Letters to MotherJones.com

Clean elections don’t stand a chance
Re: “Donor-Free Democracy”
8/17/01

If this catches on, the insurance industry and the military-industrial complex will start throwing bags of money at entrenched lawmakers in Washington to prove that allowing just anyone to run for office with public funds smacks of communism.

Why should those people who ride the backs of the American worker want to change anything that would jeopardize their jobs? It’s a great idea, but I am afraid it will be smashed by political Luddites before it can really make a difference in American politics.

Robert Stottle

 

Break silence, not glass
Re: “Smashing Windows for a Better World”
8/16/01

Free trade is just another word for free (or nearly free) labor. Labor unions know this, and fight the good fight every day without much backing from the labor pools or the Republicans. Broken windows are fixed easier than broken heads.

Art Moore
Pinellas Park, Fla.


 

Violence doesn’t pay
Re: “Smashing Windows for a Better World”
8/14/01

For almost 150 years, nonviolence has helped transform a 5000-year-old system, and has made it less oppressive. Yes, sexism and gender roles are still rampant, but tens of millions of women have entered jobs that had been closed to them for eons. Feminists doubled the number of people eligible to vote without a single war or urban riot, and legal marriage was peacefully converted from de facto slavery to a relatively equal partnership.

Some of the best feminist tactics are already being practiced by other movements. Many radicals publish and organize instead of throwing rocks, and their ideas are as frightening to the mainstream as any bomb.

Let’s focus on nonviolent tactics even if they are less telegenic, because the loudest revolution is not necessarily the most successful. If we built a revolution that altered fundamental power relationships while being declared “terminally silly,” “strident,” and “irrelevant” by the media, it wouldn’t be the first time.

Dave White

 

Prison numbers insane
Re: “Debt to Society: The Real Price of Prisons”
8/13/01

Thank you for this incredible information. Any sane person can’t possibly believe that locking someone up for smoking pot for five years or more can be good for the nation.

The numbers are staggering—five hundred thousand drug offenders! And that prison spending outpaces education spending is also ludicrous.

It takes brave people like you to bring this to light and I applaud you. The time for bringing this to an end is definitely now.

Rico Moreno