Out-of-step intellectuals like Noam Chomsky and the deceased Edward Said have often been dismissed as crazy extremists, 'anti-American,' and in Mr. Said's case even, absurdly, as apologists for Palestinian 'terrorism.'
Sometimes you find your voice by trying to write like people, and sometimes you find it by trying to write unlike people.
I used to write a monthly column for the 'New York Times' syndicate. But I stopped because I found it really hard to have one extreme opinion a month. I don't know how these columnists have two or three ideas a week; I was having difficulty having 12 things to say a year.
Perhaps because my relationship with my father went through such a long, bumpy time, it's been very important for me to work to try to keep lines of communication open between my sons and myself to try to avoid my father's mistakes. At least if you're making mistakes, make different mistakes.