Letters: Speed Cameras, Lehman Bros, and "You Lie!"

Listeners weigh in on the question of race in the Obama-Wilson "You Lie!" incident, the one-year anniversary of the collapse of Lehman Brothers, and those sneaky red light and speed cameras.

Copyright © 2009 NPR. For personal, noncommercial use only. See Terms of Use. For other uses, prior permission required.

REBECCA ROBERTS, host:

Now, to your letters.

(Soundbite of music)

ROBERTS: It's Tuesday, the day we read from your emails and Web comments.

President Jimmy Carter jumped into the debate over what's driving anger against President Obama. He says it's racism. During our conversation last week about the line between dissent and disrespect, many of you agreed.

This email from Mario Acevedo in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma. It not only strikes me as this black man is driving up the deficit, but more like this black man is spending the white people's money. Just listen to the derogatory comments out there.

We also heard from many of you who disagreed. Objection to the direction of our president has nothing to do with race, argued Bob Front(ph) in Florida. I may not always agree with him, but that doesn't mean I object to his race. Give us some credit. Policy, not race, is the issue.

And on the one year anniversary of the collapse of Lehman Brothers, we looked at what's changed on Wall Street. Connie Self(ph) in Idaho told us not much. I've been talking with my bank about modifying my mortgage. At first, they told me it would be at least four months before I would hear anything. I'm upside-down on my mortgage. Houses just like mine in my small development are selling from as low as $20,000. I've been advised that if the bank won't lower the interest rate on my mortgage and make it more affordable, I should walk away.

Tina in Vancouver, Washington has had enough of the government in the economy. We have to stop infantilizing the American consumer. I do not appreciate my money being used to pay off the debts of those who've been irresponsible. And I don't want to hear about your interest rates. You borrowed, you had the opportunity to read the fine print, and if you didn't know what you were signing, that is your fault, not mine and not the government's.

Red lights and speed cameras also lit many of you up. Barbara dropped us this note from Modesto, California. My teenage son, within 24 hours of getting his license, ran a red light at an intersection with a camera. The citation arrived in the mail, along with the information to view the pictures on online, as well as streaming video of the incident. Denial was absolutely out of the question. The fine was a huge incentive for him to slow down and drive as he was taught. He's been ticket-free since that time, almost two years ago. Did the cameras work? This mom thinks so.

Another listener wasn't so sure. While rushing my wife to the hospital two months ago, I was caught not making a complete stop at a red light. The ticket was $125. To protest the ticket, I would've had to take off several hours from work with no guarantee of winning. It's great having a Big Brother sometimes. That email from Mike Campbell(ph) in Lafayette, Louisiana.

If you have comments, questions or corrections for us, the best way to reach us is by email. Our address is talk@npr.org.

(Soundbite of music)

ROBERTS: I'm Rebecca Roberts. This is NPR News.

Copyright © 2009 NPR. All rights reserved. No quotes from the materials contained herein may be used in any media without attribution to NPR. This transcript is provided for personal, noncommercial use only, pursuant to our Terms of Use. Any other use requires NPR's prior permission. Visit our permissions page for further information.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by a contractor for NPR, and accuracy and availability may vary. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Please be aware that the authoritative record of NPR's programming is the audio.

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.