Attorney General Ashcroft accuses his critics of scaring “peace-loving people with phantoms of lost liberty,” adding that their “tactics only aid terrorists."
So, it’s the old “If ain’t for us, you’re against us” sophistry again. Patriotism, we’re intended to believe, doesn’t allow scrutiny of government action in times of war.
As Mr. Ashcroft well knows: a free society encourages dissent. Vulgar generalizations like his not only oversimplify the concept of patriotism, they’re also no more than ad hominem attacks—hardly the tactic of anyone truly interested in winning adherents to his cause. Let’s hear some response to criticism, Sir, not pathetic attempts to shame your critics into submission.
It's this breezy anti-intellectualism at the highest levels of our government that frightens me.
Robert S. Charlotte, NC
Would love to see that published, but I suspect the Times was flooded with similar angry letters.
I confess, I'm an Edward Hopper fan. Guess he suits my moody post-existentialist worldview. Someone once told me my writing read like an Edward Hopper painting and I decided to be flattered. Weird, huh? I knew what they meant. I only hope I can truly emulate the compliment and become the Edward Hopper of letters one day.