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Liberal William Manchester Turns on ACLU and PC ism
NewsMax ^ | 2/25/2002 | Carl Limbacher and crew

Posted on 02/25/2002 10:50:03 AM PST by NormsRevenge

William Manchester, described by the Palm Beach Post as "a historian with [a) giant reputation for impeccable research and clear thinking" sounds a lot like Rush Limbaugh these days instead of the author notorious for his ultra liberal views.

Interviewed by the Post about the current ACLU and allied leftist campaigns to banish George Washington's portrait from school rooms, Manchester thunders "Oh, God, hang the portrait." during a phone interview.

Responding to the news that the American Civil Liberties Union says hanging the portrait amounts to forced patriotism the old liberal revealed that "I ceased my affiliation with them a few years ago. "It's all about guilt now. Guilt. Victims and guilt."

Asked to explain, Manchester said he didn't know why that's so. "But we're supposed to feel guilt about things that happened or are said to have happened in the faraway past. Do you know what George Washington's real sin is for these people? He was a white, Anglo-Saxon Protestant. Period. He doesn't fit in with today's prescribed correctness. Hang the portrait. Maybe some child will see it and ask a teacher, `Who's that?' And then that child might just get a history lesson."

When asked how important history is he said "A fundamental premise for a functioning democracy is that the citizens will be literate enough, educated enough to see through the bull, know what's good for the democracy and what's dangerous. Washington embodied that premise, championed it.

"If you let education slide in schools and in the home, if your citizens are not aware of their own history, you open the door for self-appointed arbiters of truth," he warned. "And their so-called truths may not be true at all. It's a bad thing. The real question here is: Are our children learning enough history in school? I think not.

"But," he added "it must be good history, real history. Bad enough we don't teach more about World War II in our schools, for 55 years the Japanese have gotten away with teaching a false history of the war in their schools." Manchester, an ex-Marine wounded in action by the Japanese on Guadalcanal in WW II added "To catch the lie you have to be educated."

Noting that "Manchester is an old FDR liberal, adviser to the Kennedys, loather of Richard Nixon," the Post said that he has never ducked controversy, and "actually wrote a book of essays titled Controversy. His other works included almost 20 other books about JFK, Churchill, Douglas MacArthur, the Krupp family, the Pacific theater in World War II, H.L. Mencken.

"But, wrote the obviously shocked and notriously liberal Post, "he's sounding as if maybe Rush Limbaugh sneaked into his house and purloined the phone."

"Truth trumps politics, or should," he says. "Some who call themselves liberals are not liberal thinkers. History has been appropriated, stolen. Hanging a portrait of George Washington shouldn't involve politics, guilt, revisionism. You look at the man and judge him worthy or not. Who's more worthy than Washington? Who else was there? Hang the portrait."

And while you're at it, he seems to be saying, hang PC liberalism along with it.


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS:
Kudos and SEMPER FI to you William
1 posted on 02/25/2002 10:50:03 AM PST by NormsRevenge
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To: NormsRevenge
Maybe he's trying to make amends for a lifetime of mindless liberalism before he dies and meets his Maker.
2 posted on 02/25/2002 10:53:41 AM PST by My2Cents
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To: My2Cents
Maybe he's trying to make amends for a lifetime of mindless liberalism before he dies and meets his Maker.

I don't think so. I think he's making an accurate description of "liberal" or "left" thought in America. It is essentially these days corporate liberal (Clintons, corporate globalism) or the moral posture of third worldism. Domestic middle classes, workers, etc. have rejected their self-appointed roles as arbiters of correctness and secular morality. To paraphrase michael Moore, they love humanity but hate humans - their exercise in alienated compassions and faux-altruism. In the old days they made a pretense of caring about the economic well-being people of the country, now there is little care, except when it can be channeled into some kind of pork-barrel program of the victimology lobby.

He says: "It's all about guilt now. Guilt. Victims and guilt."

He's right on target. Imagine what Hubert Humphrey of Johnson would think of today's narcissistic version of liberals.

3 posted on 02/25/2002 11:10:43 AM PST by Shermy
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To: Shermy
Manchester, at least and at last, has the courage to speak of his convictions.

I guess spending all the years he did documenting the convictions of churchill(The Last Lion) and macarthur(American Caesar) to name a couple of his books, finally caught up to him.

Call evil what it is.. evil .. and leave it at that..

If the liebrals are uncomfortable with that word, tough, It fits!!!.

