To our Department of Hate.
I know who you arrre
and I know where you liiive ...
The other day while he was out, senior editor Ronn Neff received a phone message from a stranger who neglected to identify himself. We thought TLD readers should know about it, so we prepared a transcript. Twice the caller spoke indistinctly enough that we had to mark those bits as not positively intelligible. We omitted other parts to protect the innocent.
In addition to the news that we are under surveillance, we wanted friends of TLD to be aware of the state of the debate (even though sometimes it is unclear just what is being debated). Though we have rarely received anything quite so hateful, the caller's communique reflects much the same respect for reasoned argumentation, credible evidence, and Western civility that we have come to expect from our adversaries. As I recently told one of our writers who had received some hate mail, I think it would be unfair and discriminatory of us to exclude the opinions of our adversaries simply on the grounds that they are fools or villains.
Apparently the caller mistook Mr. Neff one of whose hats is that of our domain "landlord" for the owner and operator of The Last Ditch. (In fact, c'est moi.) The voice was that of an adult male, speaking in what I will politely describe as a "metropolitan" accent; and my guess is that he was speaking from a prepared script. It is interesting that nothing in his message, however churlish and sinister it may be, can readily be construed as criminally threatening. I think it is conceivable that he had million-dollar lawyers on retainer who vetted his script for him. As has long been plain, our established adversaries have lavish resources at their beck and call. (As has long been equally plain, we have not.)
Finally, never forget: according to the Authorities, it is we who are supposed to be the Haters.
Good evening. I'm calling [correct home telephone number] for Ronald Neff of [correct home address]. This information I'm getting from [a publicly available source]. I understand you operate a neo-Nazi website called Thornwalker.com. Mr. Neff, I understand you are also the webmaster for Joseph Sobran, that filthy, scummy Roman Catholic apprentice Nazi. [unintelligible Why don't you?] take your filthy Nazi ass back to [unintelligible Munich?] Germany. I'm quite sure your Vatican relatives there would love to have you there. As far as I am concerned, every Nazi should be thrown the hell out of the U.S.A. You people are a bunch of anti-Jewish dogs.
If this is not the phone number, then I am sorry. However, I am getting this phone number from [source]. If this is Ronald Neff, this message applies to you. If not, please disregard.
Ronn Neff comments ...
At the end, there, I can almost hear Gilda Radner's Emily Litella character from the old "Saturday Night Live" saying, "Never mind!"
The message was logged in to my voice mail on Sunday, April 6, 2003, at 11:24 p.m. (DST), which is not a time one normally places telephone calls to the home of a man he doesn't know.
I invite the caller to ring me up again at an hour when gentlemen traditionally place phone calls to private residences and this time leave his name, telephone number, and home address. Or maybe he'd like to leave his e-mail address. That is unless he is the yellow stoat I think he is.
April 7, 2003
Mr. Strakon's and Mr. Neff's commentary
© 2003 WTM Enterprises
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