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Pipes should face all comers

Reader comment on item: Television in Time of War

Submitted by William Edelstein (United States), Aug 2, 2005 at 19:51

Dear Daniel,

I understand, in principle, why you do not want to be on a radio or TV program with a terrorist or a spokesman for terrorism. However, given the great variety of people and the many ways they can advocate or be involved with anti-American sentiments or Israel hating or or antisemitism, I don't see a good way to draw a line. Obviously you have faced such people, or at least some who are on the verge of meeting these criteria. For example, you described such an encounter in #588.

What you have to do is to develop a strategy for such contretemps. Remain calm and do not sling insults back in response to barbs directed at you. You can be strong and rational and not have to "strike back" against "ad hominem calumnies." If you don't strike back in that way, there will be no nasty quotes for the press or others to twist. You are certainly a clever fellow, so I am confident that you can find a way.

Having said that, you have to use your time in a way that is most valuable, so you don't have to (and shouldn't) accept every invitation to debate. But you should not be afraid of any debate.

Bill Edelstein

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