The origins of the ACLU, and many other "caring legal foundations" are suspect... their goals .. evident by their fruits.. look at their behaviour...
4 posted on 02/25/2002 11:15:29 AM PST by NormsRevenge
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To: NormsRevenge
I think you're on to something.
5 posted on 02/25/2002 11:29:08 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks
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To: Shermy
Imagine what Hubert Humphrey ... would think of today's narcissistic version of liberals.

I doubt he'd be pleased as punch.

6 posted on 02/25/2002 11:44:21 AM PST by My2Cents
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To: NormsRevenge
"If you let education slide in schools and in the home, if your citizens are not aware of their own history, you open the door for self-appointed arbiters of truth," he warned. "And their so-called truths may not be true at all."

Manchester is of course correct about this. But what would Manchester suggest if a self-appointed arbiter of the truth got elected president, lied to the face of the people, the people knew that he was lying, but millions of those people stood up ... and defended the lies. What then Manchester?

You can over-educate people all you want, if they want to be lied to, there's not a whole lot left to say.

7 posted on 02/25/2002 11:53:16 AM PST by TimSkalaBim
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To: NormsRevenge
A shameless William Manchester bump for A World Lit Only By Fire, one of my favorite Rennaissance books...
8 posted on 02/25/2002 12:01:35 PM PST by Billthedrill
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To: brityank;joanie-f;mommadooo3;snopercod;Covenantor;CHATTAB
Bump.
9 posted on 02/25/2002 12:02:17 PM PST by First_Salute
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To: calypgin
To catch the lie, the analysis and evidence of it must be available.

Where lays the Washington Post, should also be found The Washington Times; to the extent we are able.

10 posted on 02/25/2002 12:09:48 PM PST by First_Salute
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To: First_Salute
a bump for real teaching of history.
11 posted on 02/25/2002 12:10:15 PM PST by rbmillerjr
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To: NormsRevenge
The article NewsMax quotes:

Desperately seeking George

By Paul Reid,
Palm Beach Post Staff

Thursday, February 21, 2002

Happy birthday, George. Sort of.

Seems some folks have a serious hang-up about hanging George Washington's portrait in public schoolrooms.

They don't like the idea at all. So much for birthday salutations (George's birthday is Friday). What's next, a campaign to take his mug off the dollar bill?

Do you remember when Washington's portrait hung high upon the walls of schoolrooms, post offices, banks and barber shops throughout this great land? No? Well, then, you must be under 40.

If you remember, you recall the burled mahogany frames, old-fashioned-looking they were. George was somber, his portrait a copy of the the famed Gilbert Stuart rendition. Back in 1932, on the 200th anniversary of Washington's birth, Congress said hang the portraits, and America hung the portraits.

Sometimes, George and Abe Lincoln would hang side-by-side, a little American banner connecting the frames. Sometimes, they'd hang alone. Often, a portrait of the current president would hang nearby or alongside -- FDR, Ike, JFK.

But that was yesteryear.

Last week, an informal search of Palm Beach County public schools, banks and post offices turned up a paucity of Washington portraits.

Jupiter Middle School has one up for Presidents' Day, one student reported. Norma Smith, a first-grade teacher at North Palm Beach Elementary School, told us about her annual George Washington breakfast and colonial program. George's portrait is on the wall at the "little red schoolhouse," the area's oldest schoolhouse, built in 1886, which is now used to teach fourth-graders about Florida history.

But the days of George on every classroom wall are long gone. And a clerk at the post office in West Palm Beach wondered if we were nuts when we asked whether Washington hung on their walls. They've got pictures of the 10 Most Wanted -- but not Washington.

So where'd the portraits go? And why? And why are some people getting all wrathy over proposals to put George Washington back up on the schoolroom wall?

The latest imbroglio began about a year ago when William Sanders, a New Jersey businessman, started copying and framing the Gilbert Stuart portrait of Washington. Sanders' goal: to convince schools in New Jersey and nationwide to hang the portraits, which cost him $250 each to produce. The response from schools has been tepid -- 60 of New Jersey's 2,400 schools said yes.

The opposition mounts

The response from opponents of Sanders' plan has been hot and heavy-handed. It's a controversy George could sink his wooden teeth into.

The New Jersey Education Association said hanging a portrait of one person excludes all others who helped win the Revolution. The association also objected to a legislative recommendation that experts from Mount Vernon help create a new history curriculum for New Jersey schools. Then, the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California said it's wary of forcing patriotism by hanging portraits.

Then, a historian from Oklahoma said blacks had a bad time of it back in George's day, so the portrait might not be appropriate. Then, the Organization of American Historians said Americans of all walks of life helped create our nation, so maybe a portrait of just one does disservice to all the others.

Even if that one is George Washington?

George was our first president, after all. He was the hero of the Revolution.

