MoveOn.org Scandalous

RECEIVED Wed., Jan. 14, 2004

Dear Mr. Black:
   I am a semiregular reader of the Chronicle, and while I rarely agree with your politics, I enjoy the paper. However, I was disappointed that you used a crank letter to avoid dealing with a serious issue last week, i.e., the scandalous Bush = Hitler libel that seems to be standard fare at MoveOn.org ["Page Two," Jan. 9]. If MoveOn were as marginalized as your letter-writer, they wouldn't be worth remarking on. Unfortunately, MoveOn appears to be the current mainstream of the Democratic Party.
   You don't strike me as the kind of guy who believes Bush = Hitler. If not, you owe it to your readers to rein in their political fantasies from time to time rather than reinforcing them while you make fun of a nincompoop.
Greg Wilson
   [Editor replies: Can't we all just leave Hitler alone? I readily agree that almost all the Hitler = whoever comparisons are ridiculous, be it Bush or Saddam Hussein. With Bush, such comparisons are counterproductive – changing no minds, marginalizing legitimate critics, and satisfying only those making them. There are reasonable criticisms of MoveOn.org, but taking them to task over a couple of entries in an open contest that received more than a thousand responses is not legitimate. Attack them on other grounds, but not for this.]
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