DATE: 2/01/2005 09:22:00 AM
Lileks vs. Moyers - It's no contest. There's even an obligitory Gnat moment.
At issue is the environment. While in college, I once attended an "Earth First!" rally for fun. Call it research, whatever. It was basically a church service. Seriously.
There were songbooks in the back of the room full of odes to the environment. You think I'm kidding? Some of them were, I suppose, original compositions. Others were rewritten hymns or popular songs.
At the meeting, there was a time to share, a few sermons and some discussion. It was all a bit boring, actually. No talk of spiking trees or burning down houses. For that, one had to take a philosophy course. In that class, I had the distinct pleasure of reading books like "Ecotopia" and "Reweaving the World: The Emergence of Ecofeminism." Class discussion was interesting. There were about three or four conservatives, seven or eight die-hard environmentalists and a bunch of apathetics who mostly sat around looking nervous.
I found myself arguing with people who honestly believed there was nothing wrong with potentially killing someone with a spiked tree, since the tree had as much right to existence as the logger. Our professor once spent ten minutes trying to explain the ecological roots of the f-word. And people wonder why college made me more conservative. I have a pretty good imagination, but I couldn't make this stuff up if I tried.
The class did have its hilarious moments, though. Once, while discussing vegetarianism, there was a heated discussion between a vegan and a vegetarian. The vegan was basically accusing the vegetarian of heresy for having the audacity to wear leather and drink milk. The debate had the same tone and tenor of fights between believers in predestination and those who believe in free will.
What Lileks brings up, and Moyers constantly ignores, is that the left has just as many extremists as the right and they can be just as dangerous. That Moyers has ignored the extreme left while railing against the "right-wing" shows that he is either prejudiced against those of conservative religious belief or intellecually lazy. Neither reflects well on him or his former employer.