Progressive Writers Bloc

[A letter to the editor of the Tule Times (1/22/04 issue) in response to a letter attacking one of the Progressive Writers' Bloc writers (and the left in general) as liars.]

Dear Editor:

We, the writers of the Left in America column welcome dialogue, but not verbal abuse. In our columns we intend to provide food for thought by expressing our views on controversial issues. If someone would like to express their disagreement the usual procedure is to state their own opinion about the topic, not belittle or make wild accusations about the person on the other side of the dialogue.

Perhaps Mr. Gray really does think all liberals disregard truth when he says, “The left does not believe in Truth as an absolute. That's what makes them leftists.” I, for one, believe the truth is out there in an absolute sense. Our problem, as part of our human condition, is if Absolute Truth were to reveal itself to us we would likely as not crucify it. The question is not whether Absolute Truth exists. The question is how finite human beings can know it absolutely. There are opposing viewpoints on most significant questions, including politics, because we each come at the truth with different life experience conditioning our perceptions. We can transcend these differences to the extent that we can have a little humility and listen to the perspectives of others while acknowledging their fundamental humanity and good will.

The group of us who have gotten together to write the Left in America column are sincerely trying to present a clear, well-reasoned, and thought-out analysis of our society with high regard for truth. Although each article has its own author, we disscuss the articles among ourselves and share in the editing process before they are submitted. Although we differ among ourselves, on some issues, we have a lot of common ground in our perspectives. We don’t expect that everyone in the community will agree with everything we say, but we should be able to expect that everyone will treat us civilly, as we commit to do the same.

--David Chandler

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