Monday, January 06, 2003


To: The Rittenhouse Review
From: Noah Schabacker
Date: January 6, 2003

I peruse your blog, The Rittenhouse Review, daily and am always entertained and informed by what I find.

It’s not often that what you link to triggers my gag reflex, but I must admit that Ben Shapiro sorely tests my belief that the “marketplace of ideas” is one of the cardinal virtues of a democratic society.

It’s not that Shapiro fisks with all the intelligence and wit of a troll; it’s not that his sense of entitlement and whiny posts are utterly juvenile; it’s not even that he uses his religion as an excuse for his intolerance and bigotry.

No, what really nauseates me is the smug self-assurance with which he delivers each steaming pile of scribbled excrement, as if the world really ought to be grateful to ol’ Ben for taking time out from his busy schedule of school, Sabbath, and “Lord of the Rings” to favor us with his fevered ramblings.

I felt soiled after reading his appeal for crimes against humanity in the occupied territories.

I am ashamed to call myself a Jew when I read what passes for virtue and morality among those on the war-mongering Right, and I sincerely question the value of speech calling for the violation of international law and calling for the political and physical destruction of an entire people.

Then I look back at a paper I wrote as a freshman in college where I asserted the necessity of people of high moral character and just spirits to refute those who would undermine the ideals of justice and peace, and I am very happy that you and your counterparts on the left are doing the heavy lifting in the land of electronic text.

Thanks for all your hard work.

Noah Schabacker
Boulder, Colo.