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Jeff Ackerman should be commended for his courage in expressing viewpoints unlikely to endear him to conservative readers. I applaud his ability to shift opinion after contemplating new information.

After years of observing how the Iraq war has failed, and endangered the American people (and entire planet), Jeff has come to recognize that the war is not only unwinnable but historically and morally unjustified. He also encourages us to not allow our rights to be lost (i.e., politically usurped) in our quest to preserve them.

The single operative word here is the verb “learn.” In stating we need to get our troops home soon, Jeff discusses how he “learned” to see America’s meddling in the internal affairs of countries (whom we deem strategic to our financial interests) as the patently illegal foreign policy it is. This will not make him popular with the knee-jerk “patriots,” who have great enthusiasm for bombing weak countries, but lack the moral courage to take personal responsibility for their own killing. It does, however, illustrate the type of intellectual and moral scrutiny necessary to make a democracy work.

Those unwilling to undergo such a painful process fail our democratic system.

William Larsen

Nevada City