THE CLIFF-HANGER ELECTION
America should be grateful that this election was as wild as it gets [ELECTION 2000, Nov. 20]. Some of us originally came from places where heads would have rolled during a similar crisis. So far, not a gunshot has been heard on account of the balloting, and you call this "wild"? An election held in Nigeria in 1993 led to the President-elect's being thrown in jail for trying to assume office and ultimately to his mysterious death. Going to court to decide who won this contest is, in my opinion, as civilized as it gets. MAY AKABOGU-COLLINS Vista, Calif.
During the next four years, we should all contact our local election officials and demand that an accurate voting process be put in place. It might be expensive and would probably include massive voter-education drives and an improved ballot design. But in whatever manner our vote is submitted, it must be accurately counted the first time and not be subject to interpretation. BILL WATT Columbus, Ga.
This election is the perfect example of how a democracy should work: all powers in balance. People will remember it in the years ahead and say, "My vote really did count for something." We all have an investment in this country, and it is called citizenship. TOM STUMO Piqua, Ohio
Politicians seeking power, vote recounts, possible injunctions and lawsuits have dominated the news. But if every vote is to have significance, now and in the future, accurate and fair voting procedures are America's only option. RICHARD HAHN Forest Lake, Minn.
This election will go down as the worst in U.S. history--until the next election, which will probably be contested vigorously as well. A benchmark has been set, and politicians will think it is fine to litigate every election in hopes that their lawyers can outfinagle the other party's. Soon we'll just have the lawyers fight it out in court over who the next President is; we won't have to bother voting at all. DAVID M. DANIELS Missouri City, Texas
With all the brains the U.S. has, it can surely produce a system in which each vote is counted quickly and correctly. We should explore a uniform national system in which each state uses the same voting technology. We should be able to produce a system that will accurately reflect the wishes of every voter. GERARD J. GAGNON Leesburg, Fla.
NADER: NOBLE OR NUTTY?
I am an unrepentant Ralph Nader voter [ELECTION 2000, Nov. 20], and I am disgusted by the continued assault on Nader as a person. It is not surprising that the critics have to stoop to attacking his character, because if they bothered to consider the actual content of his message, they would have nothing to say. Once this electoral melodrama has run its course, we will see that Nader was right. No matter who takes office, it will be business as usual. JEREMY RAYMONDJACK Lowell, Mass.
This presidential election was akin to an environmental and social IQ test. But the supposedly environmentally minded Greens most certainly did not pass the test, since they took votes away from Al Gore in Florida. Nader has proved himself to be an utterly irresponsible citizen. I will still vote for the Green Party in the future, but I will never again support Nader. LOUK WIJSEN Alameda, Calif.