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  • Donald Keene Center opens in Kashiwazaki, Niigata Prefecture. His life and library can be seen, for a price.

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on October 23rd, 2013

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    Hi Blog.  Saw this interesting poster in, of all places, an elevator in Narita Airport last September:

    DonaldKeeneCenter

    Yes, that’s our Donald Keene, currently aged 91, whose center last September 21 was opened up in Kashiwazaki (for those who unfamiliar with that part of Niigata Prefecture, K-town is in between Nagaoka and Joetsu; nice beach) in order to transmit “the excellence of Japanese literature” (watashi wa ninon bungaku no subarashisa o tsutaetai).

    This is an important event, as it counts as an established NJ legacy on the scale of Edwin Dun and of course Lafcadio Hearn/Koizumi Yakumo (both of whom have their lives immortalized in building form).

    Now, where Debito.org has taken issue with Keene is with not with his scholarship or contributions to the field of Japanese studies (indeed admirable), but with his naturalization while publicly denigrating NJ.  As chronicled here and in the Japan Times, he himself made a big fuss about how he was becoming a Japanese citizen for selfless reasons, e.g., to “become one of them“, to show “solidarity with the Japanese people” in their time of great need, so that he might help victims of the Tohoku Disasters in some way.

    Fine.  But he also threw in all sorts of irrelevancies and nastiness, such as making himself out to be morally superior to other NJ residents (contrasting himself with those allegedly fleeing Japan like the mythical “Flyjin”, mentioning how he wasn’t committing crimes like they were — despite actual NJ crime trends).  It was a poor show of social science by a trained researcher.

    If he’s going to be mean, then he’s going to have his record scrutinized like everyone else.  So, despite his promises to “contribute to areas affected by the [Tohoku] disaster“, by now what has he done?  Put his Donald Keene Center in Tohoku to attract tourists?  Sorry, Kashiwazaki is quite far away from the disaster areas, and the Donald Keene Center website doesn’t even mention the events in Tohoku as any form of motivation.  Visited Tohoku like other NJ to help out with relief efforts?  Well, according to his English Wikipedia entry, he gave a speech in Sendai; thanks, but…  Or opening up his library for free to the public?  No, sorry, that’s not how business is done:

    DonaldKeeneCenter2

    Not sure where profits are going.  Again, no mention of contribution to disaster relief on the Center’s website.

    And of course, there is one very big contribution to Japan he could still yet make.  One very big open secret about douseiaisha in Japan is that even if they can’t get officially married (due to Japan’s koseki system), they can still adopt one another and establish inheritance rights.  That’s precisely what Keene did by naturalizing, getting his own koseki, and then adding his partner to it.  So in this worldwide wave of tolerance/reactionary intolerance towards gay marriage, gay rights is another issue Keene could use his influence to raise awareness about (and before you say he’s too old to do so, consider George Takei).  But no.

    Again, these are all a person’s life choices, and I will respect Keene’s.  Except for the fact that he doesn’t respect others’ life choices (he should read “Yes I Can” by Sammy Davis Jr., and learn something about not denigrating other minorities in his position to advance himself, and then pulling up ladders of opportunity behind him). He doesn’t seem to be keeping his public promises.  His pandering to stereotypes about NJ, plus public gestures of self-hugging while making a show of his apparent self-sacrifices, are disingenuous upon closer inspection.

    I’m not in the habit of paraphrasing Depeche Mode (I’m famously a proud fan of Duran Duran), but maybe it’s time to start.  A stanza of “Everything Counts” applies here:

    “All for himself, after all.”

    That is not the best legacy for immigrants and former NJ to leave behind.  Arudou Debito

    =========================

    UPDATE OCTOBER 8, 2014:  Dr. Donald Keene reiterates his belief that NJ left in significant numbers after the 3/11 Disasters in Tohoku in a recent Yomiuri interview. Even though I demonstrated in a Japan Times column that this was not the case in April 2012.

    http://www.debito.org/?p=10081
    So much for his role as a scholar… 

    ////////////////////////////////

    Message Special / Donald Keene / My life now is the happiest that I ever had: Scholar
    Kunihiko Miura / The Yomiuri Shimbun
    11:11 pm, October 05, 2014
    http://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0001615967

    When the terrible things happened in Tohoku, and especially when I read that many foreigners who had lived in Japan, worked in Japan, were leaving the country, I was very angry, and I wondered what I could do to show I was different. (REST OF THE ARTICLE IN COMMENTS SECTION BELOW).

