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OPINION | LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: About partisanship | Brainwashing, DIY | Danger of grievance

February 12, 2021 at 2:53 a.m.

About partisanship

Republican senators, including our own Boozman and Cotton, decry the partisanship of the impeachment trial of Donald Trump. I think an easy fix for that is for Republican senators to vote to convict Trump. They know he's guilty.

Win-win: no more Trump, no more partisanship, and Tommy boy can crawl out from Individual 1's shadow.

ED HOWINGTON

Little Rock

Brainwashing, DIY

I was sad about a recent letter in this column. The writer said he has stopped reading all columns he doesn't agree with.

In Russia, the opposition is silenced. Dissenters are jailed. Newspapers and TV and radio are controlled by the state. The citizens are brainwashed. They only hear one side. In America, we brainwash ourselves voluntarily. We listen to nobody who says anything we don't already believe. We read nothing we might not agree with. We move further and further into our insulated bubble.

Many believe that the Democrats--the Democrats!--were smart enough to manufacture millions of fake votes for their candidate in total secrecy. Why do we believe? Because we have heard it so many times. If we ignore logic and independent thinking, we will believe anything that is repeated often enough (as Hitler's propaganda minister so famously is reputed to have said).

Take the Easter Bunny, for instance. First the business segment on our favorite TV station recommends bunnies as an investment because of their reproductive prowess. Then we see a montage of adorable talking Disney bunnies, including Thumper. Russ Limbaugh points out their magnificent whiteness and superiority over other animals (especially donkeys) and Tucker Carlson reveals that there is a rumor the Roman Empire was really governed by a secret cabal of rabbits. Then we get a letter from an "evangelical Christian" who explains that the ancient Jewish word for "rabbit" could be translated "leader." Now we are ready to welcome the Easter Bunny. How could we not? We have allowed our brains to be washed. (It's not that the other side doesn't try to do it too. They just aren't as good at it.)

Are we informed?

BARBARA TRUESDELL

Hot Springs Village

Danger of grievance

I saw an ad for David Horowitz's book "Dark Agenda: The War to Destroy Christian America." Several blurbs tell what the book says: Leftist Democrats are waging war against Christianity and trying to create a godless, heathen American society. Barack Obama is the hero of the anti-God left, and the Biden-Harris administration poses dangers for Christians.

Wow, who knew?

This book represents a certain political culture that's really taken off: the culture of grievance and paranoia of the political right. This culture has been alive for a long time. It was brought to a fever pitch by Donald Trump, who simply hooked into it, amplified it, and organized it. It's what all of his rallies were about.

Grievance is one of the most powerful mechanisms in humans. It involves resentment, anger, hostility, and revenge. It has a way of taking people over so that they are motivated by little else. Everything boils down to nursing grudges and plotting revenge. Truth goes out the window and opponents are savagely demonized. In his "retirement," Trump is devoting all of his time to heaping revenge on everyone he thinks has slighted him.

The grievance game is played by people of all political stripes, but the version that Trump has energized is in a league all by itself. It doesn't just want to win points, it wants to destroy opponents. It leaves no role for honest conversation or bipartisan cooperation. What we Americans are now experiencing is a deadly impasse that has the potential to bring all of us down. As Confucius warned, "Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves."

SANDY WYLIE

Bella Vista

Accept responsibility

As a constituent, I was absolutely infuriated to read reports that Sen. Tom Cotton looked down at his papers and refused to watch the footage of the attack on the Capitol during the first day of the impeachment hearing. This is unacceptable.

The senator must witness and accept his responsibility in this trial. I believe no reasonable person could view these events and not see that the former president directly instigated the attack on our Capitol, our government officials, and our democracy. Donald Trump must be convicted. He is on trial, but so is every Republican senator, to determine if they have the integrity and courage to do what is right. I urge Senator Cotton to look up.

JENNIFER KINES

Little Rock

Label them 'pro-birth'

I congratulate Len White for his recent missive. I have been writing for years now that the "pro-life" logo should really read "pro-birth." Nothing that the supporters ever write or argue say anything about nurturing the baby, or who will provide housing, food and care. Those things cost money.

Do the supporters simply not care that most unwanted babies are thrown to government agencies to care for? Some babies are desired greatly by either foster-approved parents or adoptive parents. But hundreds are not wanted. That is a shame, of course, for life is precious.

Those of us who do not believe that abortion should be used openly as birth control nevertheless are concerned about these other issues. This is not a cut-and-dried issue. As with most serious life issues, it is a complex matter. I agree strongly with Len that if Jason Rapert had included material about "deadbeat dads" and free protective sex products, his bill would make more sense. However, Rapert acts as much as a loose cannon in the Legislature as our own Sen. Tom Cotton. The thoroughness of an issue is often not a part of their hot ideas.

JOHN W. "DOC" CRAWFORD

Arkadelphia

It's not Republicans

In response to Jerry Davis' letter, "End party, start anew": Change "Republican" to "Democrat" in the first two paragraphs and drop the last paragraph, then you have a perfect description of what this country faces for the next four years.

GILDA SKRMETTI

Little Rock

C'mon, say the words

OK, Sarah and Leslie, I challenge either one of you to use any one of these words in a sentence without throwing up in your mouth: common ground, unity, cooperation, justice, or compromise.

RUSSELL LEMOND

Little Rock

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