Mar 24, 1999
Liberal academics excuse lies for political reasons


March 23, 1999

Published 3/24/99

To the Editor:

Grace Rollins (“In Defense of Rigoberta Menchú,” Mar. 22) attempted to argue “In Defense of Rigoberta Menchú.” However, her sprawling, more than 1000-word guest column illustrates everything that’s wrong with today’s liberals: Rollins is willing to excuse a lie because it is a tool in what she believes to be a good cause.

Admitting the autobiography of Menchú to be largely fabricated, Rollins still tries “…to defend the POWER of the historical representation found in ‘I, Rigoberta Menchú.’” In trying to downplay the hoax that was the foundation of Menchú’s activism, Rollins concludes, “Now, more than ever, we need to remember her message.”

Unfortunately, as David Horowitz noted in his essay-advertisement on the Menchú Hoax, many so-called scholars agree with this reasoning. It does not take a very advanced moral code to see that mixing scholarship, lies, and activism is a concoction for utter corruption. Nor does it take exceptional insight to detect the hypocrisy inherent in using one lie to expose another, as this false history is supposedly used to uncover abuses of the Guatemalan government.

David Bookstaber ’99

March 23, 1999

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