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It's fanaticism

September 14, 2008

Re "The American secessionist streak," Opinion, Sept. 10

Christopher Ketcham airily dismisses Sarah Palin's chumminess with the Alaskan Independence Party and her husband's seven-year membership in it as nothing worse than "that loveliest of American predilections, our crotchety contrarianism."

The last time a large number of Americans decided that the government was "broken and cannot be fixed" by traditional means, it was because they were determined to keep blacks enslaved. That fanaticism, which resulted in more than 200,000 American deaths, was a bit more than "crotchety."

Today, as we face global challenges such as climate change and expansionist Russia and China, the idea of dismantling America is beyond quaint. It's dangerous stupidity.

If 20% of Americans today see nothing wrong with secession, then the extreme right wing's ongoing war to undercut public education (particularly in the realms of history and civics) is bearing plentiful, if rotten, fruit.

Doug Molitor

Monterey Hills

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