Comment: 'Fiscal cliff' provides obstacle for political coyotes, roadrunners
Wile E. Coyote is seen chasing nemesis The Road Runner at Circus Circus in Las Vegas, Nevada, in January. (Getty Images)
November 8th, 2012
07:22 PM ET

Comment: 'Fiscal cliff' provides obstacle for political coyotes, roadrunners

Editor's note: We regularly highlight thought-provoking comments from CNN's readership and audience. Some posts are edited for length and clarity.

You may recall the old Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies cartoons in which Wile E. Coyote was pursuing the Road Runner. Those ACME products never seemed to do the trick for the poor coyote, who would end up bounding off exaggerated red-rock cliffs and hanging in mid-air. Cartoon physics would eventually bring him down, but he would always survive. FULL POST

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Filed under: Comments
Comments: 'Holding the phone wrong' or 'iMiss Steve Jobs'? Seeds of Apple discontent
Tamsyn Vohradsky holds up her iPhone 5 after becoming the first to get it at a store in Sydney, Australia.
September 21st, 2012
08:20 PM ET

Comments: 'Holding the phone wrong' or 'iMiss Steve Jobs'? Seeds of Apple discontent

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. We're featuring a few of our favorites here. Be sure to participate in the mobile photo challenge on Saturday, September 22,  part of Our Mobile Society.

If you're Apple, there's good news, and there's bad news.

iPhone 5: The wait is over

First, the good news: You sold a bunch of iPhone 5s, and people lined up or ordered online. We received more than 20 iReports from excited customers showing us overnight campouts and people who queued for several days. Veenu Aishwarya of Philadelphia went to an Apple store just to experience the scene.

Veenu: "It was my first such event to witness an iPhone launch at an Apple store. Although, I was not in line for the iPhone, I was equally excited just to see all the smiling faces and the level of energy and enthusiasm among Apple fans."

Some CNN.com readers said they are happy with their Apple products.

Xeres: "My iPhone 5 is waiting for me at home. No waiting in a line needed."

icharliem2: "I'd used Apple products for 30 years. Never had a major problem. A lot of times what you get is more than what you can see. Never heard many people who switched to Apple products say they're bad. Only those who've never owned one. Are they the best in all things ? I don't think so, but their integration of hardware and software is better than anyone else and keeps getting better."

And now, the bad news. We saw quite a bit of backlash among our commenters.

Eddie Francis: "I hope the people in the photo are happier human beings now, seeing they just bought a phone. What an achievement."

What would animals, or aliens, say about us as a species?

AnywhereElse: " 'Humans can be so silly.' –Pigeons worldwide observing the Apple lines"

maxemoose36: " 'Silly ... for me to poop on!' –Triumph (the insult comic dog)"

agent13: "My name is Zoltar from the planet Ux. Upon visiting your lovely planet all the locals told me I should try this Apple, that it was awesome. You were right. It's very delicious, except for the outer case. It tends to get stuck in my teeth."

A debate took place about other companies' products. FULL POST

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Filed under: Apple • Comments • Our Mobile Society • Technology • U.S.
Comments: Some cultural exchange after girls clobber cleric over hijab
Iranian women can be subjected to harsh punishment for small infractions of the country's Islamic dress code.
September 20th, 2012
07:46 PM ET

Comments: Some cultural exchange after girls clobber cleric over hijab

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. Here's a few exchanges we noticed today.

In a small Iranian town, a cleric asked a girl to cover herself more completely. She refused, and then eventually she and a friend double-teamed the man and clobbered him. The man, Hojatoleslam Ali Beheshti, says he asked politely, but ended up in the hospital. He ultimately declined to file a complaint, but said he didn't mind the prosecutor's investigation. This incident has many readers talking.

Girls beat up Iran cleric over dress code

Many readers cheered the girls' reaction, and others wondered what would happen next.

Johnusmc: "You go girls!!"

Superstition: "My thoughts exactly! I'm so happy to finally hear a version of this story that goes the other way. It’s too bad I now have to fear for their safety ..."

There were some theories about the cleric's intentions. FULL POST

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Filed under: Comments • Iran • Religion • World
Comments: Royals, citizens alike juggle division between public, private spheres
Some CNN.com readers say they are concerned about the blurring of their public lives and their private worlds.
September 14th, 2012
08:35 PM ET

Comments: Royals, citizens alike juggle division between public, private spheres

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. Below, you'll see highlighted posts that we noticed.

Heading into the weekend, readers are thinking about the lines between public and private life, and between work and play. There are different stories that give different takes.

The publication of photos showing Kate Middleton, Duchess of Cambridge, topless has got readers wondering how much is too much intrusion into a person's life. The following reader drew a line between this incident and the recent images of Prince Harry in his birthday suit.

