However, I will not fall prey to a massive bout of hubris and claim that I have my "finger on the pulse", that I have an unflinching knowledge of all the nuances and tangenticals of soci-political life.
So, confronted with a caricature of William Ayers during the Presidential Election cycle, I started to wonder - who is this man?
If you were to believe people like Sean Hannity and Bill O'Reilly, he roamed the American landscape with his associates burning, bombing, and rioting with no clear motive.
There was just enough information given to make you say, what?
Rather tha eat what you are being served, why not see what the man himself has to say:
IN the recently concluded presidential race, I was unwillingly thrust upon the stage and asked to play a role in a profoundly dishonest drama. I refused, and here’s why.
I was cast in the “unrepentant terrorist” role; I felt at times like the enemy projected onto a large screen in the “Two Minutes Hate” scene from George Orwell’s “1984,” when the faithful gathered in a frenzy of fear and loathing.
With the mainstream news media and the blogosphere caught in the pre-election excitement, I saw no viable path to a rational discussion. Rather than step clumsily into the sound-bite culture, I turned away whenever the microphones were thrust into my face. I sat it out.
I never killed or injured anyone. I did join the civil rights movement in the mid-1960s, and later resisted the draft and was arrested in nonviolent demonstrations. I became a full-time antiwar organizer for Students for a Democratic Society. In 1970, I co-founded the Weather Underground, an organization that was created after an accidental explosion that claimed the lives of three of our comrades in Greenwich Village. The Weather Underground went on to take responsibility for placing several small bombs in empty offices — the ones at the Pentagon and the United States Capitol were the most notorious — as an illegal and unpopular war consumed the nation.
Read more of Ayers Op-Ed at The New York Times.
Is Ayers a man to be admired, respected, shunned, stoned, ignored? Who truly knows. The important thing is to decide for yourself.