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Defending Cheney Is Indefensible

September 12, 2004

I am shocked by your Sept. 9 editorial, "In Defense of Dick Cheney." It is absurd and insulting to the intelligence of your readership to compare Vice President Dick Cheney's statement to those made by John F. Kerry and John Edwards. Every candidate since time immemorial has promised to do a better job, be it on health, jobs, defense or any other issue. Why else would a candidate run if he did not feel and say that he could do better? There's no implied threat in that, and no thinking person sees it as a threat.

Cheney's statement was quite different. It represents an outright threat. Like saying, "Vote for us or you can get killed." It was scare tactics of the worst kind. We can only hope that most voters will see through it. And I am surprised that The Times, with whose editorials I usually concur, would try to defend it.

Frank Reinhard

La Jolla

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The Times (Sept. 8) quoted Cheney as saying, "If we make the wrong choice, then the danger is we'll get hit again and we'll be hit in a way that'll be devastating from the standpoint of the United States.... "

His spokeswoman, Anne Womack, is quoted as explaining that "what the vice president was saying is 'Whoever is elected, we face the prospect of a terrible attack.' But the issue at hand is whether you have the right policy in place." Often there is something lost in translation. What language is it that Bush and Cheney speak that so often requires translation?

C. Alton Robertson

Redlands

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Cheney speaks from experience about getting hit again by terrorists if the wrong choice is made. We all remember under whose watch it was when the terrorists did hit after warnings were ignored.

Sheila Hoff

Rancho Palos Verdes

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I guess since Cheney was able to obtain five deferments, he understands how to get us out of the sights of the terrorists and has passed that information on to the current Cabinet.

Ritas Smith

Torrance

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