Setting the record straight

Published 4:11 pm Thursday, November 9, 2017


Dear Mr. Cooper,

I don’t believe I have met you or, for that matter, have the foggiest idea who you might be. However, you suggest I am a sexist. This also causes me to wonder if you have met the chaplain, who you suggest is a racist zealot. If you had taken the time to really evaluate my article, you would have seen I was comparing David Emert to the other men on the board. Men to men. Of course there are women on the board, and I assume, not knowing them, that they are competent, qualified and do a good job. I, for the life of me, cannot see how my column “insinuates that these women have not played integral roles in Prince Edward County government…”

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If you are at least a little interested in what I think of women in public office, I suggest you read the opinion piece I wrote (in this paper) in support of our very qualified, competent and effective commonwealth’s attorney, Ms. Clark. When I was on active duty, a reporter asked one of my ship’s commanding officers about me. His reply was, “The admiral can be a tough SOB, but I can positively assure you he is an equal opportunity SOB.” That sums it up. I could care less what color or gender you are. I do, however, deeply care when you serve in a public office that places you in charge of the lives, dollars and affairs of other men (all-inclusive, meaning women also) that you are competent and are held to a higher standard. That is what the issue in this and any other election should be about.

I also noted your disappointment in that The Farmville Herald should print such a piece. This world is filled with those who, like you, would stifle any free speech they don’t agree with. It is our great Constitution and, in this case, the First Amendment that makes us different and, I would add, better than every other country on this planet. I suggest you read the First Amendment, as well as the opinions of our Supreme Court justices on Freedom of the Press. I believe it will answer your question as to why it was printed. With apologies to Shakespeare only, he would tell you, “The fault lies not in our stars but in ourselves.”

Leonard F. Picotte

USN, Retired