Andrew Ferguson's profile of Haley Barbour is attracting a lot of attention because Barbour's praise of the White Citizen's Councils of his native
Republicans then, he says, were the party of youth and progress—“made up of Jaycees and Boy Scouts”—in contrast to the Democrats, sclerotic from a century of single-party dominance and burdened with the legacy of segregation. “I was Republican county chairman when I was 25,” he told me, “and I was the oldest Republican county chairman in the state.”
That is the conservative view -- after the civil rights movement, association with segregation became a burden, even in
A second, related tic is a kind of petulant anti-anti-racism:
’s segregationist past might play in Barbour’s presidential campaign is hard to say. It could become an issue, particularly for Yazoo City Washingtonpolitical reporters who enjoy moralizing about race and public education while sending their own children to progressive schools like Sidwell Friends and St. Albans, where applicants of color are discreetly screened and their numbers carefully regulated.
Two things stand out about this passage. First, notice the way it deflects any substantive question about Barbour and race by quickly raising the issue only to immediately divert the reader's attention to loathed target, the elite
Next, this implied ad hominem attack on the
I don't know the answer. But I do think the fact that this kind of rhetoric is coming from