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Gelernter Accuses, but He's Also Guilty

June 24, 2005

Re "We Are Our History -- Don't Forget It," Commentary, June 17: David Gelernter is absolutely right about the appalling lack of accurate historical perspective in the news media and in the schools. And clearly Gelernter is proving his point.

He accuses our culture of "teaching ideology instead of facts," and then uses the tail end of his sermon to regurgitate and validate the bogus, ever-changing Bush administration line on Iraq.

If this is Gelernter's idea of filling our empty vessels with facts, not ideology, we're in more trouble than he thinks.

Rick Ginell

Frazier Park

*

Gelernter is correct that we all ought to learn history, but not credible that history's facts lead us to his historical truth.

His right-wing ideology is very clear from his remarks:

Guantanamo is not a gulag (I recently heard an ex-gulag inmate demur); we're lucky President Bush will "pay any price" for the liberty of President Kennedy's inaugural speech; we are "fighting for freedom" in Iraq, etc. (Should we go back to Vietnam if we dropped the freedom ball?)

I tolerate his ideology, among others, in a free-thinking society. But it's fatuous to believe that teaching the facts is synonymous with having the opinions that he is only too willing to serve up. He too is a "propaganda machine" -- study history so you can learn to think for yourself.

Harry Mairson

Brookline, Mass.

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