Scott Bennett: "The publication of the photos of Katherine while on her holiday with William was not only despicable, but also shows the idiocy of the editorial staff of the 'publication' Closer. When Mlle Pieau described the reaction to the pictures' publication as "disproportionate" and slammed the British press as "complete hypocrites," since photos of Harry naked were published by The Sun, she shows her lack of basic human understanding. The two incidents are not even remotely comparable. 1) Harry was cavorting about in his hotel suite, having invited loads of strangers, thus opening the doors for such potential exposure; William and Katherine were vacationing alone in a private residence (or so they thought); 2) Harry is a single, 20-something man; Katherine is a married woman in her early 30s who will at some point be someone's mother. THEY NEED TO GET A GRIP ON HUMAN DIGNITY and get over their self-centered approach to life and their 'job' already! Disgusting, just disgusting!"

But then, is being naked worth the risk when you're a well-known figure?

Other99Pct: "Um, don't go outside with your shirt off if you don't want people to see you?"

Many people were disturbed by the idea that people are interested in such images. FULL POST

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Filed under: Comments • Technology • United Kingdom
September 12th, 2012
08:29 PM ET

Comments: Deadly Benghazi attack illustrates complexity of Middle East politics

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Readers often post thought-provoking comments about issues in the news, and we like to highlight them when we can.

It has been an eventful week in the Middle East, and readers are talking about a lot of things. Here are three themes that came up:

1. AMBASSADOR KILLED IN ATTACK

A pro-al Qaeda group responsible for a previous armed assault on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi is the chief suspect in Tuesday's attack that killed Chris Stevens, the U.S. ambassador to Libya, sources tracking militant Islamist groups in eastern Libya say.

Pro-al Qaeda group seen behind deadly Benghazi attack

Readers shared their thoughts and theories about connections to al Qaeda, and talked about their views on what should be done about the attack.

CNN's sources note that the attack followed a call from al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri for revenge for the death in June of a senior Libyan member of the terror group Abu Yahya al-Libi. Several commenters on this particular article were eager to see action taken.

JohnRJohnson: "I think, with that phone call, al-Zawahiri has just increased the likelihood that he will soon be vaporized by a missile from out of the blue. Al Qaeda declared war on the United States back in 1998. Since then, I've heard no declarations of peace coming from any of the al Qaeda leadership; therefore they should continue to expect our ongoing efforts to eliminate them from the face of the Earth. Al-Zawahiri is a mental case who gave up being a healer to become a murderer of innocent people. His time will come soon enough."

justice786: "As an American Muslim, I agree with you. Al Qaeda needs to be terminated."

WWWYKI: "Does anybody think trying to make peace with a culture that murders their own daughters in a public setting for the audacity of getting raped is even possible?"

One commenter said they are from Libya and are upset about what happened to Stevens. FULL POST

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Filed under: Comments • Egypt • Libya • Politics • Religion • World
Comments: Hope, inspiration born from tragedy 11 years after 9/11
CNN iReporter Rachel Cauvin shared this photo of twin beams of light shining over New York in honor of 9/11.
September 11th, 2012
07:55 PM ET

Comments: Hope, inspiration born from tragedy 11 years after 9/11

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. What follows is a look at some of the posts we noticed today.

As we look back on the September 11 attacks, the now-traditional twin beams of light seem to draw an 11 in the sky over New York. iReporter Rachel Cauvin shared the above image 11 years since this defining moment in U.S. history. We're hearing from readers on a variety of stories about this day.

Elizabeth and Stephen Alderman wrote an opinion article about their youngest child, Peter, who died on 9/11 at age 25. They established the Peter C. Alderman Foundation in his honor in 2003. We heard from several readers who were touched by the story.

After 9/11, how we honor our son's memory

Some could sadly relate and found hope from the story.

14thetruth: "We suddenly lost our son Bobby yesterday due to a senseless accident. He died a little after 9 a.m. He was 26 and was a wonderful husband, father and son. He leaves behind a wife and three children under 3 years old. Bobby had just started a promising business. Your story is an inspiration for us carry on our son's work in his spirit and honor and a compass to guide us to do good for all. Thank you."

JenLaw: "The family is in my heart and prayers. I also lost a son this year who was in his young 20's. I set up a scholarship in his name and it brings me joy. It is what he would have wanted. It is a wonderful thing you are doing and bless your hearts."

Others said they found inspiration. FULL POST

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Filed under: Comments • September 11 • U.S.
September 10th, 2012
06:08 PM ET

Comments: Union teachers striking when other people can't even find work?

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. Here's some comments we noticed today.

