Well, maybe it was not the letter as much as it was the envelope. It seems an angry constituent mailed a letter of complaint to the Ohio Congressman in an envelope marked "critical information" and "requested information" on the outside, while at the same time omitting a return address. See the article here.
I think the man or woman who sent the letter without a return address may have hit on a great idea without realizing it. I will give the idea some serious thought before acting if I decide to do so at all. If I decide to take some action on this, I will begin a letter writing campaign to my elected Congressmen/women, maybe even to the Senators of all 50 states. Each letter I write will be sent in an envelope marked something to the effect of: Read Immediately & Response Required & Tea Party Supporter on the envelope and, of course, I will omit my return address from the envelope (but probably not from the actual letter it carries). By the way, my letter will express my concerns that we are becoming a socialized nation and that such things as the health care reform bill are unconstitutional. It will be quite proper and respectful (at least with all due respect) but it will insist that Congress and the president start representing We The people instead of trying to rule us as if we were their subjects instead of their employers!
Would my doing such be illegal? I do not think it is illegal to send letters without a return address.
What would the effect be? Would I be denounced? Would I be investigated? Would the cops or FBI check every letter I sent in this fashion? Would some moronic politician demand that I stop doing such or that I be arrested to stop me? Would a less than sharp politician say something to the effect that I am overstepping my Constitutional rights and liberties?
What would be the media coverage? Think of it, a good number of Congressional representatives and senators receiving such letters - pretty much all at the same time - would it cause a stir? Would there be a massive over reaction by both politicians, law enforcement and the media or would my letters, sent in such a manner, actually be taken for what they actually would be - correspondence from a citizen of the United States of America to elected government officials?
I may have to give this a try. It certainly seems like it could be one way to make certain that politicians pay attention to letters I have sent them. After all, with all the media attention it could potentially spark, wouldn't it be likely that at least one journalist with half a brain would ask the question: "So Senator Schumer (I use him as an example because he is the senior senator for my state), what exactly was it that was in the letter(s)?"
Now imagine it on a larger scale. What would happen if a few hundred or even a few thousand people did this all at about the same time? Would the media be all over it. Would there be an attempt at by the government to officially put an end to such mailings? Would the socialist and communist tendencies of our current administration be brought fully into the light? Would politicians actually start reading our letters and paying attention to the content. Would our message be more likely to get across.
I think I will give it a try. What do you think?
All the best,
04/02/2010 at 2150, edited to add: I guess a return address is not mandatory nor is it a legal requirement on your mail. I say this because I just checked this page at the U.S. Postal Service site and as you can see for yourself they recommend using a return address so if your mail is undeliverable it can be returned to you. They do not say it is mandatory.
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