Six games into the season, with a 4-2 record, linebackers Michael Mauti and Gerald Hodges are clearly outstanding players who belong on the list of quarterfinalists for the Lombardi Award, yet they were omitted. Why? Was it fear of association with Penn State? Were there worries about financial consequences, perhaps a loss of sponsorship, if a player from Penn State was nominated? Those making the list lacked the courage, character, and conviction to do the right thing. Anybody else see a similarity?
I am proud of the Penn State players who stayed at the university they love. They didn't stay because it was easy, or for financial reasons. They stayed because it was the right thing to do. They have the courage, character, and conviction to do the right thing.
Lori Friel, Collegeville
Most qualified leader for the times
Not one of the Sunday letters mentioned President Obama's rescue of the automobile industry, which restored the economies of at least two states, Michigan and Ohio. Mitt Romney would have let the auto industry file for bankruptcy. His view of the economy is simplistic: lower business tax rates. Experienced business owners know there are many other factors that are critical to creating more jobs: a healthy growth rate for a service or product; the resources to increase an operation; skilled workers; a reliable supply chain; and more. The federal government is a great help to businesses of all sizes. No other source can help owners as much.
It took World War II to jump-start the economy during the Great Depression. Let's help our unemployed citizens become fully employed, but don't expect the Great Recession of the most complex economy in the world to disappear in just 45 months. It will take more time, and President Obama is the most qualified to lead us through these difficult times.
Martha Broad, Norristown
Forward to what exactly?
The press continues to say Mitt Romney is vague about his plans. President Obama's plan was "hope and change," and now it's "Forward." Forward to what? Business as usual? Another $6 trillion in debt? Continue to kick the can down the road? No budgets for the next four years? Gas prices double again, to $8 a gallon? Continue to have the Fed print more money? Continue his inability to work with the opposition party?
Romney will target taxes and the national debt with a laser beam. He will work with both sides, as he did in Massachusetts as governor, to accomplish his goals. His competence as a business leader and as governor will serve this nation much better than the current administration.
Mike Sofranko, Valley Township, Sofranko@comcast.net
National spending priorities
In the first debate, Mitt Romney pledged to cut federal funding to any program he thought was not worth borrowing from China to pay for, including PBS. To Americans who are very concerned about the size of the deficit, this assertion might show sound judgment about spending priorities. But whose priorities? Romney's.
As president, Romney would cut spending on all programs that educate, enrich, and promote cultural awareness to Americans. He would cut funding to the National Endowment for the Arts, to public education, and to social programs that provide a safety net to lower-income folks.
Romney would spend money as George W. Bush did before him. He would subsidize oil companies, agribusiness, and other large corporations that would donate to his reelection. He would increase military spending because he prioritizes war over infrastructure, just like Bush. Any cause that benefits wealthy CEOs, he would consider worthy of borrowing from China.
If you trust Romney to set national priorities for spending in the next four to eight years, I hope you have a lot of money saved up. You're going to need it.
Julie Ferris, West Chester
Headed in right direction?
With gasoline at nearly $4 a gallon, 50 percent of recent college graduates either unemployed or underemployed, median household income down by about $5,000, and yearly annual deficits of more than $1 trillion, President Obama tells us that we are headed in the right direction. While the president and the Democrats are championing the recent drop in unemployment, the underlying data show that most of the new jobs were part-time or temporary, and that it was the second month in a row that manufacturing hiring dropped significantly. If this is forward, what would going backward be like?
Antonio Gatto, Philadelphia
Going after Big Bird
Mitt Romney wants to cut funding for PBS? That is a minuscule percentage of the federal budget. Why would he cut there? There are hundreds of millions of dollars lurking in the budget that could be pared down or eliminated. Why pick on something that brings so much joy to so many Americans? Why pick on Big Bird, of all things? The answer is simple: Romney doesn't understand average people. He is the man who demeaned 47 percent of the population. The children watching Sesame Street or Nova or the parents who watch Antiques Roadshow probably haven't donated $50,000 to have breakfast with Romney lately. I guess that, in Romney's world, such people (PBS viewers) just don't make the cut.
Sheryl Kalick, Philadelphia
So edgy to mock religious beliefs
Thanks to Garry Trudeau's Doonesbury comic strip this week and The Inquirer for breaking new ground. Mocking the religious beliefs of a presidential candidate is so creative, so edgy, I can't help but think of the potential targets in future elections. If Joe Lieberman runs, Trudeau can skewer Jews - think of all the jokes. Possibly a Catholic - or should I say papist - would be an easy target. I can understand why Trudeau started this new line of satire: The left thinks it's so politically correct to hate Mormons.
Philip J. Donohue, Alloway
Watch the body language
Mitt Romney won the presidential debate? A man who feels entitled to ignore the rules he himself agreed to, who interrupts his opponent and overruns the moderator to hog more of the time for himself and his well-rehearsed lines? A man who is suddenly a moderate after months of pandering to the tea party? Are we a nation so used to bullying talk radio that we no longer recognize civility, thoughtfulness, and facts as worth listening to? We were told to watch the body language. What I saw was a bully gloating in unfairly abusing his privileges.
Carol LeFevre, Gwynedd
Like the look of Smith's campaign
Although I strongly disagree with many of the positions advocated by Republican U.S. Senate candidate Tom Smith, I do respect his television ad, which is totally positive. The ad depicts some of Smith's agenda and has no negative statements about Bob Casey, the Democratic incumbent. Smith's is the sort of campaign that should be the rule rather than the exception.
Denis Lohman, Devon