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Candidates are right to skip debates

I disagree with the playbook-planted comments that admonish the two Republican candidates for passing on traditional debates. The sad truth is that people of that very illiberal political persuasion have already made up their minds and honestly don’t want to listen to what any other candidate has to say. Their minds are closed to hearing, let alone critically considering, any opposing thought or opinion, no matter how logically or sensibly presented.

During the past decade, I’ve attended enough so-called debates to see that the League of Women’s Voters and others are far from fair Q&As with neutral moderators. They’re cold-calculated set-ups, used as recurring opportunities to publicly pillory and antagonize Republican candidates. The nefarious intent of which is to evoke a campaign-ending “gotcha” sound-bite.

No matter the sincerity of belief nor courage of conviction, trying to communicate with a closed-minded and openly hostile audience, reported on by blatantly biased media, is at best futile if not masochistic. As both Republican ladies are clearly doing, they’ve chosen instead to take their messages directly to their constituents. They’re merely bypassing the cleverly-scripted-against-them events where they have everything to lose and nothing to gain but frustration.

David A. Hagginbothom

James City County

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