Letter to the Editor: March 2, 2016

Clinton-Trump comparison faulty 

Readers expect columnists to offer controversial fare. Such messages frequently reveal more about the writer’s ideology than the subject explored. Whether they agree or not, readers accept such revelation as the honest identity of the writer. Readers of Professor J. Martin Rochester’s Feb. 24 column (“Waiting for the political center to coalesce”) should be warned that his analysis of the presidential campaign camouflages as an academic exercise while simply promoting his personal political ideology.

The professor judges the positions of the top candidates on the left, Hillary Clinton, with those on the right, Donald Trump, as equally extreme. He states, “…we are at risk of selecting a president who represents only an extreme element.” and further on, “Hopefully, Hillary, the presumed Democratic nominee, will have come in from left field, while Donald, or whoever the GOP taps, will have come in from right field.”

To call Hillary Clinton an extremist on a par with Donald Trump’s stance betrays his myopic vision. Indeed, if the two candidates will not move “towards the center” he may sit out the election.

By now, readers may have gotten to know Prof. Rochester’s social and political orientation, usually defending the status quo while tilting to the right, sometimes very right (no, not extremist). That’s his right. What is objectionable is when his writings, as in the instance above, claims to offer historic underpinnings for his personal political opinions. 

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Clinton, he claims, “appears to be representing a slice of the electorate that is not much bigger than the ‘1 percent’ super-rich, whom the Occupy Wall Street protesters had targeted.”

By implication he insults all who support Clinton for supposedly supporting an extremist. 


Charles L. Klotzer

University City