The Media’s Tribute to the Unabomber, Theodore Kacynski
The following is the text of a letter I sent to several groups which, in 1993, were discussing the Unabomber's ideas as published in his manifesto. Some have even followed the newspapers' lead and reprinted the manifesto in its entirety.
Here was my response:
I can't believe folks here are discussing this monster's ideas with calm and dispassion. The ideas -- yes; but the ideas because they originate from a man (?) who uses brutal and cowardly terrorism to gain the public's attention?
Let me tell you about a man named Dr. Epstein. He is humane, married to another MD, and engaged in research he believes will help humanity. His daughter JoAnna studied flute with my wife. An accomplished amateur, Dr. Epstein often accompanied his daughter on his cello. He would usually sit in on her lessons, and smiled with obvious pleasure as her heard his daughter progress on the flute.
One day JoAnna found a package on the doorstep of their house. She brought it in and set it on the table for her father.
An hour later, JoAnna heard a terrific explosion, and screams from her father. She rushed in to see her father covered in blood, his hands blown to bits.
He will never play the cello again.
JoAnna still wakes up screaming with the scene welling up in her nightmares. She will never get over it.
Does the man who caused this agony have a right to a platform from which he can lecture Americans about the evils of society? Does the fabricator of that bomb have the authority to pontificate to us about the evils of technology?
"He who would do good to another must do it in Minute Particulars:
General good is the plea of the scoundrel, hypocrite and flatterer."
-- William Blake