Rep. Westmoreland’s ‘uppity’ vs. Jimmy Carter’s ‘black boy’

I think Rep. Lynn Westmoreland’s (R-Ga.) using the racially charged word “uppity” is abominable, not to mention stupid. Even more stupid when the reporter asked for a clarification and got the same word again! (Article, “Westmoreland calls Obama ‘uppity,’” Sept. 4.)

I admit I have used the word “elitist” to describe certain politicians (including Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill.) and members of the media out of touch with ordinary Americans. I have never once considered it to be a code word for “uppity.” I am sure most people would think “elitist” would be more similar to “snobby.”

I do find curious your omission of former President Jimmy Carter’s recent use of “black boy” to describe Sen. Obama. You would not try to paint only Republicans as racist, would you?

Carter knows better, and so do you.

Charlotte, N.C.

Delightful absences

From Linda King

I found it delightful that Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton didn’t speak at the Democratic National Convention.

It has been a pleasure to watch Sen. Barack Obama (Ill.) speak without the two of them hanging over his shoulder for a photo op. Their message to inspire all to remain victims is very detrimental to success.

I will vote for Mr. Obama this year. I am a registered Republican.

Minnetonka, Minn.

Uncommon wealth

From Travis Shiverdecker

Vanity Fair reported that Cindy McCain wore a pair of earrings worth $280,000 at the Republican convention. While presidential nominee Sen. John McCain of Arizona and running mate Gov. Sarah Palin of Alaska claim that Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois is out of touch with real Americans, the prospective first lady wore a pair of earrings worth more than 1.5 times the median home value in the United States.

I respect Mr. McCain and his wife and do not resent their lifestyle. What I have a problem with is Mr. McCain’s dishonesty about his understanding and connection with the common American.

I am 23 years old, in the middle of graduate school, and already have over $150,000 in student loans. Yet, I heard nothing at the Republican convention to address people like me, a real American.

I did everything society expected me to do: I did well and paid attention in high school, went to a respectable state college, and am now in graduate school studying to become an architect. When I finish next year, I will have so much student loan debt that it will take me half of my productive life to pay it off. During that time, dreams of home ownership, starting my own small business, raising a family and vacationing a mere couple of weeks a year will all be put on hold. …

Washington