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Surprise Party

One has to wonder: Where were the Tea Partyers when Bush and Cheney lied to get us into the Iraq war ["It's Tea Time," Sept. 27]? Where were they when Guantánamo Bay and Abu Ghraib tarnished our reputation worldwide? And where were they when Republicans' trickle-down economic policy in the first eight years of this century ground our economy into the dirt? Now all of a sudden, after Obama has been trying to clean up the mess in less than two years in office, they are "fed up," want to "restore honor" and want their voices heard?

Wen Chen, MIDDLETON, WIS.

When I saw your cover line, I was apprehensive, since the national media have been so far off base on real Tea Party people. You helped me overcome my doubt. Not once did I see the word racist or extremist in your story. You even got the players right, using art size to denote importance. You played it straight down the middle, and we need more political reporting like yours.

Ron Hill, BEACON, N.Y.

I suggest the Tea Party candidates, to prove their sincerity, publicly vow not to accept any big-government perks, like a transportation allowance or insurance, if they win, and to serve only one term lest they themselves become part of the problem.

David Kelly, TUCSON, ARIZ.

I was shocked by the photograph of the rally in Flagstaff, Ariz., showing young children holding Tea Party signs. If there is anything this country needs less, it is school-age children growing up blindly indoctrinated in their parents' political opinions, whatever those opinions may be. What this country does need are citizens who can process ideas, think critically and help arrive at solutions.

David Cohen, WYCKOFF, N.J.

We're Here, We're Peers, Get Used to It

If the Catholic Church has no authority to confer ordination on women because Jesus had no female Apostles, then no Native Americans, Eskimos or South Americans should be ordained either ["Robes for Women," Sept. 27]. The Catholic Church condemned Galileo as a heretic in 1633 for his correct theory that the earth revolves around the sun--and did not formally clear him of heresy charges until 1992. How many more years will it take to see the lack of logic in its position against ordaining women?

Jim Brennan, ROCKY POINT, N.Y.

There is only one Catholic Church. There are tens of thousands of Protestant churches. These good women and their followers have more in common with those churches than with the mother church that Christ created with his Apostles more than 2,000 years ago in that upper room.

Jim Baxter, BEAUMONT, TEXAS

Kudos to Jane Via and Nancy Corran as they carry out their revolutionary priesthood at Mary Magdalene Apostle Catholic Community in San Diego. Remember that the religious authorities burned Joan of Arc at the stake, then ultimately canonized her as a saint.

Daniel J. Dinan, SAN DIEGO

As Victor Hugo said, "One resists the invasion of armies; one does not resist the invasion of ideas." All the guys in robes in the world cannot stop an idea whose time has come.

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