In a tight economy, the sight of striking teachers in Chicago has many readers seeing red. On CNN iReport, we're seeing photos from the picket lines. Should teachers be asking for more when people have less? Sam Chaltain writes in an education opinion piece that the issues in this situation apply well beyond the heartland.

My View: The whole world is watching Chicago, once again

Some readers who posted comments wondered if teachers see themselves as above the standards of other professions, while others wondered how performance should be measured.

Chris: " 'Teachers want job security.' ‚Äď That says it all. Why should teachers get job security while the rest of the working world has to *perform* to achieve job security? And sometimes performance isnt even enough... Sometimes the way a system works is just ineffective, and it takes a dislocation of employees onb the journey to make it right, regardless of how effective those employees are individually. I've seen this happen in the business world- fantastically effective colleagues have lost their positions, and it's broken my heart to watch it happen- but then I've watched the business gets stronger and more effective as a result. 'Job security' is a figment of the past. Get over it, and work to make yourself relevent assuming you lose your job tomorrow."

Shelly: "No one debates accountability and evaluation. It is the terms of what does it mean to be an effective teacher? If we hold teachers accountable to student performance on a standardized assessment given on one day, shouldn't we also hold doctors accountable to patient wellness rate on a checkup day, regardless of if the patient took the advice to lose weight or exercise or take their medications? Shouldn't we blame farmers' poor yields in a drought on the farmers' incompetence? People hate teachers lately. If teaching is such a cake-walk job, please go to college and earn your degree so you can join in!"

daveyoung: "When you work for the taxpayers, you have no right to unionize. End of story."

This commenter applauded the efforts of teachers. CNN iReport is asking educators to share why they teach.

aflarend: "Great job, Chicago Teachers! You are standing up for what is right in the classroom. You know that tests are narrowing the curriculum and that they only measure a small part of what a child learns academically in school. As a graduate of a Chicago Public school in the 1980s and one on the far South Side, I know first hand the challenges that you face. And I know your successes since I earned advanced degrees in engineering, thanks in part to several inspiring teachers. Thank you for all your hard work and dedication. And thank you for standing up for students and teachers."

Some said the schools are poorly managed, and parents need to step up and do their jobs.

Barbra & Jack Donachy: "By and large, Chicago's public schools have been a mess for a very long time as one reform after another has ultimately gone nowhere. Like his friend President Obama, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel seems to be taking a tack that puts too much emphasis on standardized test scores and places too much blame on teachers for the failure many of Chicago's schools. It is frustrating that, like Mr. Obama, the mayor has given up attempts to get to the root of the problems in our education system (horrible leadership from school and district administrators and the school boards that supposedly oversee that leadership) and is instead desperately hacking at the leaves around the fringes of meaningful school reform while pointing a wrongly accusatorial finger at teachers. No company, no team, no military unit, no group of teachers can rise above the level of their leadership for any length of time, and until we make positive changes in terms of getting better superintendents, better principals, and better school boards our public schools will continue to founder.

J: " 'The real problem' are parents, not district administrators, not school boards, and not teachers, when it comes to test scores. Parents are a child's real teacher and most are no where involved in their children's academic life. Stop making excuses that other people are responsible for educating our children. PARENTS PARENTS PARENTS. I am so tired of people making excuses on this subject ‚Äď get involved with your children's education and recognize that you, the parent, are ultimately responsible and you only have yourself to blame."

The main story about the strike got thousands of comments from readers angry about the news. FULL POST

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Filed under: Comments • Economy • Education • Illinois • Taxes • U.S.
September 6th, 2012
02:32 PM ET

Comments: 'Love him or hate him,' but Clinton fires up Democrats at convention

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. Here are some comments we noticed Thursday:

As former President Bill Clinton took to the stage at the Democratic National Convention, readers took to their cameras and keyboards to let us know what they thought about his speech Wednesday night and how the convention is going so far.

Five things we learned from Day Two of the DNC

Clinton has been a controversial figure not only for his politics but for his personal life and resulting impeachment. David P. Kronmiller of Burbank, California, alluded to this past, asking "does he help or hurt Democrats?" and referring to "mixed messages" even as he gave the former president good marks for his words.

"He's an excellent storyteller," Kronmiller said. "He's very good at telling the story of an event in this case, Barack Obama's successes."

And then there's Mark Ivy, a CNN iReporter who says he leans toward Mitt Romney but was keeping an eye on "classic Bill Clinton" on Wednesday night. The Farmersburg, Indiana, resident said that although many people "love (Clinton) or hate him," he also felt that "no one knows how to reach out and touch the common folk better than the man from Hope," or exhibits better skills to "play to the base of the Democratic Party."

"Bill Clinton was vintage Bill Clinton tonight as he formally nominated President Barack Obama to carry the torch for yet another four years for the Democratic National Party. That included the fact that as customary, Bill was not short-winded... ."

