Dear Newark and Los Angeles: Please recall that my while my column defended the right of the whites in question to have their own private party, I also said the prom was wrong because it was hurtful to the young people it excluded. For that sentiment, I got my chops busted by many. I also said it's O'Reilly's job to seek out these kinds of stories, and that his portrayal of it was mostly fair. And I still don't believe segregated proms are in line with most Southerners' thinking. But I also still think Gov. Perdue should be given a little slack; he is new to his office and probably didn't have a feel yet for whether the whole situation was one for the state's elected chief executive.
In truth, Bill O'Reilly caught most of the savagery from our readers. One even put us in the same boat. A reader from Niles, Ill., wrote, "In this case, both you and O'Reilly are off target . . . there are just too many problems that need serious consideration."
Dear Niles: Thanks for your comment. And feel free to compare me to O'Reilly any ole time.
As for my recent column revealing America's split opinion on Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan -- should he serve another term? -- the overwhelming majority of respondents agreed with me and my feeling that Greenspan should kindly "get out!" A reader in Sarasota, Fla., wrote, "Finally, a man who understands the death of government under Greenspan. . . . I hate that Americans won't even try to understand about the evil man." Thanks, Sarasota reader. But I was just trying to say his time has come and gone; "evil" might be a bit strong.
Walnut Grove, Calif., said, "Hear hear. . . . While I'm not an economist, but rather a teacher of U.S. history, I always thought his famous quote on the irrationality of our exuberance was wrong-headed!"
And speaking of those who are not economists, a reader in Westport, Conn., points out, "Matt, as far as I can see, you really don't have the background to make an educated judgment about Alan Greensand (sic) . . . " Well, Westport, I confess that I'm just an ignorant backwoodsman who did some of that there book learnin' at England's Cambridge University, with an advanced degree in international relations. But I'll keep on trying to cipher my way through the numbers -- of polls, yes, but also of all those retirement plans that lost their value. But thanks for taking the time to express your sentiments. You may be right, after all. And thanks to everyone who writes with their thoughts and feelings. Next week, we'll look at the popularity of two brothers in a state that seems to decide the presidency.
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