I was saddened to read House Majority Leader Sue Vinton’s op-ed in the Aug. 27 Gazette expressing how disheartening it was that Democratic legislators had criticized Republicans for sponsoring pro-COVID legislation. The thought that elected officials might be publicly criticized for endangering the health of their constituents was almost too much to bear.
My sadness increased when The Gazette on Sept. 1 published what those Democratic legislators actually had written to upset Vinton. Their op-ed was a disturbingly fact-filled account of the many ways in which Montana’s government has failed to adequately cope with the state’s worst health crisis in a century. To attack opponents with personal insults is one thing; to attack them with facts is far more troubling.
We should all join Vinton’s call for increased bipartisanship and improved working relationships in America. But her words might carry more weight if she started within her own party instead of picking on the loyal opposition. The GOP’s most prominent member personally insulted about 850 people in thousands of tweets from June 2015 until Twitter banned him this year. The ad hominem attack was practically the only implement in his rhetorical toolbox. Those with stomachs strong enough can read the entire list at the New York Times website.
Yes, we should all try to be nicer. But let he who is without sin cast the first stone in this glass house.