Last Monday, July 1, The Bee published a letter from Michael Der Manouel of Fresno. In it he sharply criticized the Democratic party, women who are in it, and four congressmen who are heads of powerful committees. Here are letters to the editor in reply to Mr. Der Manouel:
Der Manouel unwilling to adapt
As a 62-year-old Christian woman who also happens to be a registered Democrat, I could choose to be offended, even outraged by the opinion of Michael Der Manouel. Instead, I pity him for his failure to adapt to even the least of changes.
His argument is not new or original or even based in fact. It is a tired, repetitive and angry view of the world, and the only way of life that he is afraid of losing is the one that keeps him and other men who share his view in control.
Angela Humphrey, Fresno
Proof of who is a real American
In his letter of July 1, Michael Der Manouel accuses Democratic women, which includes me, of myriad terrible things too numerous to mention. He doubts our Christianity, says we hate America and are part of an effort to “overthrow our way of life.”
In response to Mr. Der Manouel’s misguided beliefs about who I am, let me assure him none of what he says is true. What is true is that our country has become a sharply divided place struggling to find a way to overcome our differences to work for the common good. Instead of doing the difficult work of compromise and civility, many of our leaders and citizens have stooped to name calling and bullying whenever faced with a different opinion than their own.
When our forefathers met to draft the documents which govern our country, they were able to overcome their significant differences and compromise to achieve a common goal. Yet, more than 200 years later, here we are casting our fellow Americans as the enemy and non-Christians because they hold different beliefs.
I challenge Mr. Der Manouel and all Americans to rise above the fractious discourse and find a way to work together for the good of America. That is what someone who loves America does.
Sharon Peterson, Fresno
Message full of hate, deceit
After reading Michael Der Manouel’s July 1 st letter, one truly wonders if he is a product of the Christian nation he so greatly reveres. His letter, full of hate, deceit, and intolerance, is a toxic mix that any person of faith would find troubling, Republican or Democrat.
If Mr. Der Manuel in any way represents the modern-day Christian in America, heaven help us all.
Tom Tyner, Clovis
Almost funny, but really sad
One of the letters in the paper on July 1 from Michael D. caught my eye, especially his reference to our creator. It is almost funny if it wasn’t so sad, considering the fact our siting president is the most amoral person I have ever witnessed. He cheated on his first wife with his second wife, then cheated on her with his third wife, then cheated on her with at least two other women we know of and probably more.
He has told more blatant lies than any former dozen presidents combined. He makes no bones about his disdain for anybody who talks about him. What about his statement, “Mexico is going to pay for the wall” and the one that takes the cake, “I will be too busy to ever play golf like President Obama did” — how’s that going? The other one I see “he is donating his salary,” that’s because he is making a fortune on his stays at his resort in Florida. He has made America the laughingstock of the free world.
If he thinks the women in the Democratic party want to kill babies, he is truly a Trumpster.
Mike Lewis, Fresno
Letter full of histronics
With a Trump impeachment and catastrophic 2020 electoral defeat looming, it is no surprise that another histrionic letter has spilled forth from Mike Der Manouel’s caustic pen.
Der Manouel uncharitably rips Democratic women as atheistic, drug-loving, America-hating baby killers and lambasts them for not staying obedient and presumably in the kitchen.
Not surprising rhetoric from a fanatical supporter of a misogynistic serial groper.
Likewise, he labels as traitors patriotic Democrats who wish to exercise oversight over an eminently unqualified train wreck of a president. A president who disparages our own intelligence agencies as he writes love letters to and dotes on autocratic strong-men dictators.
Christianity to Der Manouel means being impervious to the deaths of innocent children in our border. Concentration camps and championing the Republican party’s distaste for diversity and celebrating its divisive war on people of color and encouraging its penchant for increasingly insidious voter suppression campaigns and its corrupt and unprincipled use of gerrymandering to foment partisan advantage.
He forgets that while we are a Christian nation, that the separation of church and state is a cornerstone of American democracy.
The party that put men like Roy Moore and Trump in office is not where Jesus would reside.
Hector Torres, Clovis
No one is fooled by such a letter
The right-wing absurd message from local GOP hate-monger in The Bee July 1 is blatantly apparent. No one is fooled. He is parroting the “cruelty-at-all-cost” policy of Donald Trump. His message is designed to foster the fear of “they are coming for you” mantra, meaning coming for the Christian right — i.e. whites only — in 2020.
It is also clear that he has never met any Democratic white women like me. I am a cradle Christian and happen to believe that when Jesus Christ said “suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not,” he did not mean put them in overcrowded cages separated from their mothers in squalor and filth.
I am not alone in my disgust. Democratic women are not buying this, and I assert that there are Republican women out there who also reject his brutality.
Patricia Brown, Fresno
Letter was anti-Semitic
I encourage my neighbors to read between the lines of Michael Der Manouel’s letter, “Democrats Detached from Their Creator.” I stand by the First Amendment and The Fresno Bee’s right to print his letter. Der Manouel has the right to his faith and to his political views. And I have the right to my own as well. Yet, it appears that anti-Semitism is alive and well in this one voice in our community.
Our country may have been founded by a diverse group of Christians, but it is not a Christian country. Our country was founded on the belief in the right to free exercise of our faith and that “Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion.” Der Manouel appears to believe otherwise. Those who do not align with his own faith are un-American and immoral. In labeling four legitimately elected American leaders as traitors, all of whom are Jewish, Der Manouel exposes his intolerance and anti-Semitic beliefs about Jews.
Our nation is woven together and made stronger by a tapestry of religious beliefs, ethnic backgrounds and political stances. We should not allow this one individual’s prejudice and chauvinism command influence in Fresno.
Rabbi Laura Novak Winer, Fresno
Fascism the real threat to U.S.
Michael Der Manouel, July 1, demonstrates why fascism, not liberalism, is a growing threat to our democracy.
He makes outrageous claims about Democrats. He claims Democrats hate America, value killing the unborn, legalizing crime, and supporting the use of drugs. He offers no evidence to back his claims.
He thinks he speaks for our founding fathers and Jesus Christ Himself. He thinks he has the authority to speak for all Democratic women and all Republican women. He thinks he is the judge of who is detached from their Creator or not. He thinks this country was founded on only Christian principles. He forgets Americans still have a Bill of Rights, which protects religious freedom. He forgets the concept of separation of church and state implied in the First Amendment. He forgets the words God or Christianity are never used in our constitution. He forgets the Declaration of Independence uses vague terms for the divine, such as God, Supreme Being, Creator, Divine Providence, but never gets specific (Yahweh? Brahma? Jesus? Allah? Holy Ghost?)
Our founding fathers did not declare America a Christian nation! Americans may choose to be Christians or not. Not all Christians are Republicans.
Fascism is America’s greatest threat.
Mike Petrovich, Fresno