Some of the reaction came directly from Charlotte, North Carolina, site of the DNC events. The following two iReporters won a CNN contest to attend the DNC, just as others had gone to the Republican National Convention.

Omekongo Dibinga of Washington noted in his video commentary that he felt the speech was effective despite some controversy surrounding the convention's second day. FULL POST

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Filed under: Barack Obama • Bill Clinton • Comments • Democratic Party • Israel • Politics • Religion
Comments: Have you experienced Warhol's iconic '15 minutes' of fame?
The Campbell Soup Company celebrates the 50th anniversary of Andy Warhol's soup can series with special edition labels.
September 5th, 2012
04:15 PM ET

Comments: Have you experienced Warhol's iconic '15 minutes' of fame?

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. Here's some comments we noticed today.

Andy Warhol once said that "in the future, everybody will be famous for 15 minutes." He's been dead for 25 years, but he's still got his fame. This week, 1.2 million limited-edition cans of condensed tomato soup with Pop-art-inspired labels go on sale to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Warhol's famed art piece "32 Campbell's Soup Cans."

Readers shared their thoughts on the artist's style and got us thinking about our own fleeting moments in the limelight.

Andy Warhol's '15 minutes' of fame are not up yet

One reader described her Warhol-esque decor.

AndreaMilnes: "I love Warhol, and really pop art in general. You should see my apartment, it's a minor explosion of modernism and it happens to feature the Warhol Wall. Fittingly above my TV I have four tinted photos of him, each with a quote, and I freakin love it. The quotes aren't particularly deep (ex: "everybody must have a fantasy") but then I'm not particularly deep either. It's part of the reason I love his work, you don't have to be 6ft up your own rear and up to your eyeballs in meaning to be interesting and produce great art. Art is awesome when it's done merely for the sake of itself. Add in the pop cultural and fashion aspects of Warhol, and it's a recipe for my adoration. So please believe I'll be eating lots of soup for a while, lol!"

Others took a different view.

norcalmojo: "Warhol was the Sid Vicious of the art world. He knew his art was commercial junk and also knew that people would buy anything if they were told it was cool. It was a joke on his own fans. At least Pistols' fans were in on the joke. Warhol fans are still convinced they're sophisticated."

One commenter described the story of Billy Name, a photographer who knew Warhol at the time the artist survived being shot. He described Name's apartment as a "mini Warhol gallery." FULL POST

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Filed under: Advertising • Art • Comments
August 31st, 2012
05:43 PM ET

Comments: Clint Eastwood's 'empty chair' speech roasts Hollywood politics

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. Here, you'll see highlights from some of today's conversation.

It seems like everyone has been talking about Clint Eastwood's surprise speech at the Republican National Convention, during which he addressed an "invisible Barack Obama" sitting in an empty chair. The speech got an interesting reaction and even spawned its own meme, termed "eastwooding." Readers have mixed emotions about the speech, and about Hollywood politics. But for some, Eastwood's words were a refreshing inversion of what they see as Tinseltown's typical perspectives.

Eastwood, the empty chair and the speech everyone's talking about

Two iReporters expressed support for Eastwood. Rick Huffman of St. Joseph, Michigan, shared a video of his own not-so-empty chair with a gun holster at its side and a cowboy hat on top. When asked about the impact of the speech, he gave a simple answer.

"The chair? Not much," he wrote. "His presence? Speaks volumes to the people."

Commenter gapperguy responded to him, "It is only coming under fire by liberals. The Republican base loved it."

Mark Ivy of Farmersburg, Indiana, said Eastwood was "bringing down the house," and he received many supportive comments as well.

k3vsDad: "This is a new side to a man known for his dramatic roles. His timing and comedic take was dead on. Eastwood  had the conventioneers eating out of his hand as he pointed out elected  officials work for the people and the people are the bosses. Eastwood  got loud cheers and applause when remarking it was time to let Obama go  because he wasn't doing the job."

FULL POST

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Filed under: Barack Obama • Comments • Politics • Republican Party
August 30th, 2012
03:05 PM ET

Comments: 'Who at this stage hasn't figured out who they want to vote for?'

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. Here are some comments from Thursday.

As the Republican National Convention nears its end in Tampa, Florida, readers are buzzing about politics. Conversation about Rep. Paul Ryan, the Republican vice presidential candidate, has been dominating the site after his prime-time speech Wednesday night. Readers talked about what impact Ryan might have on undecided voters and speculated about how many people are having trouble making a decision.

Ryan's speech gives undecided voters mild nudge toward Romney

Many readers opposed Ryan's speech, questioning some of his comments, while others said listeners should give the candidates a chance. CNN published a fact check about a portion of the presentation afterward.

