America needs more Dennis Kucinichs

David Bright

Dear editor,

Having once been a columnist at a university newspaper, I understand the giddiness writers get seeing their name and scorching commentary in print. But having worked in the real world for more than 30 years since leaving the warm arms of the university, I know that writers also need a sense of decency and respect.

Jen Steer displays neither in her comments about Rep. Dennis Kucinich, in her Feb. 12 column, “Dark horses in the race.”

Dennis Kucinich is the 2003 recipient of the Gandhi Peace Award. He is the only presidential candidate who voted against the Iraq war resolution, the only candidate honestly working for peace and to counter the culture of war and violence now coming out of Washington.

Steer should pay a visit to her school’s own Center for Applied Conflict Management, dedicated to remembering — and preventing a recurrence of — the tragic events at Kent State on May 4, 1970. On that day, war protest became more than a “major annoyance” for four Kent State students shot by American soldiers during a protest of America’s attack on a foreign country.

I’m sure Steer will be proud of the degree she will receive from Kent State. But many Americans my age will never be able to hear the words Kent State without remembering that day in 1970. Perhaps were there more people like Kucinich around back then those four students would be alive today.

Kucinich is carrying a message of peace to the people of this country and the world.

Steer’s contention that he is “one of the craziest public speakers” she has ever seen tells me she has perhaps seen him speak but not listened to him speak.

I have heard Rep. Kucinich speak — to college students, to church congregations and at political gatherings. He is inspirational, and his words ring true.

I sense in Steer’s words anguish, frustration and fear. I hope as she moves forward into the world she will be able to leave those things behind and learn to live instead with insight, inspiration and hope.

David Bright

Dixmont, Maine