My letter, printed in The Press on May 8, tried to illustrate that there are elements of socialism and/or communism woven into the fabric of our society and culture. I did not mention it, but the same could be said for the most prominent religions in the U.S. The responses to that letter were interesting because they illustrated several common things that happen in the LTE section of The Press.
One writer railed against the letter by pointing out “100’s of millions of deaths” had been caused by “Socialism and Communism.” This is a typical conflation of an idea that is presented with negative happenings that are remotely connected to it in order to disparage the idea. It is not at all grounded in logic or common sense. But, then it becomes the jumping off point for a rant against the writer and his or her idea. It also turns a blind eye toward the true causes of historical or current day events.
I believe that dictatorships are the most obvious cause of deaths throughout history other than natural causes. Dictators also falsely say they represent a type of government like communism, socialism or even democracy. That is obviously not true, but it would be interesting to see if that is what the critic had in mind. If so, he is interpreting history based on a lie told by a dictator. That does not bode well for a person’s ability to contribute to current day issues.