STEPHEN F. LYNCH is entitled to his evolving opinions regarding war with Iraq. But why is the congressman from South Boston entitled to duck an opponent who questions his role as the Joe Lieberman of Massachusetts?
....A former ironworker, Lynch stresses his common man touch. But he's not anxious to display it in any debate setting.
The interesting thing about Joan Vennochi's most recent column is she lets Lynch do most of the talking.
Asked to explain his reluctance to debate, Lynch, instead, chastised Dunkelbarger for failing to question him during a voter forum on Iraq policy that Lynch held last February at Curry College.
``He came to the forum. He sat 10 seats from an open microphone. It was a big crowd. I don't know why he didn't get up and speak. . . . He had that goddamn open mike," said Lynch -- as if that should satisfy a congressman's obligation to answer for his votes. (Emphasis mine.)
Dunkelbarger had that "goddamn open mike?" "Goddamn?" Pardon me for being a tad Puritanical, but I don't think "goddamn" should be in the lexicon of a Congressman's vocabulary - especially when they're talking to the media. Beyond the Congressman's language, though, he betrays his lack of respect for Democracy. Dunkelbarger's candidacy is worth, begrudgingly ("goddamn"), one open-mic question, insofar as Steven Lynch cares.
In essence, Phil Dunkelbarger is worth no more or less than anyone else's voice in this campaign, this despite Dunkelbarger got the thousands of signatures needed to mount a Congressional Campaign. What's more revealing is the fact that Lynch doesn't respect the need to talk to any constituents - after all, it wasn't "goddamn" Phil Dunkelbarger - it was "goddamn open mike." Sadly, that wasn't the worst thing Representative Lynch had to say. He's the gift that keeps on giving.
Asked if he faults Bush for the shifting mission, he answered, ``I do. They've had the same approach, this stay-the-course approach."
Lynch's answer makes his June 16 vote [to back the "stay-the-course" strategy] all the more curious.... To that, Lynch replied that since it was a nonbinding resolution, ``It didn't mean a hell of a lot to me. If it passes, it meant nothing; if it doesn't pass, it meant nothing." (Emphasis mine.)
More than 2,000 dead Americans may not mean "a hell of a lot" to Steven Lynch, but surely the people of the 9th District care. Unlike Representative Lynch, they aren't out of touch. The fact that Steven Lynch doesn't care about a resolution vote illustrates the exact reason why he should be sent home. He doesn't care - that's his common theme. He doesn't care about the Iraqis who are being maimed and slaughtered, doesn't care about the hundreds of billions we've spent in Iraq and certainly doesn't care about the people who live in the 9th Congressional District.
With this column, Joan Vennochi is officially on a r o l l. Say what you want about Vennochi, but she certainly cares about the upcoming election and has written column after column in service to it. She gets that Democracy is important and elections are the bedrock of democracy - unlike certain incumbents.
In short, she's doing what columnists are supposed to do: hit on the big ideas that reporters often miss or can't cover in one story. She's speaking truth to power and providing readers with the knowledge they need to be able to vote - knowledge hard to find from the so-called journalists who are supposed to be covering these races. Joan Vennochi deserves some high respect (and a hearty raise) from the Boston Globe for not only writing great columns, but doing it with style, integrity - and information that no Boston Globe reporter has yet to dig up.