"Our tent is big enough for everyone!" is the great claim made by the Republican Party. Though I thought their slogan was just a snappy phrase, I never expected the party to so openly show what is really written on its "welcome mat." Who would have ever suspected that the Republican "tent" would have been too small to include loyal party members who dared to share their opinions without purchasing a $300 booth? I was shocked to learn that loyal Republicans would be threatened, arrested and hauled off in handcuffs by the county sheriffs deputies just for passing out informational fliers and voting records.

Though not a Republican myself, I support all of the things the Republican Party claims to support in its platform. In addition, I believe in the right to share ideas and philosophies at gatherings held in the entranceways of publicly funded facilities like the Salt Palace. I applaud Tom Draschil and Ruth Robinson who, like Rosa Parks, refused to remain powerless and silent in "the back of the bus."This behavior makes me increasingly resent the Republicans and all other political parties. It is an absolute shame that good citizens cannot make a difference or reach the masses without attaching a label to themselves - which often comes at a heavy price, as Utah Republicans have discovered. It is criminal that the Salt Lake County Republican Party expects citizens and candidates to pay $300 for a little table to share their often meager literature at conventions.

Leola Eastburn

Salt Lake City