Letter to the editor: Gaines’ divisive rhetoric doesn’t help

Regarding Sen. Ted Gaines’ opinion piece “Gov. Brown’s fire tax hypocrisy an amazing political spectacle” (Sierra Sun, July 19, 2017). Regardless of the merits of the fire tax and cap-and-trade (both of which I support), Sen. Gaines overheated rhetoric and vitriol are the kind of verbiage that contributes to the divisiveness and anger in today’s politics and in the nation as a whole.

He uses words like “hypocrisy,” “elitist,” “dirty deal,” “shakedown,” “illegal,” “sham,” “extortion,” and “bogus” and the whole piece has a tone more consistent with an election attack ad than a thoughtful op-ed by an elected official.

I’m sure the senator can make his points in a more reasoned and less hostile manner; were he to do so he might even change a few people’s minds instead of hardening their positions against him.

It is possible to disagree with someone’s politics without accusing them of evil. This kind of rhetoric is certainly not the province of one political party or one side of the political spectrum and it is tearing the country apart.

Jack Kashtan


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