Right to privacy trumps claims of telemarketers
Telemarketers contesting the Federal Trade Commission's (FTC) do-not-call list claim that it infringes upon their First Amendment rights ("2nd judge hangs up no-call registry," Sept. 26). But their rights pale in comparison to the rights of millions of homeowners seeking to block an invasion of their personal privacy and property.
As someone whose number is on the do-not-call list, I support the efforts to give the FTC the right to make sure unwanted calls can be blocked.
Telemarketers are trespassing on my phone lines, stealing my time, patience and space on my answering machine and inflicting the physical pain I incur in an effort to answer their unwanted calls.
For the past several months my answering machine message has been, "Please, do not leave any commercial, prerecorded messages after the tone. Official action to block such calls has been made." This request has had some positive results, but prerecorded messages override answering machine greetings and continue after I pick up and attempt to disconnect the intruder.
These calls must be blocked, as should the sale and sharing of names, addresses and phone numbers of customers from one organization or business to another.
E. M. Waters
Let me understand this: Telemarketers have the right to disturb me at their pleasure, but I don't have the right to tell them not to call.
Why are their rights any more important than mine?
Eve E. Prietz
A federal judge recently ruled that the Federal Trade Commission's "do not call" list violates constitutional free speech guarantees
I have only two questions for this judge: What's your home phone number and what time do you sit down to dinner?
Block solicitations from charities, too
Charitable organizations are exempt from the do-not-call list, and this is one of the points raised by the defenders of the free speech rights of telemarketers ("2nd judge hangs up no-call registry," Sept. 26). But I would like to know what the definition of a charitable organization is in terms of telephone solicitation.
When I get a call from someone purporting to represent an organizations, then later find out that (in many cases) only a fraction of the donations actually reach the given cause, I start to wonder where profit ends and charity begins.
And if the free speech argument for telemarketers rests on charitable organizations being exempt from the list, why not simply include them on the list as well and destroy that argument.
After all they can still get to us by mail or even, occasionally, by conscience.
Easier way to stop unwanted callers
I totally agree with halting the do-not-call list. Exempting charities and political fund raising and pollsters from such a list seems like a rather arbitrary way to create politically correct telemarketing ("2nd judge hangs up no-call registry," Sept. 26).
Since when was political fund-raising more ethically pure than selling anything else?
I would never put my name on such a do-not-call list. I have a simple way of responding to unwanted solicitations. I either say, "Not interested," or turn the ringer off.
Joyce C. Robinson
Lawsuits won't make marketers successful
If telemarketers think they can win against the do-not-call list by going to court, they're sadly mistaken. Imagine how the people who signed up for the list will respond to their calls if the list is blocked ("2nd judge hangs up no-call registry," Sept. 26).
I usually just hang up on phone solicitors, but if the do-not-call list is effectively blocked, I'll start keeping the callers on the line to waste their time before saying no.
The telemarketers just can't seem to get the fact that the people who signed up for the list wouldn't buy their products anyway.
California should try parliamentary rule
The state government of California, with all of its budget problems, must be at a standstill with the recall election pending.
To avoid having this happen again, California should revise its constitution to allow for a parliamentary form of government in which the governor is chosen by the majority party.
If a governor becomes ineffective, the state legislature could hold a vote of no-confidence and select another governor. This would eliminate the chaos of a recall election.
Burning our flag is an act of terror
The Sun's article "Flag burning leaves town baffled and angry" (Sept. 21) leaves me angry, too.
An enormous flag atop a mountain in Colorado was displayed to commemorate the victims of the Sept. 11 terror attacks. Our flag was terrorized, slashed with knives and torched by what appears to be anti-American or anti-war activists, who left a note denouncing American foreign policy and "literature likening the flag to a Nazi swastika."