Letters to the editor: Selective bias for Dilbert cartoon; the problem with 'woke'

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Canceling Dilbert unnecessary

Re: Elwood Lake’s March 8 letter, “Separate art from the artist”:

Thanks so much to Elwood Lake for his reasonable and spot-on comments about Scott Adams and the Dilbert comic strip. Dilbert is a cartoon that resonates with a lot of people, and even if newspaper circulation is down, I’d bet most readers are unhappy to see it removed.

Like most people, I saw Mr. Adams’ unfortunate comments, and leaving aside whether he actually meant what folks assume he did (and people are known to jump to unfair conclusions on sensitive or complicated issues), I agree he really should’ve known better. His voice contributed negatively to an already toxic discourse and calling him out for that is justified. But quite literally “canceling” his strip is unnecessary.

Mr. Lake makes great points about separating the art from the artist, and I’d just add that if people really wanted to be consistent in seeking social justice by boycotting products of those who offend them, they should also stop driving Ford cars to take their families to Disneyland or Boy Scout meetings, since all these enterprises were founded by men with personal views that would upset many people today.

There seems to be a lot of selective bias in who and we “cancel,” boycott, and censor, with artistic products having the least protection, and economic juggernauts having the most, especially if it would be really inconvenient to live up to the dictates of our outrage, like by quitting Ford or Disney. Imagine the crying, from the kids on one hand, and your Chevy-hating uncle on the other.

Dymitr Harashevsky, Ventura

The danger of being ‘woke’

Re: Ingrid Jacques’ March 13 column, “What does ‘woke’ really mean to GOP?”:

In reply to Jacques’ column, here are a few examples of wokeness and its absurd consequences: A Supreme Court nominee who cannot define a woman. A biologically male athlete proudly displaying the medal he won competing in women’s sports; the women he defeated being advised to shut up. Lower college admission standards. The near disappearance of humor from late night TV. The demotion of Elon Musk from media darling to pariah. Overuse of the term “conspiracy theory” by people who imagine oppression everywhere. The suppression of rational discussion of the COVID pandemic and vaccines. Hyperventilating about perceived fascism while advocating for censorship of those who disagree.

The danger of being woke is that it permits only a single viewpoint and diverts attention from real problems. Practical solutions require trade-offs. In the end, we must work together. That requires dialogue and respect for the views of others, not wokeness.

Jim Kentosh, Ojai

This article originally appeared on Ventura County Star: Letters: Selective bias for Dilbert cartoon; the problem with 'woke'