Personal attacks distract from issues

June 17, 2013 

Once again I'm compelled to respond to the recent barrage of rebuttals from conservative commenters as well as some anonymous mudslingers in Sound-off, and elsewhere, who personalize their slander. Obviously some mistakenly think I'll be intimidated by questioning my integrity, motivation or lineage. But by their own words, these self-appointed character assassins expose their own lack of credibility and integrity.

I'll write to offer opinions on today's issues and with few exceptions will avoid specifically referencing other writers. But unfortunately some with contrary views often twist their remarks into personal attacks. Not only is that classless, but it escalates negative rhetoric. Sadly too many, on both sides, already receive unwelcome contact from anonymous cranks. Why encourage that even more?

I've decided life's too short and today's issues too important to engage in direct public debate with a cadre of amateur economists, backwater sociologists, unapologetic bigots, gun lunatics, folks who employ religion to justify hate, Ayn Rand aficionados and various other opponents of anything liberal. Opening those sealed and poisoned minds is not why I write.

I still believe arguments aren't won by bullies can who scream the loudest; and repeating lies incessantly still won't ever make them true. So I'll speak to issues and facts, and resist the bait to go personal. I'd invite those who honestly wish to address issues to do the same.

If someone wants to write me directly, I'll just insist it not be anonymous. Who knows, some people might find we have more in common than they think.

Kevin J. Gagen

Belleville

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