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Obama hate, Innovation Awards hubbub
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Stop with the Hitler comparisons already


I am going to keep this brief. I was recently in a coffee shop in town and overheard an appalling conversation taking place between a man and a woman. The man I make reference to made the following statements:

"You wait and see, Obama is going to be just like Hitler. He is getting the masses to follow his word." This guy went on and on about his hate for Obama.

I have no problem with someone having an intelligent discussion about politics with another person. I do have a problem when someone dishonors the over six million Jews, disabled, gays, Muslims and others who were exterminated by comparing Obama to Hitler.

I have a distant living relative from Germany who still denies much of what went on in Germany in the 1930s ever took place. Her belief is that the black and white footage was from the U.S. and British propaganda filmmakers.

I am sorry this guy had to share such ignorant thoughts in a public setting, one where kids could overhear him.

Anyone who knows me, knows I am open-minded enough to question Republican/Democratic views in this country and I do not support one person over another.

I am proud to be an American, but disappointed when such ignorant comments are made in a country where we have such an accessible education system.

Harvie Dent


Hubbub at Creative Coast awards show


Savannah police threatened 20 gay leafletters with handcuffs, arrest, and a ride in a paddy wagon for passing out fliers on a public sidewalk in front of the Trustees Theater (owned by the Savannah College of Art & Design), in downtown Savannah. 

Savannah's well-dressed and powerful were attending the "Innovation Awards," patting themselves on the back for being a progressive city. 

Outside, a swarm of police scattered the leafletters, claiming the sidewalks on both sides of the street were private for the evening, and that they would be arrested for just walking on the sidewalk. 

The city has since confirmed that the event permit did not make the public sidewalks "private", giving only the right to keep cars off a one block stretch of Broughton Street. 

We appreciate having received apologies from The Creative Coast and the City of Savannah, and we appreciate the meeting Alderman Van Johnson has arranged with the interim Police Chief. 

We have yet to hear from the person who used his "great power" to summon a large number of police to commit a crime, i.e. throwing U.S. citizens off public sidewalks because he didn't agree with their opinions.  
Moreover, why did prominent politicians, including Alderman Tony Thomas and County Commission Chairman Pete Liakakis, who were in attendance, stand by and watch as their Police committed this embarrassment?

The incident is a reminder that innovation exists in many American cities, but beautiful and romantic Savannah is not yet on the list.

Kevin Clark


Editor's Note: I ordinarily refrain from lengthy responses to reader letters on the basis that the letters page is the place where everyone gets a free shot to have their say. In this case, however, because of the serious nature of the charge and the paper's relationship to the event, I do feel obliged to offer a response.

The Creative Coast Innovation Awards event was proudly cosponsored by Connect Savannah, and I was one of the "well-dressed and powerful" people you mention that were in attendance. Because I am rarely, if ever, described in that fashion, I do appreciate your letter - though I certainly don't recall patting myself on the back for anything.

Since I'm indirectly referenced in your letter, I'll also take the liberty of differing with your statement that Savannah "is not on the list" of progressive cities on the basis of this isolated, unfortunate incident.

It seems counterproductive to decry the lack of progressivism in Savannah while simultaneously choosing to protest one of the few truly progressive organizations - or even somewhat progressive organizations - in town.

As for the behavior of those gathered on Broughton Street, from the vantage point of most people in attendance the incident was not clearly identifiable as having anything to do with leafleting or access to public sidewalks. I certainly did not identify it as such at the time.