Ten years or so ago, a woman named Andrea Lavigne sat in on some media survey classes I was teaching at Wayne State University.
She was in her late 30s or early 40s, and seemed to be searching for answers. She wanted to know how the media work, and told me she was a Maoist.* This fascinated me, because I thought authentic Maoists were almost as rare as passenger pigeons.
Chairman Mao, we now know, starved to death and slaughtered tens of millions of his own citizens, and kept China economically and intellectually backward. Intrigued, I got together one night before class with her and another Maoist, to find out what they were all about. Alas, they spouted a form of primitive, grade-school Marxism.
They seemed to have very little historical knowledge of Communism or what it had actually been like.
Three years ago, I got a friendly email from Ms. Lavigne telling me she had now founded a marijuana film club.
Well, Andrea Lavigne has a new cause now: She wants to get the city of Grosse Pointe Park to outlaw the weekly newspaper, The Metro Times, because it has sexually oriented ads.