Cedric: "In other words, Ryan's speech full of outright lies failed to move the needle. It is easy to deliver a good speech when you can make up the facts to support your narrative."

jp2123: "I don't understand why people don't even try to listen to the points the candidates make. Just because they are not Democrats? Seriously, I'm independent, leaning toward (Mitt) Romney after listening to some of the speeches (even though I'm waiting for Romney's speech). But people complaining about Romney cutting taxes for the wealthy and increasing taxes on the middle class? When did he say this? I have yet to hear them say, or have any indication that that's what he is planning on doing. Wish people were more concerned about the candidates and the issues than on the political parties. Take it as it is, and stop judging someone just because the ones that came before him did something. Listen to both candidates, and their ideology and their idea of America. And vote for who represents you the best, not based on the media or popularity. I think the scariest thing is that I know so many young and adult people who will vote for (President Barack) Obama without taking a look at Romney just because Obama is the popular one, and is painted in the media as the good guy and Republicans as the bad guys."

Is anyone even undecided at this point?

Hyco: "Undecided voters? Really? Who at this stage hasn't figured out who they want to vote for? They either care nothing about the election or have an IQ around 75 and have problems deciding which hand is best to eat with."

Some readers took jabs at teleprompter usage during the convention.

Spikel1: "It's funny for all the talk of Obama's teleprompters, they've been getting much usage at the convention."

Mara Tam: "Amen! So far no media types mentioned this. All of them using them evil machines!"

killingly: "Well the orator in chief shouldn't need them by now."

Do you vote for a particular candidate or simply against another? FULL POST

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Filed under: Comments • Politics • Republican Party
Comments: Readers mostly avoid politics, wish best for Specter's cancer fight
Former Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania has overcome serious illnesses in the past two decades.
August 28th, 2012
07:09 PM ET

Comments: Readers mostly avoid politics, wish best for Specter's cancer fight

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. Here's some comments we noticed today.

As the Republican National Convention moves forward, politically charged comments flow like water. Readers called for a few tidbits of unity on the story about Arlen Specter's fight against cancer. Specter, 82, was the longest-serving senator from Pennsylvania and switched from being a longtime GOP member to the Democratic Party in 2009.

Ex-Sen. Specter plans to win fight against cancer

Readers mused about Specter's political history in the current divided climate. Several commenters thanked Specter.

Hottampa: "Thank you Arlen Spector for the service for your country. I hope you recover. If you do not, you lived a long productive life that most people envy."

iBod: "It's odd, because I was just thinking about him yesterday - wondering how he is spending his time away from the Senate; how he is doing, overall. Dearly saddened to hear this. I am sure this news is hitting all of us Pennsylvanians pretty hard. My thoughts and prayers go out to him and that he makes a full recovery."

PeteArk: "He is a man of moderate views and a love of country ... unlike many of those now in the political arena ..."

Push politics aside for a moment, this reader pleaded.

VelveteenLdy: "It is, at once, amazing and disgusting that almost everything in the news today can be turned into a political battlefield. The purpose of these posts is not to argue Sen. Specter's politics, but to comment on the article. The man is dying. His political affiliation, actions, or whether he was liked or disliked are immaterial and inconsequential to that fact. My thoughts and prayers go to Sen. Specter's family and I pray that he passes on in comfort and in peace."

Many of the readers claimed to be Pennsylvanians, and gave a local perspective. FULL POST

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Filed under: Comments • Health • Politics
Comments: 'Thank you Apple for confirming that you invented the rectangle'
A shop manager in South Korea shows Samsung Electronics' Galaxy S mobile phone, right, and Apple's iPhone 3G.
August 24th, 2012
09:59 PM ET

Comments: 'Thank you Apple for confirming that you invented the rectangle'

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. Here's some comments we noticed today.

Apple and Samsung have been involved in a long battle over the design of Samsung devices that Apple says were "ripped off" from iPads and iPhones. Samsung also countersued Apple for infringing on some of its patents. After a federal jury in California recommended Friday that Apple be awarded more than $1 billion in damages, readers are talking about patents and the ways people define product designs.

Jury: Samsung should pay Apple more than $1 billion

Many readers were outraged, saying Apple's suit appeared malicious.

Jerad Howell: "What a ridiculous verdict. There are only so many ways you can design a touchscreen device. Apparently, this jury believes that Apple should be allowed to have a monopoly on touchscreen tablets and phones."

ogive17: "Apple's new motto 'litigate, not innovate.' Yes, I wanted Apple to lose."

Stnley Kubrick: "This sucks. Sanity once again defeated."

But some said there were some obvious design similarities.

