Letter: Apologizing to Kerry

Former Senator Bob Dole should be ashamed of himself for his comments regarding John Kerry’s Purple Heart medals.

On Sunday morning, when he made his comments, it had become quite apparent this was nothing but a political smear, and his joining the attack coarsens his reputation and shows the desperation of the Bush campaign.

It should not even be an issue that Sen. Kerry served our country with distinction. This fact is backed up by eye witness accounts of those who were there and is documented by the Navy’s citations on his medals.

Many of the same people who criticize him now are on record as praising his conduct earlier.

By demeaning his service, this demeans the service of every other person who has served our nation. He didn’t award these medals to himself, they were awarded by our government. Questioning this questions the integrity of the entire process.

Should we look back at Sen. Dole’s service and second guess his valor too?

The truth is, these charges aren’t about what happened in Vietnam more than 30 years ago. Many of the veterans making the charges are angry about Kerry’s testimony against the war after he came back. If that’s the case, we should debate that.

Better yet, why don’t we debate the issues that truly concern us now, such as the war in Iraq, terrorism, the economy and the need for an effective health-care system.

This is the worst of mudslinging politics. Senator Dole owes John Kerry, and every other person who has served honorably, an apology.

Peter Thompson

Lisle, Illinois