Cultural Revolutions

Another Thurgood Marshall?

When Clarence Thomas, our newest Supreme Court Justice, asked to be sworn in a week before the official ceremony, so he could go on the payroll early, it summed up the whole affair for me. Why are conservatives cheering his ascent to the judicial oligarchy? Yes, it's fun to beat liberal senators, but not with a virtual ringer for one of their guys. Here was one of the most privileged characters in modern American society moaning about discrimination. He lofted through private school. Holy Cross College, Yale Law School, and increasingly important posts in the Reagan and Bush administrations, and to the Supreme Court itself at the age of 42. Why? As everyone knows but refuses to say, because of his race.

Justice Thomas is not only a racial victimologist, but a pre-1975 liberal. In his first set of hearings, for example, Thomas traduced the South of his youth, calling it "totalitarian," and whined about what a tough life he'd had because of his "black skin." Because of racism, his grandfather was called "boy," and his family had an "unworkable and unusable" outhouse.

The old South was one of the most courteous societies on Earth. Especially in interracial dealings, people were punctilious. That doesn't mean some boor didn't insult his grandfather, only that it wouldn't have been the norm. As to the outhouse, a fixture for many white and black Southerners of the time,...

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