Blame Nader?

"Ben Affleck: 'I hope Nader can still sleep'" by Amy Reiter; "I voted for Nader" by King Kaufman

By Letters to the Editor

Published November 9, 2000 8:28PM (EST)

Read Amy Reiter's story

Read King Kaufman's story

I hope all you Naderites are satisfied now. While I admired Ralph Nader's work in the past, now I only have contempt for him for handing over the presidency to George W. Bush. I hope Nader never gets funding to run in 2004 or ever again after this irresponsible, unthinking, self-serving campaign which has set our country back more than he could ever imagine. I hope everyone in this country understands how his votes are probably the main reason that Florida did not go for Gore. I also think Phil Donahue should have his head examined and my heart goes out to Marlo Thomas, who has to live with him now after his unqualified support for Nader. What could he have been thinking?

-- Stephanie Richmond

I voted my conscience. In my home state of Georgia, my Nader vote did not cost Al Gore the election. However, in looking at the returns in the pivotal state of Florida, the Nader votes, if indeed they would have been Gore votes, made the difference.

Damn it, I don't want a recount in Florida, I want a re-vote.

-- Elicia Fritsch

Oh my. Had I any idea the movie stars thought it was a bad idea I would NEVER have voted for Nader. They're right -- maybe Gore would have an easy win if it weren't for this pesky democracy that gives people a choice.

Simply: Nader didn't steal my vote, he earned it, just as Gore could have. I think a Bush presidency would be better for progressive causes because it will galvanize opposition. Do you think a Republican would be allowed the miserable environmental/labor/civil liberties record Clinton/Gore tallied?

-- Mark Fradl

Though Nader support was polling around five percent up until the election, when Greens saw how badly Gore was doing, half of them voted for Gore, giving him a win in the popular vote and sacrificing their hopes of winning matching funding. Greens brought in voters who would have stayed away from the election otherwise. They voted heavily for Democratic candidates in the House and Senate.

Yet I only see Democrats complaining about Greens who voted their conscience. The Democrats owe all Greens their thanks. They could not have done as well without us.

-- Will Shetterly

So after 16 years King Kaufman is still holding enough of a grudge against Tipper for the PMRC and a ratings system that has staved off actual censorship of records to want to see Bush in the White House?

Putting all his other criticisms of the Clinton/Gore administration aside, does Kaufman really think Bush will be a better defender of the First Amendment? The last time we had a Bush in the White House, we were looking down the barrel of a school prayer movement and a flag-burning amendment. Not to mention the restrictions placed on the press during the Gulf War.

This is a perfect example of the Nader movement's sacrifice of the workably adequate in the name of the unreachably perfect.

-- James Denning

You should fire King Kaufman not because he voted for Nader, but for his lame reason for not voting for Gore.

First of all, the stickers that are voluntarily placed on CDs by record labels are in no way censorship. They don't change the lyrics, they don't change the liner notes, they don't change the music ... and they certainly don't affect record sales.

I only wish that parents in our society paid more attention to these stickers. I was at the store the other day and the woman in front of me was buying a copy of Eminem's CD for her nine-year-old son. Hopefully he will call her some of the words he learns from that CD and she'll pay more attention next time.

-- Kate Daley

Thank you, King Kaufman!

You eloquently summed up the position I've held for years. I've been deeply disappointed in Gore and Lieberman's willingness to censor any speech or art that doesn't meet their p.c. litmus test.

Moreover, my heart breaks for Nader, as this election has forced him to realize that so many of his friends were not true friends at all. I understand his passion and defiance -- it's not hubris, it's the frustration of a man who is tired of explaining that when you've drawn a line in the sand, you can't go back, no matter the consequences. And yes, I agree with Nader that if the Democratic party and Gore had paid attention in the first place, Nader's candidacy would have been no threat at all.

I will continue to vote for Nader and any other candidate whose views and platforms most closely match my own, regardless of party affiliation. Anyone who does differently is violating the democratic process, which should be about voting for what you believe in, period.

-- Laurissa James

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