The Political Interest: Straight Talk About Race

Straight Talk About Race

BACK IN THE DARK AGES, WHEN VICE PRESIDENT SPIRO Agnew attacked the press as "nattering nabobs of negativism," Eugene McCarthy agreed with Agnew's critique but disagreed with his right to say it. Authentic advocacy requires standing, McCarthy argued, especially in politics, where any fool can speak and every fool does. If record and reputation defy one's rhetoric, even the right talk fails the heft test. The same standard applies to the current Vice President. It is not that Dan Quayle's family-values sermon missed the mark; much of what he said was right. It is that Quayle represents an Administration that has...

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