My version of the headline says it all, if we were to tell the story in brief. Mark Oppenheimer’s series of five articles on Mark Weber and me and anti-Semitism is the usual stuff, though it is better written than most, and it has some new personal information on Mark and me, something Mark must not be very happy with but is easy going for an ordinary autobiographer like me. But for the rest, without meaning to sound mean-spirited, it is more of the same by a Holocaust True Believer.
This isn’t to say that Oppenheimer is not a likeable guy. He is. I liked him within the first minute of meeting him, and I feel the same way toward him now as I did then. I would wish that we would live in the same neighborhood, drink at the same bar—or rather, eat lunch in the same diner—and be able to talk things over once in a while. I would try to teach him how sometimes, when it’s simple, it’s just as good as when it’s complicated. And of course, I would listen to him. I really would.
If you will, dear reader, I would like you to point out to me where Oppenheimer addresses any specific statement I have ever made (I think he does once or twice), what he says about it, and how close to the truth you think it might or might not be. It would help me begin to respond to what is, in the end, a somewhat interesting 9,000 (yeah, 9,000) words. Maybe when I read it more closely it will be more interesting. As a matter of fact, I am certain it will be. Meanwhile . . . .
I will say up front that Oppenheimer is more interested in Weber than he is in Smith. I think that only natural. Oppenheimer is an academic, a Yale Ph.D. in church history, and Weber is of an academic turn of mind, has an M.A. in history and has written and published on historical issues. I am none of the above. I think what I do is too simple for Oppenheimer to get his head around it. But we will see. Any suggestions you have—I’m all ears.