    14 Responses to “Donald Keene Center opens in Kashiwazaki, Niigata Prefecture. His life and library can be seen, for a price.”

    1. Bob Says:

      Not sure how I feel about criticizing foreigners in retaliation for their criticizing foreigners. Isn’t the right thing to do, to say “Now Donald, that wasn’t very nice” and then move on to focus on the good? If we accept the premise, that is, that we are morally obliged to engage in free love among foreigners on the grounds that we are part of the same in-group.

      The other day I was in the police station for a lost item and the policeman pulled out a kanji one would need to write on a form that he said most Japanese people can’t write, which is why he keeps a printout of it at the desk he is at. “If you can write this one without looking at it, you’d be about the level of Donald Keene,” he quipped. Congratulations to Donald Keene and all of his accomplishments in life and literature, and for the awareness he has brought to Japanese people that foreigners can learn Japanese too.

      – Yes. But Keene clearly did this while denigrating others, in public. He made some very serious research mistakes, and hasn’t owned up to them. So others may focus on the good (and I have acknowledged the good as well), but I will remind people that he has some outstanding amends he needs to make before the clock runs out.

    2. Loverilakkuma Says:

      I know he opened his public library in the north Tokyo last year. So, he’s planning to extend his careen windshield elsewhere in Japan under the name of “public fund-raising entity. Sounds like private philanthropy business to me. Oh, here’s the best quote from his role model(Ayn Rand)’s SF epic. I can give to describe what kind of person he is.

      “Mr. Keene, what is it that the foulest bastards on earth denounce us for, among other things? Oh yes, for our motto of ‘Business as usual.’ Well—business as usual, Mr. Keene!”

      -Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged, Part 1, Ch. 7(Mr. Keene is impersonating Mr. Ward :D )

      – Not sure I get the quote.

    3. Jim Di Griz Says:

      ‘he should read “Yes I Can” by Sammy Davis Jr., and learn something about not denigrating other minorities in his position to advance himself, and then pulling up ladders of opportunity behind him’.

      On that basis, shouldn’t he be the subject of a biography titled ‘No You Can’t’?
      After all, I can only assume that months of trying to get Tokyo University (or some such) to build a lovely new ‘Donald Keene Wing’ for their library to house his (donated at a price perhaps?) books fell through.

      I guess that Don’s ‘pay-per-view’ library (and the profits from the pockets of visitors- would love to see which universities are lining up to enforce compulsory trips for certain classes BTW) will be an inheritable cash cow?

      Shouldn’t Don have made a true altruistic gesture to the country he feels he is a part of ‘in his heart’, by donating his library to whatever university was most badly damaged by the tsunami or something? It seems a bit lame for an academic to charge people to see his book collection. Is there a ‘no touching’ rule?

    4. Jon Says:

      Sounds like a wonderful new library, and I wish Donald Keene all the best.

    5. Debito Says:

      Dr. Donald Keene reiterates his belief that NJ left in significant numbers after the 3/11 Disasters in Tohoku in a recent Yomiuri interview. Even though I demonstrated in a Japan Times column that this was not the case in April 2012.
      http://www.debito.org/?p=10081
      So much for his role as a scholar…

      ////////////////////////////////

      Message Special / Donald Keene / My life now is the happiest that I ever had: Scholar
      Kunihiko Miura / The Yomiuri Shimbun
      11:11 pm, October 05, 2014

      http://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0001615967

      This is a special installment of our “Message” series. Today’s interviewee is Donald Keene, a prominent scholar of Japanese literature. While teaching at Columbia University, he spent about half of the year in Japan. But shortly after the Great East Japan Earthquake in 2011, he expressed his intention to become a Japanese citizen and spend the rest of his life in this country. In this interview, he talks about his life and thoughts after that event and his recent works on Japanese literature.

      ====================

      When the terrible things happened in Tohoku, and especially when I read that many foreigners who had lived in Japan, worked in Japan, were leaving the country, I was very angry, and I wondered what I could do to show I was different. My whole life has been involved with Japan. Whether I write in English, or write in Japanese, the subject is almost always about Japan. I am much better known here than in the United States. Here I can hardly get into a subway train without somebody asking if I am Donald Keene. Nobody asks me in New York. I feel very close to the Japanese, and I wondered what I could do to show this appreciation. And the one thing that I could think of was to become a Japanese citizen, although I had received permanent residency in Japan. I wanted to show that I had very special connections with, and deep feeling for Japan and the Japanese.

