Regarding Leonard Pitts' March 24 column, "Ask the Dixie Chicks: No dissent allowed on our path to isolation":
He implies the trouble the Dixie Chicks are in is due to "principled dissent" to the war. I don't think they would have gotten into hot water if they had said, "We are opposed to war in Iraq."
That is not what they said. They said, "We're ashamed the president of the United States is from Texas." That goes a bit further than principled dissent. Add to this the fact that they did not make this statement to an American audience. They said this during an overseas tour.
Later they posted on their Web site a statement by Natalie Maines which said, "I apologize to President Bush because my remark was disrespectful."
One has to wonder if they made the first statement to help sales overseas, or if they made the second statement to help sales at home.
In either case, they have the right to say what they want. That is freedom of expression. If Dixie Chicks' sales went up after their anti-Bush statement, the conclusion would be that people supported their opinion. I don't think Mr. Pitts would have a problem with that.
However when their sales go down and the inference is that people do not support their anti-Bush stances, Mr. Pitts cries foul. Mr. Pitts should know that I have the right to buy whatever I want. That is called freedom of expression.
Eric Treesh, Hephzibah, Ga.
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