Tussling With Tidwell
No, not Cameron Tidwell! I’m talking about Rudy Tidwell, a theocratic columnist for the local paper. (See my previous gripe about one of his columns.) I usually try to avoid reading him, so as to maintain my serenity, but I succumbed a couple of times recently; the fruits of my weakness follow:
My December 5th letter to the Opelika-Auburn News (not published):
To the Editor:My December 18th letter to the Opelika-Auburn News (published today):
Rudy Tidwell (Dec. 5) objects to hearing members of the anti-homosexual lobby called"homophobic," since, he says, this term falsely implies that they have a"persistent, abnormal, or irrational fear" of homosexuals.
Well, the anti-homosexual lobby has been loudly proclaiming for some time that allowing gays to marry would somehow, inexplicably, lead to the destruction of the institution of marriage, and thereby to the destruction of civilisation itself. In addition, Senator Rick Santorum has stated that legalising homosexuality will also lead to the legalisation of child abuse. Then of course there's Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson, who claim that American gays have provoked God into sending hurricanes and terrorist attacks toward the United States.
Gee, sounds like"persistent, abnormal, or irrational fear" of homosexuals to me.
Roderick T. Long
To the Editor:I thought the one they didn't print was a bit more important than the one they printed, but who can fathom the ways of the Opelika-Auburn News?
Last February, in the pages of the Opelika-Auburn News, Rudy Tidwell attacked the poem"Invictus" (and insulted its author) for expressing the viewpoint"I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul." Mr. Tidwell called such a viewpoint"the essence of sin." (I remember because you published my response on Feb. 22.)
In today's column Mr. Tidwell praises the poem"The Winds of Fate" (which he incidentally misattributes to the infamous Henry Ward Beecher; it is actually by Ella Wheeler Wilcox, 1850-1915) for expressing substantially the same viewpoint -- that it is"the set of a soul" and not the winds of circumstance that determine our fate.
I'm glad to see that Mr. Tidwell has changed his mind.
Roderick T. Long
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Rudy Tidwell - 4/21/2010
Roderick, Your letters to the O A News and others found here concerning me are still as false as they were when you first wrote them and I first read them! I find it especially difficult to begin to fathom the senses of your mind. You draw conclusions from vague assumptions so much that it is hard to know when you are serious! You have made more assumptions of me in regards to what you think I think...(I think!) So much of what you write regarding me sounds like humor, but you don't appear to be a humorous man. I seriously think that what you write about me is utter fiction! You do have quote an imagination...