      Sometimes people ask me, how it’s changed me. It changed me in one particular way. As long as I was not a Japanese citizen, I was a guest in this country. And as a guest, I did not think it was appropriate for me to criticize. But having received Japanese citizenship, I felt that there is no reason I couldn’t express myself. If I thought something was wrong, or something should be done, I thought I was entitled to say so.

      For example, I have criticized the fact that the people who were victimized by the tsunami and so on still haven’t gotten proper housing, although a lot of money is being used for other purposes, which, in my opinion, are frivolous.

      And then I criticize, without any success, the teaching of Japanese literature at high schools in Japan. The teaching of Japanese literature especially at high school, which is the only time that most people get classic literature, is shocking. It is on the whole nothing more than the teaching of Japanese grammar. People learn all the grammar of “Genji Monogatari” (The Tale of Genji), but they don’t read “Genji Monogatari.” They don’t know what goes on in it. They know “koso,” “zo,” “nan” (linking particles in old Japanese); what they do to the verb. I think this is a terrible way to teach. The teaching of Japanese literature is geared to the nyugaku shiken (university entrance examination), which asks those questions. The result is that now the least popular subject in Japanese high schools is Japanese literature.

      Japanese literature is a wonderful literature. If it were a bad literature, if it were something you read only for patriotic reasons, then it could be forgotten. But it’s a great literature. One should not be guided by those whose professional interest makes them insist that one can only understand “Genji Monogatari” in the original. That’s a lie. You can read it and understand it in modern Japanese, you can read it and understand it in English, and you can read it and understand it in Burmese.

      I read the translation of “Genji Monogatari” by Arthur Waley, when I was 18 years old. It was a time of warfare in Europe. It was a time really of despair. I bought the book without knowing what it was. I read it, and it saved me. I was fascinated with the importance of beauty, beauty of every kind. The characters are also interesting. Genji is an extraordinary character. He dresses beautifully, he writes poetry beautifully, he is capable of everything. And above all, he is good to people. Each woman is different, and he loves each woman in a way that pleases the woman. And he never forgets anybody. “Genji Monogatari” is read all over the world. People find that, although it is a work about a thousand years old, it still moves us. It would be ironic if the one language in which it is not read is Japanese.

      There was a golden era of Japanese literature after the war. The Japanese who had been under censorship of the military were able to write freely. Old writers were writing. Tanizaki Junichiro wrote “Sasameyuki” (The Makioka Sisters). Nagai Kafu was writing. Shiga Naoya was writing. Kawabata Yasunari was writing. And young people, Mishima Yukio, Abe Kobo, Dazai Osamu, all these people were coming up. It was an extraordinary period, comparable to the Genroku period [1688-1704], famous for three people: [Matsuo] Basho, Chikamatsu [Monzaemon] and [Ihara] Saikaku.

      At present, my impression is that it is not a good time for literature. When I look at the names of writers, most of them are not familiar to me. It’s hard to say who is the best writer now, or whose books I want to read.

      The only writer who goes on without much change is Shiba Ryotaro [1923-1996]. He is the only one who has survived. People of every class read him, and everybody recognizes him except the critics. The critics don’t recognize him as a writer. In histories of postwar literature, he is not mentioned. He is considered a journalist, not a writer. It’s a strange situation. Anyway, I don’t think it is a good period for literature. But it doesn’t mean there won’t be good literature next year. And it is also possible there is good literature, but we don’t recognize it yet. We don’t realize how unusual it is. It may be that we’re not ready. Writers are ahead of us. We haven’t caught up to them. That’s possible.

      I think manga is depriving young people of the pleasure of reading real literature. I hope people would return to the written world and the beauty of the past. And get rid of katakana. Katakana should be abolished. The Japanese language is a beautiful language, and is capable of every kind of expression.

