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At some point, everyone needs help

First lady Michelle Obamaddresses Democratic National ConventiTuesday night Charlotte N.C.  |  J. Scott Applewhite~AP

First lady Michelle Obama addresses the Democratic National Convention on Tuesday night in Charlotte, N.C. | J. Scott Applewhite~AP

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Updated: October 7, 2012 7:56AM



Michelle Obama provided a summary in her speech at the Democratic convention that her husband’s administration wants everyone to be successful.

Providing affordable health care to everyone is imperative. Providing the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance program for hungry families so they can think and look for work is essential. Providing Medicare benefits to seniors without vouchers that will be depleted is critical. Providing women with the independence they worked hard to maintain is beneficial. Allowing people to find love and not be afraid to live alternative lifestyles is now acceptable.

Receiving government assistance is not a negative, it is a positive. At some point, everyone needs help.

Alanni Hooks, South Shore

Candidate’s policies, not wealth, matter

Mitt Romney’s fortune should not be an issue during this campaign because there have been plenty of progressive presidents who were born into wealth.

Theodore Roosevelt spoke out against the “malefactors of great wealth” and emphasized a Square Deal for the American people.

Franklin Roosevelt attacked the “economic royalists” and was considered a traitor to his class, but his New Deal did all it could to uplift the “forgotten man.”

And it was during the administration of John Kennedy that the Equal Pay Act was passed and it was during his presidency that the Civil Rights Act was introduced.

What should matter is not Romney’s wealth, but his substance and his heart.

Larry Vigon, Jefferson Park

What have Republicans done?

Steve Huntley, thanks for the dismal numbers you associate with Obama and the Democrats [“Some numbers for Dems to think about,” Sept. 4]. Still what have the Republicans or Romney done to improve any of those numbers for middle-class America to date?

Scott R. Zuhr, Park Ridge

Boycott outrageous earbud design

While shopping at my local Wal-Mart for iPod earphones, I was not surprised to see colorful styles for young buyers.

I was shocked, however, to find Wal-Mart selling earbuds in the shape of bullets. Bullets! In this society, what are we saying to our teens? “You’ve escaped getting a real bullet in you’re head so stick these in your ears”?

Wal-Mart is encouraging a company called Sentry, but there are other sellers online. It’s a free market, but I urge parents to boycott Wal-Mart until this horrible product is removed from their shelves. That’s what I plan to do.

Charmaine Spencer, Countryside

Pick woman for U.S. attorney

Women’s “firsts” have been in the news as of late. Recently, a woman became the CEO of Yahoo, a Fortune 500 company, while simultaneously announcing her upcoming maternity leave. Even more recently, women were admitted to Augusta National Golf Club after having been excluded for 80 years. 

Illinois now has the opportunity to make history if it announces the appointment of the first woman to hold the position of United States attorney for the Northern District of Illinois since the position was created in 1857.

Becoming the first woman to do so, Myra Bradwell passed the Illinois state bar examination 143 years ago. Since that time, thousands of women have followed in her footsteps. About 50 percent of all graduating law students are women, as are 31.9 percent of practicing attorneys nationwide.

Women are well-represented in the field of law, and they make the practice of law better.

In 2010, McKinsey & Company published a study,  Women Matter 2010, which suggested that companies where women are well-represented in top positions perform better than those without such representation. The office of U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Illinois would similarly benefit with a qualified woman at its helm.

This summer, United States Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald stepped down after nearly 11 years in the position. U.S. Senators Dick Durbin and Mark Kirk created a six-person screening panel to review applicants and make recommendations that will be forwarded to President Barack Obama for his review and selection. The president’s nomination must then be submitted to the Senate, and the nominee must be approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee and the full Senate.

The Women’s Bar Association of Illinois and all of the signatories set forth below ask that Senators Durbin and Kirk and their appointed panel make a historic decision by recommending a qualified woman to fill the vacancy left by Mr. Fitzgerald.

A qualified woman lawyer is out there — ready, willing and able to fill the important position of U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Illinois. The screening panel, the senators, and President Obama should choose her. Doing so would honor the legacy of Myra Bradwell and all the other female trailblazers in the field of law.

Karina Zabicki DeHayes, president,

Women’s Bar Association of Illinois;

Ngozi C. Okorafor, president

Black Women Lawyers’ Association of Greater Chicago;

Andrea S. Kramer, chair of the board,

Women’s Leadership and Mentoring Alliance



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