In Norma McDonald's letter ("First cut should be congressional pay," Oct. 3), she calls for refusal to pay congressional salaries until the government opens again. Not a bad idea! However, her idea that anyone against Obamacare (such as the tea party) should refuse their Social Security checks or Medicare benefits is not.

How ludicrous! I am 66 years old and have paid into Social Security all my life. Why should I forgo my money because of my objection to a government program? If the government kept its sticky fingers off that money, my check could be three times what it is now.

While many want to blame the Republicans for this shutdown, our "Bob Irsay" president has ignored the basic cornerstone of American politics — compromise. His "my way or the highway" stance has closed the government, not a small number of Republicans in the House.

Wake up, President Barack Obama, we are a democracy, not a dictatorship intent on creating a socialist Muslim society. Hopefully, we can block his desires until his term ends and we can return to an American form of government.

In the meantime, I'll continue to cash the meager check I worked for all my life.

Dan Shannahan, Fullerton