TheH0LYT0AST: "For the life of me I don't understand how anyone can look at the picture at the top of this article and say, 'What? I don't see anything wrong with that.' "

Clint4CNN: "GOOD! Samsung is a thief, and they got caught!"

Nicholas Bloom: "Like Apple needs the money. They charge an arm and a leg for their products. Fair is fair, though."

Some made jabs at the U.S. patenting system. FULL POST

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Filed under: Apple • Business • Comments • Technology • U.S.
August 23rd, 2012
06:24 PM ET

Comments: Time for another Civil War? Or not? Readers debate disagreement

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. Here's some comments we noticed today.

The Civil War we read about in U.S. history books took place in the 1860s, but even today people are talking about the possibility of it happening again. A Lubbock County, Texas, judge named Tom Head stirred up controversy when he said the United States would enter such a civil war if Obama were re-elected. Texas Democrats are calling for his resignation. The story got more than 17,000 comments about political boundaries, and about what it means to disagree and fight.

Texas Democrats: Judge who said Obama could trigger civil war should resign

Does it matter who is president? (Putting aside views about what constitutes a "good president" for a moment.)

Picturamadoj: "If we didn't have a Civil War when Bush was in office, why would anyone think we'd have a Civil War with a good president like Obama?"

bhartman36: "We had a civil war when Abraham Lincoln was in office, too. The quality of the president has nothing to do with whether or not there's civil war."

Some readers griped about Republicans.

kkhjlh: "Talk about extreme politics. Does the Republican party really endorse this garbage? And they want to run the country."

But some blamed the president.

Jakerman: "Proof of how Obama has divided the country? Read the posts on here."

And a few others said maybe secession isn't such a bad idea.

RubinL: "So secede already! This time, not only won't we try to stop you, we'll even help you pack."

What do you think? Does the judge's commentary matter? Share your opinion in the comments area below and in the latest stories on CNN.com. Or sound off on video via CNN iReport.

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

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Filed under: Comments • Politics • U.S.
Comments: Why should rapist have access to child they made?
August 22nd, 2012
08:37 PM ET

Comments: Why should rapist have access to child they made?

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. Here's a look at what readers are saying.

Chicago lawyer Shauna Prewitt wrote an opinion article for CNN.com detailing how she was raped in college and went on to not only have the resulting child, but fight laws allowing the fathers in these cases to seek "the same custody and visitation rights to their children that other fathers enjoy." The story comes after U.S. Rep. Todd Akin's controversial remarks about "legitimate rape" and abortion. Judging by the comments, it left a lot of readers examining their views.

Raped, pregnant and ordeal not over

Several male readers wrote in to say they gained a new perspective from the story.

holycow69: "Thank you for the courage to speak up. You taught me things I was not aware of, because as a man I don't have to ever think about these ramifications. My wife was raped nearly 20 years ago, devastating for my family. Her father's only comment was, 'You shouldn't dress so provocatively.' I wanted to rip his head off, but yelled at him that 'rape is rape, and she didn't ask for it.' No woman , no person, no one should ever have to endure that crap. Time for men to grow up and defend women's rights, not subjugate them. Time for real men to step forward. My question to Republicans is this, 'Are you man enough?' "

The subject was dumbfounding for some.

Guest: "As a man, I have an odd point of view of rape. I have never been exposed to it personally, nor would I ever consider committing it. I don't live in fear of it. It's such a heinous crime that I don't want to think about it. Mind you, as a human being, I have compassion for the victims of rape, but I acknowledge that I will always have a kind of ignorance towards the subject, as it is unfathomable to me how a human being could disrespect and hurt another human like that. I think Akin is not a monster. He is ignorant. He deserves forgiveness for his ignorance. But I hope NO voter would ever want someone that ignorant to speak for them."

Many thanked Prewitt. FULL POST

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Filed under: Comments • Crime • Justice
August 20th, 2012
07:53 PM ET

Comments: Akin's 'legitimate rape' remark draws ire across political spectrum

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. What follows is a look at some of the most talked-about stories of the day.

Rep. Todd Akin, a Republican Senate candidate from Missouri, caused a firestorm of controversy because of his remarks about "legitimate rape" and opposing abortion in rape cases. Akin has since apologized, but readers of all political persuasions seemed mostly unified in opposition to Akin's remarks; they tended to differ much more when talking about what those words actually mean politically.

Akin remarks put abortion at center of campaign debate

Mark Ivy, who describes himself as an independent who plans to vote for Mitt Romney, said he believes Akin should bow out of his senatorial race.

"We need people who can judge what is fact from fiction, no matter one's personal ideology," he said via e-mail. "We need people who can tell that if it is raining you take an umbrella when you go out."

