Arthur Saginian | Conversion Therapy for Activists

Letters to the Editor
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The thing I find most frustrating when reading columns written by political partisans and activists (liberal or conservative) is how they usually begin by identifying a problem and fairly accurately pointing out its cause(s), which always includes blaming the other side, but then slip almost predictably into Alice’s Wonderland when presenting the solution(s).

Jonathan Kraut once again started (Feb. 15) by painting a beautiful portrait illustrating the noticeably increased levels of hate and violence in contemporary protests. His brush strokes hit both sides of the protest scene, left and right. Magnificent! He focused his brush on the media as the prime antagonist. Breathtaking! OMG…can this be sustained? Oh, noooo…it was inevitable. The sentence right after blaming the media reveals the sheer predictability of an activist. The “media” consists of social media, and…drum roll… “conservative talk shows, cable and podcasts, pushing people to the edge by design.”  

As if liberal talk shows, cable and podcasts play no role whatsoever in pushing people to the edge by design. To Kraut, conservatives are demons and liberals are angels, to be hyperbolic about it. I see it as an incurable affliction. He simply can’t help himself. “Conversion Therapy” might help, but we’d probably end up with another activist, just going in the opposite direction.

Kraut concludes by “wishing us peace and calmness as we resolve our differences together.” Noble, Mr. Kraut, very noble. Now that’s an activist who “takes the high road” if there ever was one. I usually serve sarcasm with my hyperbole — it makes for a more balanced diet, and I find it far more appetizing than the absurdity that’s been served to me. Does Kraut even know what he’s dealing with here? Please recall what Gene Wilder told Cleavon Little in the 1974 movie Blazing Saddles: “You gotta remember that these are just simple farmers. These are people of the land, the common clay of the new west. You know: morons.”

All of this reminds me of something I once heard regarding men and women. The saying goes like this: Men are stupid and women are crazy, but women are crazy because men are stupid. I added my own corollary to that: At their worst men are brutal, but women are hysterical. With a man you’ll get a punch to the face, but with a woman you’ll get mind games and head trips. I think it’s because most women can’t land a good right hook, but which would you prefer? I myself would prefer a punch to the face. You know where it’s coming from. 

In that sense I see Fox news as a “man” and CNN as a “woman.” The one is blunt and direct while the other is passive-aggressive. So binary. That’s also how I see conservatives and liberals, respectively. Not that I “respect” either of them, though. 

Arthur Saginian

Santa Clarita

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