A USA Today article about this debate lines up numerous opponents on one side against poor Mr. Sanders alone on the other. Mr. Sanders comes across as a well-intentioned . . . nut.

Could political correctness be at play here?

We asked two historians with opinions honed by decades of dedication to rational, value-free thought and skeptical inquiry.

David McCullough, a historian's historian, recently told a Palm Beach breakfast audience that his admiration for Washington grew as he did six years of research for his biography of John Adams. McCullough saw Washington as far more than just the fellow who crossed the Delaware or camped out in the discontenting snows of Pennsylvania. He saw a general with enough political and military savvy -- a rare breed -- to take an amateur army underpaid by divisive, often greedy and frequently incompetent politicians all the way to victory over the world's greatest power.

Then, he presided over and nurtured the first democracy since the Golden Age of Greece, a fragile experiment detested by the rest of the world.

Washington kept the dream alive.

"George Washington was a great man, a classic case of the right man in the right place at the right time," said McCullough.

The first rule of good history, said McCullough, is for the historian to leave behind all 20th-century assumptions and prejudices before commenting on previous ages or historical figures. You can't judge Washington and Adams in terms of our world, but only in terms of their world. You make a mistake if you bring 20th-century race relations into an examination of blacks in the 18th century or into a study of Washington or Jefferson. If you look at John Adams through the eyes of 1990s feminism or judge labor conditions back then in terms of today's conditions, you're committing an error in method.

The way to avoid those errors, said McCullough, is to learn history, and learn to love learning history.

"When I did the Adams research," he says, "I lived with John and Abigail for six years. I studied the art, literature and theater of their time, food, travel conditions, politics, read their letters. What a wonderful opportunity it was."

But it's an opportunity not available to all the children all the time.

"Too many of our schools deny too many children even an introduction to history," said McCullough.

Manchester: 'It's all about guilt now'

William Manchester, a historian with so giant a reputation for impeccable research and clear thinking that even McCullough stands willingly in his shadow, has a lot to say about teaching -- or not teaching -- history in schools, and the thinking that lurks behind seemingly reasonable rhetoric. He hadn't heard of the Washington portrait dust-up but was apprised of the criticism by phone at his Connecticut home.

"Oh, God," he says. "Hang the portrait."

The American Civil Liberties Union says it's forced patriotism.

"I ceased my affiliation with them a few years ago," he says. "It's all about guilt now. Guilt. Victims and guilt."

How so?

"I don't know why. But we're supposed to feel guilt about things that happened or are said to have happened in the faraway past. Do you know what George Washington's real sin is for these people? He was a white, Anglo-Saxon Protestant. Period. He doesn't fit in with today's prescribed correctness. Hang the portrait. Maybe some child will see it and ask a teacher, `Who's that?' And then that child might just get a history lesson."

How important is history?

"A fundamental premise for a functioning democracy is that the citizens will be literate enough, educated enough to see through the bull, know what's good for the democracy and what's dangerous. Washington embodied that premise, championed it. If you let education slide in schools and in the home, if your citizens are not aware of their own history, you open the door for self-appointed arbiters of truth. And their so-called truths may not be true at all. It's a bad thing. The real question here is: Are our children learning enough history in school? I think not.

"But it must be good history, real history. Bad enough we don't teach more about World War II in our schools, for 55 years the Japanese have gotten away with teaching a false history of the war in their schools. To catch the lie you have to be educated."

Manchester is an old FDR liberal, adviser to the Kennedys, loather of Richard Nixon. He has never avoided controversy, actually wrote a book of essays titled Controversy. And almost 20 other books about JFK, Churchill, Douglas MacArthur, the Krupp family, the Pacific theater in World War II, H.L. Mencken.

But he's sounding as if maybe Rush Limbaugh sneaked into his house and purloined the phone.

"Truth trumps politics, or should," he says. "Some who call themselves liberals are not liberal thinkers. History has been appropriated, stolen. Hanging a portrait of George Washington shouldn't involve politics, guilt, revisionism. You look at the man and judge him worthy or not. Who's more worthy than Washington? Who else was there? Hang the portrait."

Happy birthday, George, wherever you are.

paul_reid@pbpost.com


12 posted on 02/25/2002 12:14:53 PM PST by LarryLied
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To: My2Cents
Manchester was a product of his times, a brave man and a disgusing liberal, I find it strange, for example, that both my grandfather and his father served in WW1, my father would have been about eight years older than Manchester, how they reached different political views.

I think that the answer is that Manchesters father, though poorly paid, never suffered through the depression, he was a socal worker and from a difunctional family, but he never really felt want, he saw it and he hated it but he never felt it.

