Valor and empathy go hand in hand
Danny Heitman's Oct. 21 commentary, "Teddy Roosevelt's tips for collegial politics," presents his subject's pre-presidential ideas for achieving common ground in the governance of America. How can we not all agree that Roosevelt's precepts for progress are sorely needed today? Perhaps each of us should be thinking about what we can do individually to practice what the 26th president of the United States spelled out.
Roosevelt is well known for oft repeating the proverb "Speak softly and carry a big stick." So, while he promoted solidarity at home, he wanted America to be known as a powerful player outside its borders. Let's not forget that his 1906 Nobel Peace Prize reflected his accomplishments as a negotiator between nations at war.
We should also remember that he finally received a Medal of Honor in 2001 for heroic actions in the Battle of San Juan Heights in Cuba, which took place in 1898 – prior to writing his thoughts on common ground in the Century Magazine article.
Considering all this, we should recognize that Roosevelt was not just about "fellow-feeling" for the common good. Personal valor and being a strong negotiator can go hand in hand with empathy for all mankind – the world over. His practice of this is an example for all of us to follow.
David K. McClurkin
Ultimate bottom line: saving Earth
Thanks for "Forget Solyndra. Clean energy is hot again" under the "Sustainable, Responsible Investing" feature section in the Oct. 21 issue. The article presents good news, but for more than just investors.
The plummeting cost of installation and rising capacity of wind and solar mean we are on the way to limiting climate disruption. Too bad this connection between renewable energy and curbing climate change was not mentioned in the article.
The ultimate bottom line for efficiency improvement and clean energy is to save the planet, and humanity, from the worst of climate disruption.
William H. Cutler
Palo Alto, Calif.