Letters: The Democratic Contest, and Cockroaches Robert Siegel and Melissa Block read from listener e-mails about Friday's program. We hear criticism of a story on Texas voters watching a Democratic debate, and of our roundup of political ads. There's also praise for stories on candidates' health care plans and a Turkmen cockroach.
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Letters: The Democratic Contest, and Cockroaches

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Letters: The Democratic Contest, and Cockroaches

Letters: The Democratic Contest, and Cockroaches

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MELISSA BLOCK, host:

It's time now for some of your comments on Friday's program.

ROBERT SIEGEL, host:

Alex Jackson(ph) of Aurora, Colorado, writes: I listened to your story titled "Watching Democrats Debate in a Texas Taco Bar," and found it to be incredibly biased. There've been whole stories devoted to finding Republicans who won't vote for McCain, but for Hillary, it's women who will vote for her. How about interviewing women who won't vote for Hillary? Or African-Americans who won't vote for Obama? Or people who will vote for McCain?

BLOCK: In that same story, our reporter paraphrased a couple of women who said, there are some men who just aren't ready to vote for a woman for president. Well, that elicited this comment from Brian Martin(ph) of New York City. As a male voter who did not vote for Ms. Clinton, it was not because I resent the concept of a woman being president. That comment is nothing short of sexist. Last I checked, we were electing a president, not a race or gender.

SIEGEL: And Nicholas Clifford(ph) of New Haven, Vermont, writes: Interesting piece, Friday, on the Catholic vote, especially but not exclusively in Ohio. I wonder if we can expect similar pieces on A, the mainstream Protestant vote; B, the evangelical Protestant vote; C, the Jewish vote; and D, the secularist vote?

BLOCK: Allison Lygan(ph), of Clinton, Louisiana, wasn't thrilled by our conversation with Ken Goldstein of the Wisconsin Advertising Project about the latest round of political ads.

Enough of dramatic critique of the commercials of our presidential candidates. Can we talk about substance, the candidates themselves and their ability to handle the issues the country faces?

SIEGEL: Well, at least we got a little praise for our political coverage. This is from Susan Tate(ph). Thank you for today's analysis of Clinton and Obama's health care policies. Please have more of this issues information and less coverage of how the candidates are competing. My dream is that we all would look forward to election season because we would become educated about crucial choices the country faces.

BLOCK: Luisa Respolli(ph), who says she works in an animal science department, heard our interview about how recalled beef can be traced. And she writes: I have yet to hear anyone talk to those who actually work in the beef industry or discuss how likely it is to get ill from the supposedly tainted beef. The regulations of slaughter may not be perfect, though constant changes are being made to respond to problems, such as recalling beef, performing extensive testing for e-coli, and reminding people to properly handle and cook beef.

SIEGEL: And finally, Ted Diamond(ph) of Seattle, e-mails us, saying this: I thoroughly enjoyed Melissa Block's story on the peripatetic cockroach that toppled an empire, or at least caused a large number of employees of the main state news channel in Turkmenistan to seek alternative career options.

I can only wonder, would the same thing happen if, say, a cricket got into an NPR sound studio during a broadcast of ALL THINGS CONSIDERED? What? Not so high and mighty now, are we, Miss We-Are-Radio-Not-Television? Mr. Diamond concludes, sorry, I couldn't resist. True or not, this story gave me a much-needed laugh.

BLOCK: And us, too. We aim to please, and whether we succeed or not, we'd like to hear from you. Go to npr.org and select Contact Us at the top of the page. And please remember to tell us where you live and how to pronounce your name.

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