Washington: Bell Tells A Sorry Story

Bell Tells A Sorry Story

Ronald Reagan's first Secretary of Education Terrel H. Bell resigned in 1984, weary of fighting with White House aides over his budget. In The Thirteenth Man: A Reagan Cabinet Memoir, to be published next year by the Free Press, Bell blasts unidentified "mid-level right-wing staffers at the White House" for a more disturbing characteristic: a proclivity for "sick humor and racist cliches." Examples: references to the late Martin Luther King Jr. as "Martin Lucifer Coon" and comments during discussions about the Middle East that Arabs were "sand niggers."

Though Bell did not accuse the President of making offensive remarks, the White...