READERS WRITE

Columnist adept at twisting Obama’s words

Mona Charen is deviously clever at spinning anything President Barack Obama says to imply he meant something else. She reported the president’s statement that the lack of affordable child care requires many mothers to leave the workplace, which puts them behind as a wage earner for the rest of their lives “Choices we don’t want women to have to make,” (Opinion, Nov. 7). In my experience, that rings as a true statement. Ms. Charen, however, ridiculed his remarks to suggest that he would favor mandating employers to pay women returning to work the same pay and promotions they might have earned had they remained in the workplace. He neither implied nor said any such thing. Apparently, the only thing conservatives like Charen can do for their country is to build mountains out of molehills.

MARGARET CURTIS, ATLANTA

New ways needed to battle gridlock

The Atlanta Regional Commission’s survey of the 10-county region found the issue of most concern is transportation, “Region’s gridlock No. 1 concern again” (News, Nov. 7). This can be quickly translated to “congestion.” Working toward reducing congestion in the region is the best use of limited funds. Spending hundreds of millions on heavy rail that relatively few people can efficiently ride in spread-out metro Atlanta is a misuse of money. Congestion relief will come with an improved road system, more toll lanes, a single metrowide bus system and light rail. Also, the methods used in dealing with congestion in the last 40 years haven’t worked and should be replaced with new methods. For example, getting several political subdivisions within the metro area to tax themselves and to agree on the problem and the solution is likely to fail (see MARTA and T-SPLOST). Since metro Atlanta is key to the well-being of the entire state, the problem should be managed by state transportation professionals (GDOT) and funded by the state (more use of the motor fuel tax).

JOEL SMITH, STOCKBRIDGE

Dems should revamp tired old tactics

After the Democratic losses in the mid-term elections, I suppose we can be grateful that Mary Sanchez’s column “Election a step backward for women in Congress” (Opinion, Nov. 11) did not use the phrase “War on Women.” We were hopeful that after the failure of their desperate divide-and-conquer strategy, the Democrats would look at their party’s many failures of the last six years and offer reasonable, intelligent ideas instead of fanning the dying embers of sexism (and racism) for their short-term, spurious political gain. Alas, Ms. Sanchez’s column suggests otherwise. The recent election demonstrates two things: 1) Anyone of either sex or of any race can run for office and win, and 2) the electorate chose their representatives for their ideas, not their sex or their race. And isn’t that the way it should be?

JEFF BEAMER, ATLANTA

Election money better used elsewhere

What a shame that the more than $100 million spent on Georgia political races couldn’t have gone to help the people of Georgia, especially the children of our state, instead of the intensely negative ads of all candidates. There should be a cap on political spending.

BRENDA SMITH, SANDY SPRINGS

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