Opinion: This country has no use for John Kelly’s nostalgia

Chief of Staff John Kelly takes questions during the White House daily briefing on Oct. 19.
(Shawn Thew / EPA)

To the editor: I listened to White House Chief of Staff John F. Kelly’s statement after Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-Fla.) relayed what President Trump told the widow of a fallen soldier. When he spoke as a Gold Star father and retired military general, he was eloquent and touching. (“Kelly might not be like Trump, but he seems like many Trump voters,” Oct. 20)

However, when he followed up with his attack on Wilson, in which he criticized her for a speech she gave in 2015 at a federal building dedication, I was stunned. Stunned! And I was further stunned when I watched the video of Wilson’s entire speech, which was nothing like Kelly had described.

So, when Kelly longs for those sacred old days when we respected women, life, religion and Gold Star families, I would add two things that he has obviously forgotten: respect for the truth and a willingness to apologize when you get something wrong.

Christina Anderson, Hacienda Heights



To the editor: I’m a little bemused by Kelly’s harking back to a time when things, in his view, were much better.

When men were excited to go into battle for their country? When women were sacred, whatever that means? When people obeyed without question the rules handed down by authorities, including the military?

Some of us have moved on.

Many have come to realize that fighting wars is stupid and are working on better, saner ways to resolve differences. Women are moving, albeit slowly, out of the role of valued possession of men and into a position alongside men. People are becoming aware of the self-serving venality of some in positions of authority and are on occasion disobeying the rules.

This is a new century. We have moved on.

Zena Thorpe, Chatsworth


To the editor: Although I’m almost Kelly’s and President Trump’s age, I do not share their nostalgia for the good old days.

Back then, I couldn’t buy a house without a male co-signer. I didn’t dream of going beyond the secretarial pool, and my college choices led only to teaching or nursing.

Kelly and Trump miss the days when the white guys had a chokehold on society.

Cheryl Clark, Long Beach

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