Schaller chickens out

February 09, 2011

In his Jan. 11 column ("Conservatives' rhetoric more violent" Tom Schaller wrote: "...today's violent political imagery is produced almost exclusively by paranoid conservatives."

In his Jan. 25 column ("More evidence of violence on the right" following a list of alleged acts of violence he attributed to persons on the political right, Mr. Schaller wrote: "To my critics, I pose a simple challenge: Produce a comparable list of violent acts or attempted acts in the past two years perpetuated by supporters of [liberal causes] against corporate executives, pro-life organizers, small business owners or white evangelicals."

Even though I saw immediately that he had stacked the deck by setting up a time frame that matched up with the first two years of Barack Obama's Presidency, and control of both the House and the Senate by Democrats, and only counting attacks by liberals on "corporate executives, pro-life organizers, small business owners or white evangelicals," I sent him an e-mail accepting his challenge on the same day he issued it.

During the next several days, I sent him lists of violent acts and acts encouraging violence by members of the political left. His response: silence.

I then assumed that he was waiting to respond in his next scheduled column on Feb. 9, two weeks after he had made such a big deal about challenging Conservatives to prove him wrong.

But again, he did not respond. Instead, his Feb. 9 column dealt with his support for taxing the use of plastic bags and alcoholic drinks ("The (occasional) virtues of nickel and diming"

It seems to me that Mr. Schaller shot himself in the foot and then put his foot in his mouth.

Richard T. Seymour, Baltimore

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