Lyle Rossiter, Jr.: RIP

Recently, I was informed by family members that my friend, psychiatrist Lyle Rossiter, Jr., had passed away at age 82 on July 28, 2019 at Central DuPage Hospital in Batavia, Ill., (formerly of St. Charles and Glen Ellyn) in the presence of his loving family. It saddened me personally, knowing I would no longer have the stimulating exchanges, both serious and humorous, that made our friendship such a delight. But I also understood the painful reality that freedom and liberty had lost a valiant warrior. But, as a few days progressed, I’ve found myself recognizing the larger perspective… namely, the gifts he left on understanding the modern societal battlefield, in particular, his piercing insight into the increasingly dystopian psychological makeup of the radical left that few were able to write about with such authority. This he put forth in his seminal work, The Liberal Mind, The Psychological Causes of Political Madness, coalescing his forty years of clinical and forensic experience, his thorough examination and synthesis of scholarly literature and his stint in the U.S. Army as Chief of Neuropsychiatry at Sandia Base in Albuquerque, NM, during the Vietnam War.

Along with articles on such subjects as suicide prevention and mental illness disorders, in the political arena Rossiter authored papers on such topics as “competence and freedom,” “subprime maturity,” “following the rules of ordered society,” “psychological images of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton,” and a topic near and dear to my heart, the themes of the radical left… themes that I wrote about in my own work, Immersed in Red, My Formative Years in a Marxist Household, which he graciously endorsed and which began our wonderful relationship.  These themes cut to the core of the misguided ideology of my own family and associates who were working so feverishly, many with the communist underground, to destroy America and bring us under the rule of Soviet Russia and Joseph Stalin.  Another theme that Dr. Rossiter was most passionate about to the end were the dangers of the collectivist mindset that eschewed autonomy and individualism, and the necessity of developing solid underpinnings for our society that promoted what he described as “ordered liberty.”

For those many people who are perplexed by how the collective zeitgeist of the modern radical left could so rapidly dislodge and replace more traditional and moderate liberal Democratic Party positions with their shouting, fist-pounding and in-your-face Saul Alinsky tactics, Dr. Rossiter was able to clearly describe the complexities. He explained how the collectivist-leftist clenched-teeth demands for cradle-to-grave caretaking, desires inbred in all humanity from the earliest child-parent relational stages, translated into an inability to mature into adult behavior; behavior that upholds freedom, autonomy, and personal and fiscal responsibility as the dominant script for societal well-being.  He further explained their blindness to reality and how in their zeal to protect humanity from the injustices of the world they implement programs that instead of creating independence and self-sufficiency, foster dependency and instability …year after year and decade after decade with nary a glance backward at the socialist horrors of the 20th-century authoritarian monsters and their demands for societal purification.

Dr. Rossiter was fully aware of the dangers of a society that embraced moral relativity.  All of his writings subscribed to the idea that basic morality was built into the human psyche… do onto others, you shall not steal or murder or bear false witness, etc., all fundamental ideas that are the foundation of Judeo-Christian Western Culture.  He felt it was preferable to all other ways of thinking whether one was Christian or not.  He entertained all of human discourse, with grace, kindness, thoughtfulness and respect.  I will miss him greatly

Dear friend, may you rest in peace.

Mike Shotwell is the author of Immersed in Red (2016).

Recently, I was informed by family members that my friend, psychiatrist Lyle Rossiter, Jr., had passed away at age 82 on July 28, 2019 at Central DuPage Hospital in Batavia, Ill., (formerly of St. Charles and Glen Ellyn) in the presence of his loving family. It saddened me personally, knowing I would no longer have the stimulating exchanges, both serious and humorous, that made our friendship such a delight. But I also understood the painful reality that freedom and liberty had lost a valiant warrior. But, as a few days progressed, I’ve found myself recognizing the larger perspective… namely, the gifts he left on understanding the modern societal battlefield, in particular, his piercing insight into the increasingly dystopian psychological makeup of the radical left that few were able to write about with such authority. This he put forth in his seminal work, The Liberal Mind, The Psychological Causes of Political Madness, coalescing his forty years of clinical and forensic experience, his thorough examination and synthesis of scholarly literature and his stint in the U.S. Army as Chief of Neuropsychiatry at Sandia Base in Albuquerque, NM, during the Vietnam War.

Along with articles on such subjects as suicide prevention and mental illness disorders, in the political arena Rossiter authored papers on such topics as “competence and freedom,” “subprime maturity,” “following the rules of ordered society,” “psychological images of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton,” and a topic near and dear to my heart, the themes of the radical left… themes that I wrote about in my own work, Immersed in Red, My Formative Years in a Marxist Household, which he graciously endorsed and which began our wonderful relationship.  These themes cut to the core of the misguided ideology of my own family and associates who were working so feverishly, many with the communist underground, to destroy America and bring us under the rule of Soviet Russia and Joseph Stalin.  Another theme that Dr. Rossiter was most passionate about to the end were the dangers of the collectivist mindset that eschewed autonomy and individualism, and the necessity of developing solid underpinnings for our society that promoted what he described as “ordered liberty.”

For those many people who are perplexed by how the collective zeitgeist of the modern radical left could so rapidly dislodge and replace more traditional and moderate liberal Democratic Party positions with their shouting, fist-pounding and in-your-face Saul Alinsky tactics, Dr. Rossiter was able to clearly describe the complexities. He explained how the collectivist-leftist clenched-teeth demands for cradle-to-grave caretaking, desires inbred in all humanity from the earliest child-parent relational stages, translated into an inability to mature into adult behavior; behavior that upholds freedom, autonomy, and personal and fiscal responsibility as the dominant script for societal well-being.  He further explained their blindness to reality and how in their zeal to protect humanity from the injustices of the world they implement programs that instead of creating independence and self-sufficiency, foster dependency and instability …year after year and decade after decade with nary a glance backward at the socialist horrors of the 20th-century authoritarian monsters and their demands for societal purification.

Dr. Rossiter was fully aware of the dangers of a society that embraced moral relativity.  All of his writings subscribed to the idea that basic morality was built into the human psyche… do onto others, you shall not steal or murder or bear false witness, etc., all fundamental ideas that are the foundation of Judeo-Christian Western Culture.  He felt it was preferable to all other ways of thinking whether one was Christian or not.  He entertained all of human discourse, with grace, kindness, thoughtfulness and respect.  I will miss him greatly

Dear friend, may you rest in peace.

Mike Shotwell is the author of Immersed in Red (2016).