Near the end of Glenn Beaton’s column “Two Reasons why the left hates America,” he says of leftists: “… don’t persuade them with facts and logic.” (Nov. 30, aspentimes.com). Well, Mr. Beaton has certainly taken his own advice.
The column starts with a statement of fact, including that “32% of Democrats and 23% of self-described liberals” agree with 74% of Republicans that they are “extremely proud to be Americans.” He then uses that data as springboard to ask “Why does the left hate America?”
Not being ‘extremely proud” of any thing is not the same as “hating” that thing. Even if it were, by the very data Mr. Beaton cited, 23% of liberals and 32% of Democrats answered that they are extremely proud to be Americans, so it is not accurate to go on talking of “the left” as a monolithic block. And by the way, that same citation says 26% of Republicans did not say they were “extremely proud.” I do not believe that means they “hate America,” though Mr. Beaton apparently does.
He then proceeds to criticize at length (in blatant and ignorant stereotypes and straw-man argumentation) the ways in which “the left” voices dissatisfaction with particular facets of current life or governance in the U.S.A., as if being dissatisfied with any institution is the same as hating that institution. Does Mr. Beaton really believe that Alexander Hamilton, John Adams and James Madison “hated” America, just because they did not consider it perfect from its inception? Abraham Lincoln?
It is clear from this column that Beaton has no intention of engaging anyone who does not already share his legion of prejudices, stereotypes and resentments. As an extremely proud American, I sincerely hope The Aspen Times will not publish more of these diatribes. There are better uses for ink and newsprint.