      My principle work now is writing a book about Ishikawa Takuboku [1886-1912]. The book is now being serialized in Japanese in the magazine Shincho. It will go on for another at least six months. I hope that I can write a book that people will appreciate Takuboku as a person who was a great poet and who had very strong thoughts. I published a book about Masaoka Shiki [1867-1902] two years ago. To use Japanese words, I think of Masaoka Shiki as kindai-teki (modern) and Ishikawa Takuboku as gendai-teki (contemporary).

      What is the difference? Shiki was born to a samurai family, and always thought about being a samurai. He still had feet in the past, samurai traditions. At the same time, he created a revolution because he changed the content of the haiku. He wrote about what he has seen, what has impressed him or what other people have done. He made the haiku available for modern literature. If there had been no Masaoka Shiki, both the haiku and tanka might have disappeared.

      When it comes to Takuboku, on the other hand, this is someone who is one of us. He is a contemporary of ours. We don’t feel any distance between us. He was free of old traditions, has no religion. He said he was an atheist. He read English very well, and he could also write in English. His English is not perfect, but it’s very interesting. He thinks in unusual terms. The book Masaoka Shiki was reading at the end of his life was Benjamin Franklin’s autobiography. What was Takuboku reading at the same time? It was a drama of Ibsen. On the same day, these two men would be reading these two different things. That shows an extreme difference between a kindai-man and a gendai-man.

      I think people do appreciate the poetry of Takuboku. I had a request from the present American ambassador, Caroline Kennedy. She’s very interested in Japanese poetry and she said she’d like to read Japanese poetry in English. I recommended to her translations of Takuboku by a former student of mine named Carl Sesar. I had a letter from the ambassador, saying she and everyone else was reading Takuboku now at the embassy in Tokyo. Everybody is excited about Takuboku.

      I’m lucky, at the age of 92, I still can read and write. But still, there is a limit. I have good days and bad days. Apart from that, my life now is the happiest that I ever had. I’m really happy here. I hope this continues.

      It used to be that people here in the neighborhood would recognize me as the only non-Japanese living in this neighborhood. But after they heard that I became a Japanese citizen, all changed. They say in Japanese, “Kaze hikanai yoni” (Be careful not to catch a cold). I have a gravestone at a temple in the neighborhood, and have arranged to be buried there. The temple is quite beautiful. It’s beautiful all year around.

      Interviewer: Japan News Staff Writer Rieko Mohara

      (In this interview, the last names of Japanese authors come first as the interviewee referred to them in that way.)

      ======================
      Interviewee’s profile

      Born in 1922 in New York, Keene began studies on Japan at Columbia University, and took Japanese-language classes at the U.S. Navy’s language school during World War II. He has published a number of books both in Japan and the United States, including “Anthology of Japanese Literature” and “Emperor of Japan: Meiji and His World.” He obtained Japanese citizenship in March 2012.

    6. Jim Di Griz Says:

      Oh dear. How sad.
      I think the age is getting to his brain;

      ‘when I read that many foreigners who had lived in Japan, worked in Japan, were leaving the country, I was very angry, and I wondered what I could do to show I was different.’

      Well he found a way! See below;
      ‘As long as I was not a Japanese citizen, I was a guest in this country. And as a guest, I did not think it was appropriate for me to criticize. But having received Japanese citizenship, I felt that there is no reason I couldn’t express myself. If I thought something was wrong, or something should be done, I thought I was entitled to say so.’

      So, taking Japanese citizenship enabled him to get over his ‘guestism’ and realize his inalienable human rights (bit slow on the up-take, I think), but wait, now that he has citizenship, what are these issues that he now ‘feels entitled’ to speak out about? Oh, that’s right! ‘Gaijin’ bashing. Thanks for nothing you doddering old navel-gazer.

    7. Jim Di Griz Says:

      Seriously though, Donald keene paints himself as such a hero- the Japan loving ‘gaijin’ who through hard work and perseverance came to ‘understand Japan’ and ‘feel it in his heart’, and therefore just knew that his being in Japan after the Tohoku disaster would be such an effective show of unity, that the people of Tohoku would stop worrying about their lost loved ones, homes, and livelyhoods, and the triple nuclear meltdown once he shared some poetry.

      Not only that, but it would restore the people of Tohoku’s basic faith in humanity after so many NJ left the country when they realized that TEPCO and the J-gov weren’t reliable in terms of relaying information to the public, nor taking action to contain the disaster.

