Did you get all that?
Backstory: Greg Gutfeld, a commentator on Fox News went footloose a few days ago on my dad as it related to a tweet which is now ancient history. I emailed a response to him and he a response to me and so forth and now he and I are like Kobe and LeBron (even though I'll take Dwyane Wade). Anyway, the latest below. My initial stuff in BOLD, his response in normal text, mine back at him italics.
Dear Greg: Before you pass too much judgement on the Chopra Center and all of the various treatments you've already concluded have no benefit - or are too expensive - you may want to speak to someone who's been through them. That's what a journalist would do.
Goth, for ten years I worked in health mags, so I can smell new age clap trap a mile away. I know what catch phrases like "holistic" and "healing" mean. They mean "Pay me tons of cash for crap that does nothing but make you poor." And believe me I don't want to talk to anyone whose dumb enough to fork out thousands at the Chopra Center. Chances are they will show me pictures of their cat's aura, while drinking their own urine.
"Drinking urine?" Come on, Greg, the whole snake oil salesman, Satan worshipper routine is so 80's and by the way wreaks of racism. A lot has changed since your days at the health mags. Sounds to me like the years at Maxim hammered you down a little too hard. Truth be told, a lot of the same techniques that you're quick to condemn and criticize are now FDA approved. And that New Age stuff you hate, it's been around for a couple thousand years with quite the track record beyond your tenure at the local (and narrow minded) health mag rag. Do your research, brother.
On that. It seems your prices on the treatments are wayyyy off too. But then again, research seems not to be something nor your staff at Redeye has time for.
Onto the next part of GC's letter....
As a journalist, I traveled and reported from Pakistan, Afghanistan, Kashmir, Chechnya, Colombia, Iran, China, Israel, Palestine, Russia and more as well as about 35 of the 50 United States. For that reason, I feel somewhat qualified to talk about the psychology behind conflict, terrorism, fractured idealism and the vast differences between our nation and others as well as the sad similarities bred out of social disparity, injustice, intolerance, and jingoism.
Social disparity, injustice, intolerance! Jingoism! Someone's trying to impress ditzy co-eds at the coffee shop! Come on Goth, you're rich! You don't need those tired lines from the hippy handbook. Although I admit they do work on psych majors. Look, I might have taken you seriously if you hadn't bragged that you've been to 35 of the 50 United States. What are you, in seventh grade? You collecting magnets for your refrigerator? Besides, you've never been to America until you've been to Toronto.
Don't I wish. Like you, I've been married for 8 years and the closest I get to hanging with coeds is my 8-year-old niece! Rich? If you say so, but my guess is that you and I both know dudes in our respective hoods (nyc and la) that make us look like paupers. Also not sure how relevant our tax bracket is to the discussion.
Now of course as the Berkeley graduate, you would know the hippy vernacular better than me, so I defer to you. I come from the intellectual elitism of the Ivy league... even though it took some, um skillful maneuvering, on the day of graduation to get that diploma.
I counted this morning - 37 states! At least, bump me up in your estimation from middle school. And I've been to Toronto - even caught a homerun hit by Jesse Barfield back in the day. And as a proud Bruin (hockey) fan, I can say I hate the Maple Leafs.
And finally, a last bit from Goth...
Based on your interest in my dad's analysis of the holocaust, it seems you have your own opinions though I'm not sure what else they are grounded in aside from your snide - seemingly personal - dislike for him. If you're up for a meaningful dialogue, next time you're in LA, lunch is on me. If you demand the Ivy, so be it, though I prefer a place in Boyle Heights where the food is a lot better, and I think the people are a lot cooler (I would know, after all).
It's nothing personal, dude. When I was writing at the Huffington Post, I had to suffer through a lot of your dad's horrid writing, which always employed moral relativism as a way to avoid judging people who kill Americans. I remember him saying, how we need to avoid the us vs. them mindset - unless you're the U.S. - then, quote, "the blame for whatever follows will fall on America's head." That's not meaningful.
I've also had relatives die from cancer and there's nothing worse than a jackass telling them that it's the product of sad thoughts. I believe your pop said, "If you have sad thoughts... then you make those molecules which may depress the immune system and make you more susceptible to disease." That's called "blaming the victim" and it's at the heart of the mind-body holistic B-S peddled by you and pop.
'Moral relativism?' And you call me the uppity guy? I had to spellcheck that sh't just to make sure I got it right. Can I turn serious, though? For just a moment? I'm not sure our politics are so unaligned, in fact but the blind reliance on a moral authority (in this case the U.S.) undermines all the great things that our country does do. Let's just take the great Jihad which appears to be this century's great potential plague: Osama/Afghanistan? CIA backed, now biting us in the a$$. Iraq/Saddam, different sect, same story. Iran and their loose nukes? You guessed it. Let's not pretend that the divisive and destructive hate streaming from those places doesn't, in part, have tangled and complicit roots here in our own backyard. It's one thing to argue about the semantics and the lingo and our politics, it's a whole other thing to be blind to the facts. That condones it and condemn us all to another generation of terrorism and hate.
On the whole cancer bit. Sadly another area where we are connected, including a specific close family member (of mine) with whom we are currently enduring a lot of (emotional) pain. So I'd be careful about hurling around pedantic platitudes about 'blaming the victim.' You know not of what you speak. Indeed, I also know not of what I speak in this regard and have never claimed to peddle anything in the world to which you refer. I'm married to a physician and the son of one, but I try not to play one online. Red Sox-Yanks? Celtics-Cavs? Tiger vs. Rothlesburger? I know of what I speak - or at least can sound like I do. The rest of it, just a prophet for profit, like you buddy. You just have uncle Rupert as your sugar daddy.
So that's where my dislike is grounded. But I'll join you for lunch. I must warn you, after three drinks I get frisky.
3 drinks? That's all? It's on, baby. No reservations necessary where we're going.
Gotham Chopra regularly blogs at www.intent.com
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