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Regarding Gene Altshuler and his May 14 column, “Never argue with a bigot or an ideologue”:
As any first-year student of philosophy will attest, it is simply fatuous to deny that all of us have beliefs and ideals that shape the way that we think and act, especially with respect to political and religious beliefs. When a person denies that he has an ideology or that he is a bigot of at least some stripe it simply means that he rules out the doctrines of anyone except himself.
Radical columnists like left-leaning Altshuler, or his counterparts on the right, simply contribute to our collective dysfunction. Respectful and objective communications enable us to gather the best solutions from both sides of the political and religious aisles. Therein lays our salvation in every respect. Denigration of others is the enemy of societal progress.
Our innate self-protection lays in our ability to discriminate between radicals and fair and objective purveyors of information. In order to sustain our sovereignty we need to exercise that discrimination with our wallets and our ballots. Do we really need the clearly biased opinion of any radical columnists to fulfill our responsibilities to preserve freedom or should we rest in the comfortable belief that only the other people are ideologues and bigots not us.