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ADVICE, PLEASE: A reader suggests that the SF Call should not have run Marc Salomon's response to Kim Knox because it's "a red-baiting, anti-communist diatribe." Do you think it is? Should it have run?

Here are some of your responses. You are welcome to add your comment; you can speak freely & anonymously. Email bculp@sfcall.com.

7. To print or not to print

I appreciated the series of articles regarding the Green party and the insurgents. Nobody else is writing about them and they are good theater.

Since the original article was an opinion it was fitting to have another opinion. How would we know how these folks think if we didn't have a forum (Thank you).

As for the issue: Marc's reply was to the point: Carlos and his crowd(?) have no substance and can't work with others and don't intend to because their real goal is to usurp.

I don't know if the Greens have much credibility but if they allow themselves to be manipulated they won't have any.  

6. On Marc Salomon

As one who's naive in local politics, it was certainly interesting to see a scorecard to sort out the players, and to see the direction the Greens aspire to go ("neither left nor right ... ") It's the kind of thing I might carry around to show friends, but wouldn't want to put out without a disclaimer, because he's obviously an anti-communist and a jerk to boot. Does he really think he's going to make significant change following the rules of electoral politics? And does he represent where the Greens are coming from?


I may not like what a person says but I respect his/her right to say it (re Salomon vs. Knox).

 I also like to hear both sides of a story.

 4. Marc the commie basher

First of all, Hell yeah, you should publish stuff like that. Knowing Marc a bit, and knowing his history and perspective, (as I’m sure many of your readers do) I’m comfortable endorsing his ability to respond, and I thought he wrote well.

Second, and why I enjoyed reading both pieces, is how they so blatantly point out the problems of the left. Now I’m not an active participant in any of the referenced “chapters” of the Green party, so take my comments for what they are, but: You call that a party? 30 people who can’t agree on whether a fish needs a bicycle let alone practical applications of values on a municipal level (I can’t even fathom state wide or nationwide issues).

If we can call these multiple-personality-disorder-holier-than-thou-navel-gazing-debaters representative of leftist political leaders (god {or should I say ‘higher power’?} help us), this is a front row seat showing how *not* to participate in politics. Check those last three words:

“participate” – meaning to ‘contribute’, ‘take part’, ‘join’…. You can’t play a part in the decisions of a community if you can’t make decisions.

“In”—‘to be within’, or ‘inside’… 30 people? That’s not a movement or a party, that’s a book club. No, wait, book clubs tend to actually get along.

“politics”--- the give and take of ideas, values, power, and persuasion that brings people to some sort of decision. It’s not a sing-a-long or love-fest, it’s a power play. Your hands tend to get dirty, and sooner or later, you piss people off, because you can’t please all the people all the time.

The left, in this town, in this state, in this country, have three choices:

1. Play the game with all its ugly propaganda, power, and compromise.

2. Continue to argue amongst ourselves like a clown car deciding who gets to drive, never getting anywhere

3. Find bold, simple, honest ideas and plans that everyone can agree on. And if they can’t, either throw the idea out, or throw the people out… but you’d better have enough people left to do the work.

3. It was right for you do publish Marc's response

It was appropriate for you to publish Marc's response. First, with all the press getting censored it was needed to know the response. Second, many-MANY ezines and blogs do not publish responses (favorable or unfavorable) which leads to less information being given. Thirdly, what's wrong with Marc if he didn't want it published than maybe he shouldn't have bothered. Marc if a very good person and gave some good reasons. I appreciate all the efforts of the third party system and support many Green ideas. This would best be described as a growth period for San Francisco Greens - you know like a gawky awkward 13 year-old with the addition of a sqweaky voice.

You are right, we (the public-you the press) need the right to disagree.

Best of Luck and keep up the amazing work ( maybe give Marc a paragraph every week wouldn't hurt maybe even help )

2. the red-green flap

I think it's great that you ran Marc Solomon's piece. It doesn't seem like a red-baiting anti-communist diatribe to me. I didn't read it until your most recent email linking back to it. I am curious about the direction of the Green Party, and not overly impressed by it. Nor do I find any inspiration in the Frontlines crowd. But I am sure that whatever one's organizing approach, if you eschew the tired dogmas of Leninist party building for something more organic, decentralized, consensus-leaning, etc., then one of the most difficult pieces is how does a group exclude? What are the rules and expectations that allow for exclusion if your basic premise is openness? It's a very difficult, time-consuming and exhausting problem, and left-wing sects have frequently used the overarching "niceness" of a lot of lefty activists to take over otherwise promising new initiatives. Some folks I know have pondered the notion of holding open assemblies, but invariably the idea is discarded when the prospect of being deluged by sectarian leftists is taken seriously. Openness and transparency are great, but if they are going to be workable guiding principles, there has to be a way to exclude those whose style, ideology, and political purpose contradicts those principles. And Marc deserves credit for trying to lay out publicly what his thinking and process was, because that in turn allows for further discussion and contemplation. If the decisions taken are determined to be incorrect, an honest explanation makes further adjustment possible, even likely.

Thanks for running it, and don't get bullied by name-calling.

1. I think it's perfectly acceptable to run both Kim's and Marc's articles.

If you check your PC's Paint program, you will find that Red + Green = Yellow. Put that in your hookah and smoke it.