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Selective memory on Ford's legacy

January 01, 2007

Re "He led by listening," Dec. 28

I was an undergraduate in college when President Nixon presided over the expansion of the Vietnam War. The hope when he resigned was that President Ford would uphold the rule of law and support the investigation of Nixon. Instead, Republican to the end, he pardoned Nixon in return for his brief stint as president. I imagine I am not the only one unsurprised by your front-page photo. The same two thugs who directed Ford -- Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney -- now direct an even lighter-weight president as he pursues yet another Republican war. Is our respect for the departed so great that we can completely suspend our comprehension that nothing has changed?

JOHN CLARK

Playa del Rey

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Re "Praise for 'a legacy of honor,' " Dec. 28

After Ford's passing, President Bush said, "Gerald Ford came along when we needed him most." Doesn't Bush realize that what the United States needs most today is a leader who does not lie to his country, send thousands of troops to win an impossible war and isolate the country from the rest of the world? Future historians will have different words for the Bush administration.

PARKER R. GAIMS

Reseda

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Ford was the first president to take action that eventually led to President Reagan's decision to apologize to, and give compensation to, all Japanese Americans who went to the internment camps during World War II. Ford rescinded Executive Order 9066, which was enacted by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and sent Japanese Americans on the West Coast to relocation camps during World War II.

Ford also pardoned Iva Toguri, who was the alleged "Tokyo Rose." Toguri was a Japanese American who lived in Japan during World War II and allegedly was forced by the Japanese military to be an English-language propaganda radio announcer. It is easy to remember Ford for what so many people criticized him for. However, it is very important to remember his achievements.

KENT HORI

Gardena

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