Tuesday, October 15, 2002

Readers have terminal case of reactions

Be careful when you open your e-mail. Crossfire over war with Iraq can blast through the Internet.

"Coward!" - A.U. Roth, Bethel

"You're courageous." - Bea Miller, West Chester.

Most feedback divided itself into those two camps when hundreds of readers - 226 to be exact - responded to my column questioning the president's decision to deliver a saber-rattling speech last week at Union Terminal.

My dad and uncles departed from the terminal with tens of thousands of other GIs to fight in World War II. Soldiers also left from there to do battle in Korea and Vietnam. The building has heard enough talk of war.

"Maybe you would rather hide under your desk with your head between your knees. As for me, give me a gun and point me toward Saddam." - Jay Hall, Florence.

"You have tarnished the memory of many a good soldier who never returned through Union Terminal to enjoy the rest of their lives and their freedoms." - Rich Hetzel, Oakley.

Welda J. Hartzler Ogle's dad helped build the terminal and worked there.

"The use of this beacon for a call to war denies the message for peace," Welda wrote from Walnut Hills.

"We, the people, are very wary of this contrived `war' against Iraq." - Sue K. Lumb, Hyde Park.

"Thanks for such a heartfelt statement in the face of so much rhetoric." - Randy Chakerian, Corvallis, Ore.

History lesson

Several readers echoed David B. Knable of Montgomery: "Think about if the United States and Great Britain had been militarily strong and focused and had taken action against Hitler and his cronies...before they became powerhouses."

Equating Iraq with Nazi Germany has merit. So does this equation from Kathy Nalepas of Anderson Township:

"If we begin a war with Iraq, not only will we be creating another Vietnam. We will be helping al-Qaida recruitment throughout the entire world."

Don't boo; sue

Long-suffering Bengals' fans want their day in court.

By a count of 197 to 3 - a hair worse than Sunday's loss to the Steelers - readers liked the idea, first floated in this space, of filing a class-action suit against Mike Brown's losers.

We, the people, built them a $451 million stadium. We kept our part of the bargain. The Bengals didn't. Mike Brown said Paul Brown Stadium would be home to a winner.

"Mike Brown is a bum and deserves to be sued." - Kurt Windisch, North College Hill.

"Where else is there leverage against the colossal smugness and ego of the Brown family?" - Rick McKinniss, Kensington, Ct.

"Include in the lawsuit (Tom) Neyer, (Bob) Bedinghaus, etc." - Jeanne and Ed Chartier, Symmes Township.

"Imagine if the awful Bengal management has to fork over 451 mill, hopefully they will have to sell the team!" - Philip Rumble, Sydney, Australia.

"No wonder they can't get decent grass to grow in that stadium. It sits on poisoned soil." - Barbara Phelps, Villa Hills.

"If your team endures losing seasons for 10 years in a row, then neither you, Mr. Owner, nor your siblings can run the team." - Paul Tran, Singapore.

From downtown, Carroll Roberts e-mailed his grounds for suing: "This team's performance has directly affected (negative effect) my marriage, quality time with my children, attitude toward football, yard work, Monday productively in my profession, my wallet and my liver."

On the Bengals' behalf, Jim Stewart wrote:

"As fans, losing or not, we should stand by our chosen teams and show support."

Easy for him to say. He lives in Eugene, Ore.

E-mail cradel@enquirer.com.

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