OPINION — It is one thing to have an opinion, and an entirely different thing to make blatantly false accusations.
Yet, under the guise of his “opinion,” columnist Ed Kociela used your website to make demonstrably false charges against hundreds of thousands or even millions of wonderful American men and women of all races and creeds across America who belong to or support the John Birch Society.
I refer to Mr. Kociela’s June 14 piece headlined “On the EDge: The ‘alt-right’ attack on Sistas in Zion represents deeper rooted racism.” In this post, Mr. Kociela falsely claims that the John Birch Society represents “white nationalism.” Further, he dishonestly attempts to make a comparison between JBS and the Ku Klux Klan — something only an ignorant fool or a liar with an agenda and no moral scruples would try to do.
This is the epitome of dishonesty. For one, the John Birch Society has always welcomed people of all races and creeds, even back when the Democratic Party was literally sending KKK leaders to Congress. In fact, so determined were JBS leaders to keep racism out of the Society that, unlike in the Democratic Party, expressing any racist or anti-Semitic sentiments has always been grounds for immediate and permanent expulsion from JBS.
What the Birch Society actually represents is summed up well in its motto, “Less government, more responsibility, and – with God’s help – a better world.”
Our goal is simply to preserve the Constitution and the liberties it protects by educating Americans with the truth and exposing the forces that would subvert our Republic. That is it. Race plays no role in it whatsoever, which is why people of all races have joined the Society.
Those are just some of the many reasons that Ezra Taft Benson, the only cabinet secretary to serve two terms in the Eisenhower administration, praised the Society as “the most effective non-church organization in our fight against creeping socialism and Godless Communism.” Benson later went on to become the president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, against which Kociela appears to have an ax to grind.
That the JBS has always been opposed to racism is proven in its 60-year record of publications, its many Jewish and black leaders going back to its founding in 1958, its well-known expulsion of racists even when they were members of Congress or wealthy donors, and much else. You can find videos of many of the Society’s black and Jewish leaders speaking about JBS and what it stands for on Youtube.
Even official investigations have proven this. For example, a California Senate Fact-Finding Committee dominated by Democrats came to the obvious conclusion that the Society was not and is not racist.
“The organization is open to people of all religions, all races, all political persuasions except those deemed subversive,” the official investigation found, adding that investigators found “much evidence to the effect that it [JBS] opposes racism in all forms.”
Mr. Kociela is being incredibly dishonest. If he is ignorant of the facts, then he has no business writing on these topics and should issue an apology immediately. If he wrote this article knowing the truth, that would make him a liar, which is even worse, and he should still issue an apology. Either way, he should be embarrassed, and your website should be as well. Shame on Mr. Kociela for this blatant dishonesty.
When this dishonesty was exposed, excuses were made by the editor suggesting that this was merely Mr. Kociela’s “opinion,” and therefore that this was legitimate.
How would Mr. Kociela feel if he were called a pedophile and then, as a defense, his accuser claimed that, while Kociela does not characterize himself as a pedophile – a term that, along with child molester and the like, has varying definitions – characterizations by opponents will vary. No doubt he would not be happy.
Mr. Kociela and your website should have the intellectual honesty and integrity to correct this vicious lie immediately.
Written by AMADEUS FRISON.
West Palm Beach, Florida.
Letters to the Editor are not the product or opinion of St. George News and are given only a light edit for technical style and formatting. The matters stated and opinions given are the responsibility of the person submitting them.