I was amazed at the paralls in our family history that he discribed in his Marine Corps book, but the difference that I noticed was my family was in the west, from 1928 to the dy he died my grandfather never practiced his profession, Engineer, my father went to College on an athletic scholarship.

13 posted on 02/25/2002 12:19:06 PM PST by Little Bill
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To: My2Cents
In what ways was Manchester a "mindless liberal"? I have read several of his books and it's hard to divine any liberal leanings in them. Are you familiar with the man or his work at all? Is Newsmax?
14 posted on 02/25/2002 12:22:05 PM PST by motexva
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To: NormsRevenge
Manchester, at least and at last, has the courage to speak of his convictions.

He's always had that courage. The difference is that he somehow is a better person to some of you now because you agree with him on this issue.

15 posted on 02/25/2002 12:24:53 PM PST by sakic
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To: Billthedrill
That is one of my all time favorite history books, if not my favorite of all.
16 posted on 02/25/2002 12:25:53 PM PST by sakic
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To: My2Cents
The thing about old-line liberals like Humphrey, Manchester, etc., is that while you could strongly disagree with their economic and political views, you could never doubt their patriotism and love for this country. Today's liberals are a bunch of hedonistic, narcissistic navel gazers who only love themselves.
17 posted on 02/25/2002 12:34:50 PM PST by GB
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To: GB
What is your evidence Manchester was a liberal? It seems like people on this thread are talking a lot of trash about the man, but I have been searching the net for almost one half hour and I can't find any quote or biography of Manchester that leads me to believe he was overtly political in any way. Certainly the content of his books speaks to the conservative mind and outlook.
18 posted on 02/25/2002 12:40:23 PM PST by motexva
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To: GB
Amen. It is a shame too. They believed in this country. Their counterparts today are ashamed of it if not actively trying to destroy it.

A. Cricket

19 posted on 02/25/2002 12:44:07 PM PST by another cricket
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To: NormsRevenge
Interviewed by the Post about the current ACLU and allied leftist campaigns to banish George Washington's portrait from school rooms

I missed this one...anyone have a link to this story?

20 posted on 02/25/2002 12:45:19 PM PST by GuillermoX
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To: NormsRevenge
Is the whole basis of "William Manchester was a liberal" the fact that Manchester was an ardent supporter of JFK? Geez, my grandfather was a big JFK man and grandad was a rabid right wing democrat. And JFK wasn't especially liberal himself, was he?

I'm sorry, I'm not buying this assessment of Manchester. He probably was a Democrat like everyone else was back in the 40s, 50s and 60s. That doesn't make him a leftist. Reagan was a democrat in there too.

21 posted on 02/25/2002 12:48:01 PM PST by motexva
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To: sakic
He has never been a less of a courageous man in my eyes, don't misconstrue my choice of words.

But what is evident is that he has come to the realization that the enemies we fight within are just as determined as the patriots of this country to do their best to win what they see as a battle worth fighting.

I get criticized for not being tolerant toward liebrals, but in the end, their blind allegiance to hollow policies and feel good ethics is killing this nation.

Thank you William for framing the debate . Why do New Jersey schools not want George hanging around in their schools anymore anyway. Enforced patriotism, bull pukkie!!!

This isn't the United States of Marxism for cripe sake, but it is way too far down that road, and we don't have a lot of time to turn from the totality of the course , not with the rate the enemies within are waging their sordid deeds.
22 posted on 02/25/2002 12:48:03 PM PST by NormsRevenge
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To: My2Cents
Maybe he's trying to make amends for a lifetime of mindless liberalism before he dies and meets his Maker.

Oh, I don't know -- the first two volumes of his biography of Churchill mark him as a pretty good historian, regardless of his personal views.

23 posted on 02/25/2002 12:48:28 PM PST by r9etb
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To: motexva
I can't give you the specific cites, but I've read enough stuff about Manchester over the years to where he comes across as pretty much your standard New Deal liberal politically. And I don't think that's flaming or insulting him at all. Another thing about old-line liberals, at least in my experience with them, is that you could wage political combat with them, then leave it at the office and have a civil and cordial relationship with them away from the battlefield. Unlike today's venomous, hate-filled left. And if Manchester's political views don't come across in his work ... hey, we ought to be applauding him for that. Haven't we had enough, quote, "historians," unquote, put their own unique slants on things? Manchester has always played it straight, and that's the way it ought to be.
24 posted on 02/25/2002 12:51:09 PM PST by GB
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To: Little Bill
The liberalism of many WWII vets is understandable (unlike current liberals). Some were dirt poor. They had never seen a dentist and only rarely a doctor. Didn't have many clothes and food was scarce. When they joined the military it was a miracle to them. Food, doctors, new clothes, jeeps to drive, many saw their first dentist. There was wealth they had never imagined. On top of that, we won the war. Government worked for that generation.

