Cultural Revolutions

Childish Ideologues

The NAACP vows to campaign against every senator who voted to confirm John Ashcroft as attorney general. Oh, how we ought to hope so! Get out there, guys! Show us what dopes you're capable of being when you try hard!

Ideologues—e.g., the folk who run the NAACP these days—don't normally receive the attention they deserve. They deserve lots. Ideologues, for one thing, see life through a drinking straw: They want the rest of us to admire the same view.

If you salute or throw yourself prostrate on the ground in humble acquiescence to the NAACP's grand design, fine; if not, you're evil—wicked—racist (in the NAACP's grotesque formulation). Founded in 1909 to campaign for the equality of Negroes and whites, the NAACP today is an ideological money machine. That is, it exists seemingly for the purpose of scaring or outraging so thoroughly that Americans reach for their checkbooks, scrawl "NAACP" after "Pay to the Order of," drop this sacred communication in the mail, and thereby gladden the heart of NAACP President Kweisi Mfume, whose business it is—daily it seems —to invent new causes of fright and outrage.

Pretty unedifying. The NAACP itself has become unedifying in the extreme, about as much in tune with real life as the Anti-Saloon League.

Ashcroft as devil figure—even Ted Kennedy couldn't get away with that one. though...

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