October 2002

Jessa Crispin


Letters To the Editor

Note: All e-mails are printed as received. Spelling and grammar have not been, and will not be altered.

Have an opinion on something? Write a letter to the editor.

Re: Cunt Propaganda Column

michael schuab is an ignorant, mysoginist, sexist, elitist pig. he is everything that all waves of feminism are fighting against. he's right-he doesn't have a cunt and he doesn't have a clue either. yes, western medicine conducts pap test but the fda also approves of maxi pads and tampons that cause tss and the varied cancers that they are testing for. also, many women are mis-diagnosed each year and are given historectomies that they do not need and have breasts removed that do not contain cancer. schaub seems to have not done much research and this is probably the first book he has read that has anything to do with feminism. being pro-choice does not mean that we should support institutions that dehumanize women or that we cannot be critical of institutions that offer abortion. yes, we do live in a rape culture that vilifies women who have been raped and clearly there are many men who are turned on by rape, since it is such a prevalent theme not only in pornography, but in mainstream films written and directed by men, for nothing other than entertainment value.
it baffles me that schuab would be so angered and offended and by calling muscio a lyar he is proving that he chooses to remain blissfully ignorant.
- damali

Re: One Nation Under Gods review

Mr. Schaub,

I appreciated your review on Abanes' "One Nation Under Gods." It was as objective and unbiased as I have yet seen. So far there have been two sorts of reviews: LDS (Mormon) reviews (with the obvious claims), and the non-LDS reviews (a little less biased, but still misinformed).

With the battle of sides refuting one another the story seems to be unable to ever be settled. When you said it wasn't written historically, but journalistically, I found what I had felt towards the book from the start. The one question that needs answered is: if even five facts (or even one) are true from Abanes' source does that collapse the entire Mormon Church relative to its history, which precludes much, if not all, of its doctrinal faith?

Thank you,

Re: Blog

You seem to have left this topic behind, but here goes. You can publish this letter anonymously. Incidentally, good site.

It's OK if you hate Coulter; she certainly does not try to be likeable. Me, I'd find it interesting to meet her once but cannot imagine what it'd be like to deal with her over any long period of time.

She has various problems as a writer, especially in her syndicated columns, that appear to be caused by her personality. She's so hopped up on caffeine or venom or whatever the fuck it is that every single sentence has to curve in on itself to end in a barb. Choppy. It screws up the flow of argument. Better stylists know how to wait a paragraph, or a page, before letting the next blow fall. In this she's sort of like Maureen Dowd, though Dowd's columns are clogged with simpering and sneering while Coulter's are overfull of acid.

Yet I buy Ann's books anyway. She's much smarter than Dowd. And she works hard. There's lots of random spleen cluttering up Slander, yeah, but also a TON of research. For example, her deconstruction of the sloppy, epithetic way mainstream journalists use the term "religious right" is impressively done: just the kind of analysis you want press watchdogs to offer. Even the NYTimes had to admit this, backhandedly, in the weird, muddled book review it ran some weeks ago. You could tell the reviewer really wanted to dis Ann, but found the book too fact-loaded and frequently cogent to do so. So the review mumbled and hemmed and said, "Yeah, but..." a lot.

For this reason, that review you linked to by the New Republic intern dude struck me as an almost complete failure. No, she isn't Rush, buddy. You have a more complex datum to assimilate, and you failed to do so. She's way too jumpy and angry for her own good, yes, but she also knows she has to provide documentation and argument as well as gratuitous insult. She did, and lots of it is impressive. I thought that, on the merits, the book as a whole was damning.

FYI, Ann's appearance to promote Slander on CSPAN's Booknotes was surprisingly pleasant. Brian Lamb approached her in a calm, detached manner, and she calmed down in return and had thoughtful stuff to say.

OK, enough horse flogging.

Again, good site.

- anonymous Midwestern reader