No surprise that when the became civilians they thought the Feds could solve almost any problem.

25 posted on 02/25/2002 12:53:49 PM PST by LarryLied
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To: motexva
You nailed it this time ... the old-line liberals weren't leftists. Today's liberals are leftists. We fall into the trap of using those terms interchangeably, and I don't think they're interchangeable.

The term liberal is not a perjorative to me. It describes an old and honorable political philosophy which I do not happen to share. The term leftist, to me, is the perjorative, because that describes a mindset that is inherently destructive to this country and its values.

26 posted on 02/25/2002 12:54:22 PM PST by GB
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To: motexva
Believe me , there is a great distinction between liberals pre-nixon and post-nixon.

HHH and McCarthy(Gene) are some of the old breed, at least they didn't wear their demmie commie socialist armbands in public like the new breed of liebrals do.
27 posted on 02/25/2002 12:54:34 PM PST by NormsRevenge
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To: NormsRevenge
Manchester is not so much a liberal in the modern sense, but an old fashioned WASP. Accordingly, he's not into the anti-Americanism of the modern left, but feels strongly that all political power should be in the hands of rich, educated WASPs living in the northeast.

His old WASP habits are particularly evident in his superb biography of Churchill (rabid Anglophilia) and his so-so book on Krupp (rabid Germanophobia).

His "Goodbye Darkness" is one of the best US war memoirs ever written.

28 posted on 02/25/2002 1:00:17 PM PST by Seydlitz
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Comment #29 Removed by Moderator

To: NormsRevenge
Bottom line ... Hubert Humphrey was a good man with wrong ideas. An awful lot of today's liberals not only have wrong ideas but aren't good people.
30 posted on 02/25/2002 1:03:40 PM PST by GB
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To: NormsRevenge
Manchester is a national treasure, an honest and diligent historian who doesn't plagiarize. Read "The Arms of Krupp", "Goodbye Darkness" and his Churchill work for history that is impossible to put down. I have never been able to discern any particular political point of view in his writing. To anyone who hasn't read his books, do yourself a favor and read at least one. It is history as it should be written: Dense, researched beyond reproach and full of life. And...

...Semper fi!

31 posted on 02/25/2002 1:04:01 PM PST by clintonh8r
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To: LarryLied
Some were dirt poor.

I can understand the above, wht about those of us that were poor through circumstance.

In the Intermountian West the depression hit about four years before the general depression, noone ever felt poor. The attude was, things happen we are still together.

I have never been able to understand obsession of people with the deprression, my Grandmothers Family lost all in the panic of 1892 and we survived, there were 20 children, noone said it is all over I'm going to die..

32 posted on 02/25/2002 1:12:46 PM PST by Little Bill
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To: r9etb
Yeah, I agree on the Churchill biography. I have the "wilderness years" edition, and it's excellent....You know, when I read "New Dealer, and advisor to Kennedy," I thought Arthur Schlessinger. My mistake. Different liberal.
33 posted on 02/25/2002 1:31:42 PM PST by My2Cents
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To: clintonh8r
Read it. Read it . Read it. and SEMPER FI BTW

Boy .. did I call HHH and Gene McCarthy demmie commie socialists? And no one even called me on it? ( and Im a minnesoda native , to boot!)

I gotta lay off the coffee ...Or at least stay away from 100 dollar bill dragging leftists in gay socialist apparel! :-) ..There shur are a lot of 'em on this here conservative website. I rekkun it's where the action IS..after all
34 posted on 02/25/2002 1:50:30 PM PST by NormsRevenge
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To: NormsRevenge;all
See [posted at FR,] Losing Our History, from the National Review Online, by Rod Dreher, January 17, 2002:
Losing Our History

Ideology trumps truth.

January 17, 2002 8:25 a.m.

Has Brooklyn gone nuts? First there was the decision of the city's fire-department leadership to place a politically correct FDNY memorial statue outside department headquarters in downtown Brooklyn. Now the newly elected Brooklyn borough president, one Marty Markowitz, tells the New York Post that he's going to take down the portrait of George Washington that hangs in his Borough Hall office.

Markowitz, a Democrat, told the Post that he would probably replace the image of the "old white man" --- Markowitz's phrase for the Father of Our Country --- with a portrait of a black or a woman.


35 posted on 02/25/2002 3:19:25 PM PST by First_Salute
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