      What Donald Keene seems to have forgot to mention this time, is that like 30,000 other Japanese in the 3 months after the disaster, he took off and left the country! 6 month cruise! (I guess that doesn’t fit the ‘hero of Tohoku’ image he’s trying to project).

      Why don’t you just come clean, Keene?
      Tell the truth!

      The timing of the Tohoku disaster was a coincidence that had no effect on your decision making process.
      You took Japanese citizenship so that you could be adopted by your same sex Japanese partner. You got adopted because a same sex marriage wouldn’t be recognized under Japanese law. You needed the legal familial connection to dodge inheritance tax liabilities.

      It’s not rocket science. You are a self-serving, vainglorious petty old man with a selective recollection of the truth, at best!

    8. Paul Says:

      “Dr. Donald Keene reiterates his ‘_belief_’ that NJ left in ‘_significant numbers_’ after the 3/11 Disasters in Tohoku in a recent Yomiuri interview. Even though I demonstrated in a Japan Times column that this was not the case in April 2012″ (emphasis supplied).

      Followed by the not so veiled insult
      “So much for his role as a scholar …”

      Nothing else in this article relates to this, so you must be referring to this quote:

      “When the terrible things happened in Tohoku, and especially when I read that many foreigners who had lived in Japan, worked in Japan, were leaving the country, I was very angry, and I wondered what I could do to show I was different.”

      The words “I believe” or “belief” or “it’s certainly true that” appear nowhere in Keene’s statement. He states that “I read that many foreigners … were leaving the country.” He doesn’t elaborate on whether he believed it at the time, or stands corrected now, but is talking about something that he read (in the past) and acted on (at the time).

      Also, “in significant numbers” is a similarly vague but more reaction-evoking term than “many,” which I guess could mean anything from about seven to two hundred or so, and I don’t think there is much to be gleaned (in a scholarly manner) from such words.

      It seems to me that he was motivated by something that he read (whether or not it was later proven to be untrue) and acted altruistically in response to what he read. I see no reason to lambast the guy (on and on) because of that.

      – I do. It’s poor research. He’s been proven wrong statistically yet clings to the belief. And it is a belief. It is not a fact. And it was significant enough a number to allegedly influence his decision to emigrate.

      Okay, I’ve done today’s duty of dealing with a pedant. An angel in heaven claps in appreciation for my good deed. Now back to real life.

    9. Loverilakkuma Says:

      I think this man should deserve the Top 5 Bafflers List in Japan. His self-portrait essay sells pretty well with his special aroma that makes like-minded people feel ecstatic like Ayn Rand lovers. It’s all about self-aggrandizement. He talks about his self-accomplishment as a foreigner in the first place. His decision to come to Japan has nothing to do with 3/11. He frequently visited Japan and even stayed there for a decent amount of period.

      He describes his aesthetic interest in Japanese literature and brags about his expertise in that as if he was leading its academic community in his adopted country.
      Right to criticize Japanese education? Good for you. Except that your voice falls on the deaf ears of clueless, mind-numbing MEXT officials who make robo-calls on curriculum and instruction nationwide.

      Sorry, Donald. You are no Donald Richie. No John Dower. No Chalmers Johnson. No Dinane Ravitch. No Robert Reich. You are just one of those caricatures in the cultural façade. You should be very happy if your name would be picked up in the Baffler magazine or Salon in the future.

      Blog about that, Mr. Keene.

    10. Loverilakkuma Says:

      #Paul, #8

      Funny you are making nit-picking on words Debito uses for the description of Keene, but you do not even bother to apply your critical lens to what Keene says in the entire piece.

    11. Paul Says:

      Debito’s efforts and accomplishments I admire. I disagree with him on this issue, but that doesn’t mean that I am a pedant or a nit-picker.

      @Loverilakkuma #9: I haven’t the expertise to quibble over the other statements made in Keene’s interview, and in relation to katakana, having hated it myself for many years (as if every foreign-derived word needs to be spelled in italics), I agree with him. Then again, katakana is a Heian era creation, so it has its own profound history. Abolition is a bit strong, but certainly its contemporary over usage is deplorable.

      I will also concede that Keene may have engaged in “poor research” by reading a NYT article (“More Foreigners Are Seeking to Flee Japan,” March 18, 2011), accepting it to be true, and acting on it by moving to Japan to show his support for a country and culture he has grown to love. But if I were to levy a poor research critique, I would levy that critique much more strongly on the reporters who wrote the article (those with professional responsibility) than the reaction it provoked in Keene.

