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Letter: Opinion section is for publicly expressing views

Feb 23, 2021

It seems evident from Glen Weber’s Feb. 6 letter to the editor about accountability and truth, and earlier letters, that he harbors an intense dislike of Republicans in general, and anyone else whose opinion differs from his own. Each letter of his, that I recall, has included a personal attack on the credibility or integrity of someone else.

Wes Mader’s Jan. 23 column, “American Democracy on the Brink,” was the latest to draw Weber’s wrath. Weber accuses Mader of “irresponsible partisan editorializing,” apparently because Mader considers both political parties responsible for the past four years of turmoil in Washington. Apparently, Weber cannot tolerate the possibility anyone other than Republicans can be responsible for the turmoil in our government.

Weber continues with another phrase “outlandish partisan opinion” to belittle Mader’s reference to the current impeachment trial as being political. In an earlier letter to the editor, he referred to a column by Mader as “an example of questionable writing, more fitting for a high school history class.” While Weber is quite articulate in berating others, it’s really not very becoming to use that talent to ridicule everyone who might disagree with him.

Weber says “accountability and truth must prevail,” and then seems to indicate that he subscribes to the notion that Russia stole the election from Hillary Clinton in 2016 (which she continues to claim). Weber and other Democrats are entitled to that opinion, just as Republicans who believe the 2020 election was rigged are entitled to theirs. But, if Weber’s thesis is that believable information can only come from Democrats, he might be reminded that a two-year investigation at a cost of tens of millions of tax dollars, couldn’t find tangible evidence to support Hillary’s claim that Russia stole the election from her.

The editorial page of our local newspaper provides opportunity for those who are willing to publicly express their views. However, if submitting a letter is an invitation to be publicly ridiculed by someone with a different opinion, it won’t be long before the only ones we hear from are those who verbally bully others.

Weber’s letter accuses Trump of using “the bully pulpit.” Has it occurred to him that he’s been using this newspaper as his pulpit to bully anyone who disagrees with his version of the truth? That’s been the approach taken by too many in the administrative and legislative branches of our federal government for too many years, and the result has been the loss of civility and a divided nation.

Mader’s column included criticism of the leadership on both sides of the political aisle. It singled out both a Democrat and a Republican for special compliment, and reminded us of the need for term limits in Congress, as supported by 80% of Americans. Weber who apparently is a diehard Democrat, calls this “irresponsible partisan editorializing.” I wonder what a diehard Republican would call his letter.

John Siskoff

Prior Lake

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