Book stirs demand, controversy
September 7, 2004
An unidentified man claimed Borders Bookstore in north Douglas County was not carrying hardcover copies of “Unfit for Command: Swift Boat Veterans Speak Out Against John Kerry” for political reasons.
On Saturday, the man demanded to speak to a manager and felt it was an important selection for readers before the upcoming election between Democratic nominee Kerry and Republican incumbent George W. Bush.
The man, who was not identified, said he would bring up the issue during a meeting with Republican brethren that night.
Stacy Elliott, a Borders’ sales manager, assisted the man.
“It’s definitely a hot topic before this election year,” she said.
The uproar caused Borders to release a statement to customers on political books.
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“We do not practice preferential treatment to authors based upon the author’s political views,” the statement read. “We simply carry and market all titles (we) feel our customers will buy.”
The book was co-authored by John O’Neill and Jerome Corsi, two leaders of a group of Swift Boat veterans who aired controversial commercials attacking Kerry’s war record in Vietnam.
The amount of books released was typical for a first printing, Stroschein said. It was enough to be cautious and to possibly stoke demand. He likened it to the initial limited supply of Chrysler’s PT Cruiser that was soon dwarfed by a booming demand of other cars.
Neighbors Books store placed their order last month but copies finally arrived last week. Four copies remained and were displayed at the front counter, wedged between Bill Clinton’s memoir “My Life” and “The South Beach Diet” by Arthur Agatston.