John Montanari: A path to a truce with progressives

Wednesday, July 01, 2020

I, a person of mixed conservative, classical liberal and libertarian beliefs, would like to offer the following five terms for a truce with the progressives of the Pioneer Valley. Each of these terms is based on experience or observation from my 42 years in the Valley.

1. I won’t call for the suppression of your ability to express your opinions, no matter how sharply I disagree with them, if you will allow me to speak my opinions with equivalent freedom. In other words, I’ll leave your lawn sign alone if you leave my lawn sign alone.

2. I won’t engage in ad hominem attacks against you if you won’t aim ad hominems at me. We can discuss ideas, even heatedly. But there’s no place in our discussion for personal attacks.

3. I won’t join a mob attempting to silence you, dox you, shut down your business or otherwise “cancel” you for some alleged offense if you won’t try to cancel me. It so happens that I’m at the point of my life where I have little left to be cancelled from. But others are not, and don’t deserve such treatment.

4. I will be forgiving about your previous statements or actions, not dredging them up years later in a malicious attempt to smear you, if you will also be forgiving about my past peccadillos. We all have them.

5. I won’t claim always to be right, to have all the facts, to occupy a higher moral plain, and to be overall superior to you because of my beliefs if you will show the same humility. Is it a deal? Thanks.

John Montanari