Irresponsible

Here’s a good one to test out the new COMMENTS capability!

Today’s San Jose Mercury News contains the following letter,

[A previous letter writer] could not be more disingenuous. His analogy is flawed. A more accurate and truthful analogy would be:

I have a dispute with a man in another city. Over the years, we have not only traded threats, but we physically fought over his having broken in and plundered my neighbor’s home.

Over the years, the police have been called out but there was nothing they could do. This man is known to have killed members of his own family and has experimented with weapons on his neighbors. This man has a reputation throughout the city of being insane, unpredictable and dangerous. He surrounds himself with armed gangsters. He supports the local gangs and pays them to commit murder and mayhem. This man is known to be experimenting with dangerous chemicals and at the same time, continues to threaten me and my neighbors. I am convinced this man at some point in the future will kill me and my family.

Am I justified in buying a weapon and traveling to this man’s house to shoot him dead before he comes after me? You bet. In fact, the law would probably find me justified in killing him. That is what the Bush Doctrine is about.

Never mind that this wild analogy falls apart in several ways. I think it is irresponsible for this newspaper to publish such a letter. You get a letter from a guy fantasizing that a guy across town means him harm, claiming this justifies his buying a weapon and shooting the man dead. You don’t PUBLISH a letter like that, you take it to the POLICE! Publishing it puts the paper’s credibility behind the notion that such action is justified. Nuts reading this might believe the information is correct and act on it.

I think this shows what could happen to the world if Bush gets his way. A “pre-emptive strike” against Iraq tells India to go ahead and invade Pakistan, China to invade India or Taiwan, etc.