The surest sign that you don’t have a good argument is when you simply name-call your opponent instead of engaging in the argument.
Some people who respond to my letters do try and engage my arguments and make counter-arguments. I often find them wanting, but at least they’re on the right track.
But many who respond, especially in the literary garbage pile that is the comments section, simply dismiss my arguments by calling me names, or claiming that my arguments come from Fox News or the president and must therefore, prima facie, by dismissed.
That is not only intellectually lazy and pathetic, but really does my detractors more harm than good.
Now, I admit that as a conflicted supporter of Trump, I may not be exactly on solid ground, since he is the commander-in-chief of trolls and regularly employs name-calling to attack his enemies. In general, I abhor such behavior by politicians, especially the president.
If you recall, George W. Bush was extremely reticent to even politely criticize his rivals while in office. He was and is a polite and gracious man, though that didn’t stop Democrats from calling him everything but a child of God.
And that gets me to my point about Trump. Democrats, liberals and leftists: Trump is what you get when YOU coarsen the national dialogue with your constant stream of personal attacks, straw-men arguments, and righteous denunciations of your opponents.
Gone is the day when we assumed each others’ best motives and could agree to disagree. As the Democrats have moved further left, their willingness to acknowledge the value and worth of their political opponents has diminished to the point where almost all they do is name-call, exaggerate, and lie.
And so our side can’t put up a Mitt Romney or Jeb Bush or some other polite, distinguished person to represent us. Such people get eviscerated by the anger machine of the left.
So, instead you get a Trump.
So next time to want to lay in to me or him and select a choice grouping of tasty epithets and swear words, just remember: the more you do so, the more you empower the Trumps of this world.
You are the cause of your own downfall, in this important respect.
So how about engaging the arguments, talking about the facts, and assuming —if only for show’s sake — that your ideological opponent might just be a decent human being like yourself?
Peachtree City, Ga.