Again, this election cycle, I am sick and tired of the negative ads from people running for political office. All are trying to sway our vote by trying to convince us what a scoundrel their opponent is. All I want to know from a politician is what they will be doing for my country, my state, my city and me. If you, as a politician, cannot tell us what you intend to do for us and commit to it so that we may hold you accountable as your employer, you should not hold a political office. If the negative things you say about your opponent outweigh the positives you can say about yourself, please take your name off the ballot.
BILL WINTERS, Brooklyn Park
A few matters warrant criticism, starting with the nominee
Christine Blasey Ford's allegations against U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh caused him to unravel completely. When push came to shove, he turned emotional and very nasty. Shouldn't the American people expect grace under pressure from their Supreme Court justices? He couldn't hold it together under stress. That is not what we need in a Supreme Court justice.
When he questioned Sen. Amy Klobuchar about her drinking, there was a silent though palpable and stunned response in the chambers and in homes across America. His attitude of entitlement — "How dare you question my behavior," and his diatribe against the Democrats, the Clintons, etc., was more revealing of his true nature than anything printed in his yearbook or in his calendar. Last Thursday, we saw the real Brett Kavanaugh in living color; we heard him loud and clear.
When playground bullies are confronted, they take their ball and go home. Do us all a favor, Brett; take your name out of the running. Take your ball and go home.
EILEEN BIERNAT, New Brighton
• • •
I'm not sure why the Sept. 30 edition contained the large article "Kavanaugh supporters include many women" (with accompanying photo) without also providing an article on the huge numbers of men supporting Ford (and then also providing an accompanying photo of men in support of her). Could it be because anything involving a sexual assault is still seen as a women's-only issue and thus surprise shown that any females at all would support Kavanaugh?
Sexual assault is not just a women's issue and when there is a victim of sexual assault, men can be plenty supportive and believing of her or his story. There are untold numbers of men supporting Ford. I could name many, beginning with my husband, son, sons-in-law, male friends, and husbands of female friends. It would be wonderful to now see an article and accompanying photo depicting the incredible number of men supporting not only Ford but women in general on issues of sexual violence and anything at all that addresses inequalities between the genders.
The men I know care about women and the treatment of women. And there are plenty of men out there who support Ford after hearing her testimony.
MARGARET SELTZ, Afton
• • •
Congress supplies us with irony. Some senators favor highly permissive personal behavior until a member of the opposing party comes before their committee. Then they are ready and eager to cast the first stone. The politicization of the nation's judiciary is a major mistake. Presidential appointees such as Merrick Garland deserve hearings and able judges should not be "Borked."
Our country needs capable judges, but also evenhanded, honorable senators, and exemplary presidents. The cheap partisan politics should go.
FRED ZIMMERMAN, Minnetonka
Same senator, same hearing — and two very different reviews
Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar participated in her party's willful smear of Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh. She placed her political goals above legal ethics and fairness. She and her party denied Kavanaugh the presumption of innocence, which is fundamental to our judicial system. As an attorney and former prosecutor, this behavior is especially egregious. She is complicit in withholding Ford's letter, which accused Kavanaugh of sexual assault, until the last minute for the purpose of defeating his confirmation. Klobuchar wants you to think she is on the high road, but the moral, ethical road would have been to inform the Judiciary Committee about Ford's letter when it was received.
The fair thing to do would have been to have the FBI investigate the charges confidentially (as is the normal process) to determine their merit. The FBI would have found what we now know; the charges are uncorroborated or denied by the individuals allegedly present at the party where the assault allegedly took place. They would have found Ford's best friend has no recall of ever meeting Kavanaugh. Based on findings of this nature, as Hennepin County attorney, Klobuchar would have found no basis to prosecute. But corrupted by her political goals, now-Sen. Klobuchar ignored the ethical thing to do. She and her party prosecuted in the court of public opinion and smeared a man known for moral decency for his entire adult life. Her unethical behavior makes her unfit to serve as a U.S. senator.
JOHN G. BENDT, Long Lake
• • •
Having watched the most recent two days of hearings and debate on the Supreme Court nomination of Judge Kavanaugh, I write to express my admiration and appreciation for Sen. Amy Klobuchar. In marked contrast to certain other participants, including the nominee, Klobuchar at all times displayed great poise, patience and common sense. It is apparent to me that she very ably serves her state and our country, and I hope that Minnesotans are proud of her.
KEVIN MURPHY, Salt Lake City, Utah
Sentence of probation in fatal crash called for more information
A young woman driving 30 miles per hour over the speed limit hits another car, killing two and severely injuring the other passenger. She pleaded guilty and her penalty — 10 years' probation with no jail time ("Driver pleads guilty in 2 students' deaths," Sept. 30). The names of the woman and her victims were provided; the names of the judge and prosecuting attorneys were not. Why are their names not provided? Trivial crimes result in jail time, and taking two lives does not. Every week we read of sentences that are far too light for the crimes involved. In Minnesota, we elect judges. Don't you think you owe the public the judge's name so that local residents can take this kind of ruling into account when casting their vote? And if this is a plea bargain, I question whether it would have been offered if she weren't white.
JOEL STEGNER, Edina
Disappointed in the makeover we got for $50 million
I read in Monday's paper that Afton's downtown renovation is nearing completion, with a new, pedestrian-friendly downtown; cost: $22 million. My husband and I visited downtown Minneapolis last week to have dinner and see a show at the Dakota. We walked up Nicollet Mall and commented, again, that the lengthy mall renovation at $50 million really changed so very little. I am so disappointed, mostly that we had a chance for a true promenade, instead buses are still on this street. Sad.
CHRISTINE CHAMBERS, Shoreview
Dignified and professional, he's a guy in the Gehrig mold
Joe Mauer is a special man as well as an outstanding baseball player ("A magical Mauer moment," Oct. 1). No tats. No body embellishments. He is upright, conscientious, committed to his profession. Aside from numbers of hits, runs other stats, he knows baseball. Few players study all aspects of their profession as thoroughly as Mauer. I am proud to be one of his biggest fans. I'm 91 and have been a baseball fan most of my life. In all that time, I have had two heroes: Lou Gehrig and Joe Mauer. Go Joe!
LOIS K. GIBSON, Minneapolis