Letters: Vision Therapy, Fountains of Wayne Redux
STEVE INSKEEP, host:
And it's time now to catch up on some of the mail.
We received very different reactions to our story about Cindy Sheehan. She lost a son in Iraq and is now camped outside President Bush's ranch, demanding to meet with him again. Tim Kerns(ph) of Farmington, New Mexico, writes, `Thank you for your coverage of Ms. Sheehan's protest vigil. The American public and the media should be demanding the truth from the president.'
Lynn Johnson(ph) of Salt Lake City writes, `Perhaps I'm the only one in America to find Ms. Sheehan's political use of her son's death nauseating.' `Her son was a volunteer,' she writes, `and his life did not belong to Ms. Sheehan. It belonged to him. He exercised his freedom to choose and it's disrespectful to claim in his memory a right to attack his commander in chief.'
We received many e-mails about an interview with Senator Rick Santorum. At one point in that discussion, the senator raised questions about the theory of evolution.
(Soundbite from August 4th, 2005)
Senator RICK SANTORUM ("It Takes a Family"): Does man have a purpose? Is there a purpose for our lives? Or are we just simply the result of chance? If we're the result of chance, if we're simply a mistake of nature, then that puts a different moral demand on us. In fact, it doesn't put a moral demand on us than if, in fact, we are a creation of a being that has moral demands.
INSKEEP: David Rhodes(ph) of Storrs, Connecticut, disagreed with the idea that without a reason for creation, we have no moral mandate. He writes, `It follows that the only reason Senator Santorum might have for doing the right thing is out of fear of a higher being or following a set of mandates without question. Sorry, Senator, I prefer to think for myself and to be motivated by my conscience.'
On to other stories now, one of our Take Two stories profiled a family starting a business in vision therapy which is used to strengthen the connection between the brain and the eye. Some say it helps with learning disabilities, but we failed to point out that a number of medical groups, including the American Academy of Ophthalmology, say there is no good scientific evidence that visual training helps with reading and learning. Jeffrey Bloom(ph), a pediatric ophthalmologist from Chicago, adds, `Parents should consult with their doctors before enrolling their children in expensive programs of unproven benefit.'
And we have a correction this morning. Sports commentator John Feinstein said the Baltimore Orioles star Rafael Palmeiro took, quote, "the coward's way out when he did not answer questions at a teleconference about his alleged use of steroids." In fact, after reading a statement, Palmeiro did briefly answer questions during that teleconference earlier this month.
Finally, we have a word of reassurance to those of you who experienced a rare disorder last week: driveway moment deja vu. Last Wednesday, our story about the band Fountains of Wayne was a repeat. It first aired on July 21st but only in the earliest feed of our program. The later feeds were covered over by news of the London attacks. We rarely rebroadcast stories after the first air date, but the next time we do, we'll be sure to tell you first.
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