"Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice" Barry Goldwater famously said. Sam Harris thniks that gun control advocates are "radicals."
Aren't extremists really just people who have had different life experiences? Or, are they just people out of sync with the mob? Particularly OUR mob.
To be in the 1 % who are actually right, does that make you a radical or extremist?
Quakers and 19th Century Republicans opposed slavery. They are called "radicals," even today. Does that mean that we are ok with slavery today? Apparently it does.
Galileo was a extremist, he thought the earth spun around the sun. A "moderate view" would have been to agree with the Pope, (The joke would have been on you, the Pope agreed with Galileo. He just had another agenda agenda.)
Likewise if you were against the Vietnam War, you would have been with Robert McNamara. He just didn't mention that it should not have been fought and could not have been won. He didn't want to upset LBJ.
Were Pasteur and Darwin and Einstein radicals? (When Einstein submitted his relativity paper for publication, it was rejected as being too radical.)
Could those terms just be about WHO IS SUFFERING?
If I suffer and try to do something about it, I am a "freedom fighter", like George Washington.
If you suffer and try to do something about it, you are a "radical" like...Geronimo, Martin Luther King, Jr, Hugo Chavez, Yasser Arafat, etc.
It can't possible be about violence, none of them could possibly have ever dropped as many bombs on people as we have.
Soooo.....ISN'T THAT REALLY WHAT THAT WORD MEANS?
How do we measure such things?
What do YOU think?