His CNN iReport video commentary riffed off Missouri's oft-debated "Show Me State" nickname, which the Missouri Secretary of State website defines as the "stalwart, conservative, noncredulous character of Missourians." His strong stance attracted several commenters, including CKThompson, below.

k3vsdad: "While many are seeing this as a discussion on abortion, to me it is rather a question of judgment and common sense. The congressman, who is standing his ground and vowing to stay in the race, is to me a failure on two very important concerns that voters in the Show Me State should be focusing.
"Show me good judgment – Akin in his remarks fails on this.
"Show me common sense – Akin fails on this as well."

CKThompson: "There is no defending his statement in this case ... it was completely absurd. But to eliminate him as a viable candidate because of an absurd statement is, in itself, absurd. As I said on another iReport, if we eliminated every politician who said something stupid during a campaign, every capitol and statehouse would be empty."

But then we found Ivy becoming the commenter on another video commentary iReport from Egberto Willies of Kingwood, Texas. Willies said he believes many evangelicals are "comfortable with" Akin's views, and added that he also sees a "war against women" welling up in portions of the Republican Party.

"Akin's comments were backward, offensive, and showed a complete disregard for women," Willies said. That got a response from several commenters, including Ivy. FULL POST

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Filed under: Abortion • Comments • Gender • Missouri • Politics • U.S.
Comments: 'When we were Chinese, we were behind Americans ... I guess I can't win'
A new survey projects Singapore will be home to the wealthiest citizens in 2050.
August 17th, 2012
03:35 PM ET

Comments: 'When we were Chinese, we were behind Americans ... I guess I can't win'

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. What follows is a look at some of the most talked-about stories of the day.

They say money makes the world go 'round, but what happens when money goes around the world? Readers weighed in on a report about Knight Frank and Citi Private Wealth's 2012 Wealth Report. The "rich list" postulates that Asia will host four out of five of the world's wealthiest economies by 2050. Comments indicate that residents of the fifth-ranked country, the United States, are probably not alone in pondering their place in the world.

World's rich list shows emerging Asian century

We heard from a lot of readers who said they were skeptical about making assumptions about the future. The following commenter says the grass is always greener somewhere else.

CWhatsNew: "OK. My husband and I both studied English very hard, got Ph.Ds, struggled out of China 25 years ago, (pulled ourselves up by our bootstraps), and made successful careers and our American Dream. Before we wake up from the sweetness of (taking pride in) ourselves, our kids need to turn the dream around to study Chinese and go establish a Chinese Dream? Ahyaya! So when we were Chinese, we were behind Americans. When we are Americans, we are behind the Chinese. I guess I can't win."

chromebus: "Your sentiments ... are exactly the same as many American Koreans. South Koreans have a negative term for American Koreans who came to the U.S. after the Korean War for a better life because unbeknownst to anyone, South Korea became a powerhouse and land prices rose like crazy, thereby creating incredible equity for many. It's the American Koreans who, er ... came out poorer. But! Life is also about purpose, eh? Don't feel bad!"

Aki Charles Saito: "Don't worry, most of us will be no longer alive by that time when most of West is in bottom and most of East is up."

The original poster returned to respond to the chain. FULL POST

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Filed under: China • Comments • Singapore • U.S. • Wisconsin • World
Comments: Hunka' hunka' burning love for Elvis endures 35 years after his death
Richard Nixon and Elvis Presley had a historic meeting on December 21, 1970.
August 16th, 2012
07:24 PM ET

Comments: Hunka' hunka' burning love for Elvis endures 35 years after his death

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. What follows is a look at some of the most talked-about stories of the day.

Sometimes readers ask about our stories. Today, a reader commenting on a story about a man accused of faking his own death happened to mention the 35th anniversary of Elvis Presley's death.

"How do they decide what article gets to be the top story? Today is the day Elvis died. Lisa Marie and Priscilla greeted the fans at Graceland today. Now this is not a lead story either but it's not even a story to CNN. I don't know ... sorry to complain."

Thanks for your comment, Guest. CNN affiliate WMC covered the Graceland event, and that story was put up on the entertainment page. If you really want to travel back in time, CNN iReport received numerous photos and videos about Presley in honor of what would have been Presley's 75th birthday in 2010.

But those aren't the only places you'll find Elvis on CNN.com. People have been talking about Presley all over the place.

Remembering the King: When Nixon met Elvis

The photo at the top recalls the 1970 meeting between Richard Nixon and Presley. The CNN Political Ticker took a look at the historic convergence. Here's what one reader had to say:

myviewis: "I like this part because it's 2012 and we are still having this problem with the flag losing respect and the country. Presley was adamant that he 'wanted to be helpful' and that he wanted to 'restore some respect for the flag which was being lost.' "

Meanwhile, reader Sniffit theorized that "Elvis is hiding in a trailer in Area 51" with various items and people. Hard to say for sure. There are plans in place to put together an Elvis hologram.

