Letter: Not allowing any criticism of president is unpatriotic

Published 9:51 am Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Let’s get this straight. Someone writes a column regarding politics on a regular basis over many years. The columns are well researched, expressing opinions about facts in our world. This person is a trained teacher with two master’s degrees. Then one day someone emails you and says we don’t like what this columnist writes; in fact, we dislike it so much that unless you stop the columnist from writing these columns we will discontinue our subscription. So, you go to the columnist and say you can’t write these columns anymore because a couple of people are so upset that they are going to stop subscribing to the paper.

Now, what do you suppose is preventing these upset people from writing a response to the columnist objecting to what has been written? If you keep up with the above scenario there will be nothing left to read in the paper. And there will be no subscribing readers left because they will have at one time or another objected to someone’s view printed in the paper and canceled their subscriptions.

Printed on the Opinion page of the Tribune are these words (the italicized part is my emphasis). “The First Amendment: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for redress of grievances.”

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Judy Menssen offers a quote from President Theodore Roosevelt, who said, “To announce that there must be no criticism of the president right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile (like that of humble submissive slaves or servants), but it is morally treasonable to the American public.”

Our newly elected president spent four long years promoting the notion that President Obama was not really born in America. He promoted this lie over and over. The newly elected president kept feeding the undercurrent in this country (in my opinion) that a black man should never have become president; therefore, he must be illegitimate. “Alternative” facts come very easily and frequently with this newly elected president. He needs to be held accountable, not excused because, somehow, he is the only one who can make our already great country great again.

I would encourage those who don’t want the president held up to scrutiny that you reread the above comments of President Theodore Roosevelt and reread the First Amendment.

Joel B. Erickson

Albert Lea