Letters: Chamber Of Commerce; iPad Storybooks

Listeners react to our report on President Obama's attempt to reach out to the Chamber of Commerce — a group that has opposed him on nearly every major issue since he's been in office; and to an All Tech Considered segment on iPad storybook apps. Hosts Robert Siegel and Melissa Block read e-mails from our listeners.

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ROBERT SIEGEL, host:

It's time now for your letters.

And yesterday, we reported on President Obama's attempt to reach out to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, a group that has opposed him on most big issues since he's been in office. The business lobby also spent millions of dollars against Democrats in last year's midterm elections.

MELISSA BLOCK, host:

But several of you bristled when we called the Chamber of Commerce one of President Obama's most powerful enemies.

Tim Caldwell, a small business owner and member of the local Chamber of Commerce in Lyme, New Hampshire, writes this: The use of the word enemies to describe a group that has a different agenda than the president was unfortunate and certainly does not promote NPR's general effort to bring civility to public discourse. Using the word enemy has the effect of demonizing one's adversary and reduces the likelihood of constructive negotiations. Aren't we trying to do better than that?

SIEGEL: In yesterday's ALL TECH CONSIDERED segment, tech writer and regular guest Omar Gallaga told us how the iPad and its applications have changed bedtime for his 3-year-old daughter Lilly.

OMAR GALLAGA: Her small hands flip past pages of apps, and she taps a finger on the ones she wants.

(Soundbite if iPad app)

Unidentified Woman: (As Narrator) Once upon a time, there was a man and a woman.

BLOCK: Well, this high-tech twist on the traditional bedtime story worried and even saddened some of you.

Steve Emahiser of Nashville writes: These products are a gigantic step backward for children. Hopefully, this will be followed up by an uplifting story about the great things that are happening to children in the realm of outdoor play and unhooking from screen time.

SIEGEL: Oh, please. Keep your letters coming. You can write to us at npr.org. Just click on Contact Us.

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