Yet another place you might find Elvis - granted, not a Presley - is at border crossings. FULL POST

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Filed under: Celebrity • Comments • Music • Politics • Showbiz
August 15th, 2012
09:01 PM ET

Comments: How will change to immigration policy affect 'slices of the American pie'?

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. What follows is a look at some of the most talked-about stories of the day.

People are talking about immigration today, but they're also interested in letters and numbers and science.

  1. Immigration program
  2. Scrabble cheating
  3. Why people play the lottery
  4. Hypersonic test fails
  5. Mohawk guys and office goths

1. Program providing protection for young immigrants launched

An executive order by President Barack Obama allows those who entered the country illegally as children to remain and work without fear of deportation for at least two years. The policy has proven controversial, and readers are debating the implications on the United States as well as the people who are applying.

One of the biggest concerns is whether the program in effect condones illegal immigration.

nothingleft: "I think the bigger question is how does someone who has been here illegally for 15+ years not get flagged either from the schools, jobs, social services or driver's license? It's places like these where reform has to start. Life flows in the path of least resistance and if it is easier to come illegally then that is the route people will take."

Some readers said the best way to fight illegal immigration is to make it easier for people to become legal.

Brational2: "If you are bothered by the idea, or the reality, that some of the taxes you pay as a legal immigrant, or as a citizen, are used to provide government services to illegal immigrants, there's a way to end that. Make them legal."

Do they owe society money?

joeblow9999: "Are these illegals going to pay back taxes on the free ride they got from taxpayers paying for their primary education? Most of their parents never paid tax other than sales tax. Wouldn't it be great to go through life never having to pay income tax while you make minimum wage and have the taxpayers pay tens of thousands of dollars to educate your kids?"

Think about our history, many readers said.

Guest12234: "The Pilgrims were illegal aliens. Their children, their children's children, their children's children's children, their children's children's children's children need to be shipped back from whence they came. It's just typical of the GOP and their ilk. They're OK with drawing a line of morality that suits their need. If you want to send back all illegal aliens to this country, let's go back several centuries. I'm willing to bet if the Indians were left to their own devices, our planet would not be in the shape it's in."

But is the United States being stretched too thin?

Mortarfire: "Great. The slices of the American pie are already so thin you can see through them. The 'land of opportunity' is out of opportunities. There are other countries, why does this one have to be the only one that people want to live in? Go fix your own!"

Or are people just too selfish?

myopinionz1: "What is wrong with people nowadays? Have we become so inhumane that we are mad at a mother who fled a cartel nation ... to come to a place they think is safe for their children. Humanity is going down the tubes. There was a time when Americans were looked to as the pinnacle of society, humanity, peace and hope."

Many readers said they want there to be consequences for entering the country illegally. FULL POST

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Filed under: Barack Obama • Comments • Immigration • Politics • U.S.
Comments: Remembering 'Horshack' actor, adding 'f-bomb' to dictionary
"Welcome Back, Kotter" fans are mourning the loss of Ron Palillo, who died of a heart attack Tuesday at 63.
August 14th, 2012
09:44 PM ET

Comments: Remembering 'Horshack' actor, adding 'f-bomb' to dictionary

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. What follows is a look at some of the most talked-about stories of the day.

Today we're hearing about a wide variety of things on CNN.com, including coffeemaking techniques and python management. We're highlighting a few stories today with comments that caught our eyes.

1. Remembering 'Horshack'
2. Hypersonic test flight
3. Lost my kid in public
4. Jennifer Aniston
5. 'F-bomb' and other words

1. Ron Palillo, TV's 'Horshack,' dead at 63

Horshack was a beloved persona from "Welcome Back Kotter." Readers are mourning Ron Palillo, who played the 1970s TV character. For some, it's a generation thing.

Irv Kaage: "A sad day for all Sweathogs and a day that makes us all feel a little older."

Horshack paved the way for others who would dare to act like high school students, says this person.

SuthunYankee: "Hello. How are you? MY NAME is ARNOLD HORSHACK! He had many imitators: Urkel, Screech, etc. ... But Horshack was the best. R.I.P."

Or, more specifically ...

Maverick2591: "He was one of the first television nerds who made being a nerd cool. Everything else is superfluous ... Ron was decent and passionate, and he will be missed."

We heard from a couple of people who had gotten to meet Palillo, including one person who says they work at the G-Star School for the Arts in West Palm Beach, Florida. Palillo taught acting at the charter high school. FULL POST

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Filed under: Celebrity • Comments • Showbiz • TV
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