      What I dislike a lot more are the ugly ad hominmen statements made toward Keene, which I see as ill spirited and mean, and equally poor researched, because who needs research to be mean spirited and simply insult another human being.

      Perhaps its just me, but for a nonagenarian who in his younger days introduced a wealth of Japanese literature to the world during his professional career, and then decides for altruistic reasons (in his mind) to live in Japan, I grant him some leeway. He might have made a mistake, he might have come to Japan based on a false perception, he might be living under a delusion now, but if his reasons for doing so were kind and generous ones, I don’t think he deserves to be called ugly names (“age is getting to his brain,” “doddering old navel-gazer,” “self-serving, vainglorious petty old man”) for it.

      – Points taken about the catcalls in the Comments. But if he’s going to be mean-spirited and insulting in his comments towards other human beings (i.e., NJ who have contributed to modern Japan as an aggregate more than Keene has, if one-upmanship is necessary), then that’s what he will engender back, as I have argued in publications that he too can research and read. If your supposition is correct, an accomplished academic of his caliber nevertheless does not base his declarations on one newspaper article (one triangulates as data comes out over time, and that data has come out, proving his declarations wrong). And as demonstrated in this recent Yomiuri interview, his behavior and actions since then have made absolutely NO attempt to mollify his mean-spiritedness and disingenuousness, all archived on Debito.org.

      I understand you’re willing to cut Keene some slack for his history. Fine. I’m not so willing, and neither are those sniping back at him for his snipes. Then again, neither is Keene himself willing to cut NJ any slack, it would seem, despite the long history of NJ contributions to Japan that he has apparently nearly completely ignored. I see that side of his motivations neither kind nor generous, and Debito.org will continue to call them out when they resurface.

    12. Loverilakkuma Says:

      @Paul, #12

      >He might have made a mistake, he might have come to Japan based on a false perception, he might be living under a delusion now, but if his reasons for doing so were kind and generous ones,

      They are not. His voice falls on deaf ears of NJ and those who live in a completely different reality from his narrative. Keene is not even aware of his own mistake. He certainly does not really care how much Japanese teachers and students will have to suffer from MEXT’s robo calls and Abe administration’s national reform plan targeting the Tokyo Olympic Games in 2020.

      Sure he deserves utmost respect for his achievement from those studying Japanese literature. But that is quite different from what he has been doing upon ‘different’ group of people he does not really know. He made it very clear that he is “different” from those whom he assumed abandoned the country at the outbreak of 3/11. This is not the first time he bragged about his persona by stigmatizing NJ as antagonist in his narrative. He did it several times since 2011.

      One more appearance, and I will put him in ‘The Baffler’s List.’ Period.

    13. Jim Di Griz Says:

      @ Paul #12

      You can call it sniping and cat-calling if you want, but I’m saying that Keene repeatedly lies to the J-media about how he came to naturalize.
      He claims it was all about Tohoku, and uses this to repeatedly bash NJ.
      I believe it was all about inheritance tax, and don’t care what he translated.

    14. Paul Says:

      I think we can be on opposite sides of this issue and respect the other’s position, and I thank you all for giving me the opportunity to express my views.
      I don’t think I will be able to draw you over to my side, but I do think the attention on Keene is misdirected. Yes, you may have shown that the articles that appeared in the mainstream press were seriously flawed. But Keene may not have read your arguments or be aware of them, and therefore, why would he have any basis for revising his beliefs or retracting what he said? Unless you believe he has an onus to monitor your website or to have read your April 2012 commentary in the Japan Times, which I would suggest is tinged with a bit of hubris.
      The primary fault lies with the mainstream press who reported on it in the first place. And they have not retracted the article, or issued a clarification as far as I know. So why are you directing no ire towards them, but focus your attention solely on Keene, I wonder?

      – Again, because Keene is supposed to be A WORLD-CLASS SCHOLAR, who should be able to research beyond mere media hype!

      And remember the point being reiterated: Keene’s express reasons for naturalizing do not match his actions. Further, not only did he bash those NJ who allegedly left (they didn’t), he bashed NJ who stayed — as criminals (they aren’t)! All this meanness just to show himself in a positive light.

      Paul, I think you’re just being obtuse at this point. Bye.

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