From The Readers

Reflections On President Gerald R. Ford

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Compiled by washingtonpost.com
Friday, December 29, 2006; 10:29 AM

The following reader comments have been compiled from recent articles about President Ford.

"Of course President Ford would strongly disagree with the policies of this administration. Ford was an honorable man, a man of integrity. A man who spoke only truth to the American people, and did the right thing in binding the nations wounds post Vietnam and Watergate -- the right man at the right time in history. A small tribute, but you leave this world with my thanks for your presence and a job well done. Thank you Mr. President." -- By slim

"News is news, so I don't find the printing of this article to be in poor taste. In addition to a former president stating his views about a current war, what also makes this newsworthy has to do with the Cheney, Rumsfeld and Kissinger connections to both Ford and Bush II. Very intriguing is a decision by a nonagenarian former prez to keep his views on the Iraq war silenced until his death. Such party loyalty is questionable in light of the tremendous prices being paid for wars. His views on the current war would have been news and, as already noted, would have brought him much stressful attention from the media; however, such are the costs of having sat in the planet's biggest power seat." -- By pkpdc

"For the nation and for the world, President Ford not only made sound and courageous decisions, but oftentimes offered inspiring and far-sight advices emitting his own wisdom. He would be remembered for the years to come as an admirable leader with honesty, integrity, and a practical keen mind full of genuine warmth to everybody." -- By yylin

"Ford's wisdom continues even after his death. I wonder why Bush did not consult with him before making the decision to invade and occupy Iraq? Ford's experience in Vietnam was a perfect parallel to what Bush was about to do. He could have gained some valuable insights." -- By cdierd

"Mr. Ford was a stand-up guy. Someone about whom the phrase a lawyer and a gentleman was not an oxymoron. He had all the power of the president. He used it sparingly, with knowledge of its limits as well as its reach. Mr. Ford wisely healed and brought us together -- probably at the cost of his re-election -- and began reforging constructive relationships that were badly mauled by Mr. Nixon's arrogance." -- By dpklln

"Gerald Ford was a president who did what was right even when others didn't approve of it. He did not go into politics to be a politician; he went to be a public servant. While some may remember him as a President who didn't do much, many inside the beltway will regard him as the Leader who did not make decisions based on what others told him, but on what he felt was best for the country he loved." -- By drew.spence

"Gerald Ford was a decent enough guy who thought he was doing the right thing by bringing the country closure on Watergate by issuing a blanket pardon of Nixon. Since the whole point of the impeachment hearings had been to show the nation and the world that no one is above the law, this was a grave mistake. I count myself among those who never forgave him for that. That said, the Fords were a breath of fresh air in the White House, bringing dignity without arrogance in stark contrast to his predecessor." -- By greenew

"Gerald Ford was the finest Republican president of my lifetime because he and he alone put the country and its people first. But more than that, he was a fine man. He deserved so much better than he got. A definite class act." -- By Riain

"Had Ford kept to his original plan and allowed time for formal charges to be lodged against Nixon, spelling out the specifics of his culpability, it would have been up to Nixon to either accept the pardon or fight the charges in court. But pardoning Nixon without requiring at least an acknowledgment of responsibility for serious misconduct and for lying to the public left the door open for the spate of revisionist books and articles that followed the resignation. It would also have had a salutary influence on ideologists at the time and to follow." -- By Jeff-for-progress

"This revelation does nothing to detract from the Ford presidency in my mind. So Ford was guilty of friendship? To ascribe his actions to that of a political hack does not make sense to me. If it was to protect the club or the party or to curry favors in D.C., then it failed miserably. He clearly lost the election due to it. I remember the jabs, the jokes, the distain leveled at President Ford after the pardon once Nixon resigned. If Ford was such a dishonorable man, he could have let the prosecution of Nixon commence, but he showed loyalty to a friend -- a trait too often missing in this world today. Rest in peace and I am sorry he is dead." -- By vwilliams1st


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