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Archive for the ‘apology’ Category

I’m really not enjoying the strange journey of race in the presidential election thing. I doubt many people are, save for the occasional Karl Rove, for whom it is a fabulous tactic – if you’re creative. I must admit to being surprised, though, to see the issue of reparations come up. It’s a nuanced and compelling issue, if one has the time to examine all of the folds. It’s about memory, state history, back wages, social justice, economics, the nature of representation, and so on. But that’s too much to ask. Turns out, sometimes a non-reparation actually is one.

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I’ll add to the huge number of editorials and blogs on Obama’s “big speech on race.” I read the transcript and watched a bit of it, but not without some regret that it had come to this moment. Why did Obama have to give this sort of speech? Who provoked it and why? But it was provoked. No going back from that. And he gave what, to my mind, was a solid and actually quite brave account of his relation to all sorts of pain. (more…)

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It has been awhile, but having now finished a big project, I’m back to regular blogging. And what better topic for getting back into it than the current election stuff. I do have a lot to say. In particular, about this strange ascension of Hillary Clinton and the genuinely baffling coverage of the “race.” OK, that’s a cheap pun, but I had to. I’ll pass over the saucier stuff on, say, Vincent Foster, whose case would send lefties over the edge (rightly) if the name had been Bush or Cheney, not Clinton. There are other things to discuss. (more…)

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I was driving home and listening to one of my least favorite shows on National Public Radio – Marketplace – when they did a short feature on history-buff tourism in the United States. A nice break from endless musings on the meaning of housing markets, loan rates, control of inflation, etc. The sort of stuff that bores me, but that’s just me. Also a nice break from the idea of tourism as simply blanking out one’s mind at a beach or amusement park. People going somewhere to learn something or see something they were taught about. Or, better, something about which they taught themselves. I like that. (more…)

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Yet again, we are treated to the distracting and delicious hypocrisy of the Right’s attack dogs. Yes, it again turns out that those self-appointed to watch over our morality have been doing the naughty stuff behind closed doors. Ted Haggard was an especially tortured case, and I felt conflicted about pouncing on his hypocrisy. But no such hesitation with David Vitter, conservative kook and prostitute lover from Louisiana. What more is there to say, really, than that Vitter is a big fake and pervert (defined with his terms alone)? (more…)

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What curious things we do with history, no? On the one hand, the United States (by no means an exception, here) is so much a culture of forgetting. We’d rather imagine the pain of the past to be from another world entirely (it’s not) than engage in a difficult conversation. On the other hand, there is stuff like this: the (re-) sailing of the Amistad, retracing the old slave trade route. That seems like a desire to remember. How couldn’t that (re-) sailing remember? Forgetfulness and the desire to remember. Both typical and unexpected. At the same time. (more…)

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I posted a week or so back on the two Flight 93 memorials – one actual, one in plan – in Shanksville, PA. In remembering so much sadness in one site, everything is at stake. This is only more urgent when we consider that this is our memorial, a national site of memory. And so The Weekly Standard’s headline was right to propose this statement, which is then the question answered by the article: “The Memorials We Deserve.” (more…)

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