in the most recent debate for whining and not standing up to the line of questions they threw at him. I wonder if I was watching the same debate? Sure he looked none too pleased about the way the questions were headed, but what I saw was a person who chose not to be baited. He didn't raise his voice, stomp his feet, break out in a sweat and start crying. He responded reasonably and chose the high ground from my point of view.

The bottom line is that Hillary is a self absorbed politician who has consistently misled people and twisted the statements of her opponents time again to her own advantage. I understand politics is a 'full contact sport' (interesting choice of words Mr. Clinton used there, no?), but I want a person of integrity in the White House - someone who offers hope instead of the acrimonious, finger-pointing party politics we've been subjected to for the past 16 years.

DREW ZAGORSKI

Beaverton