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Here are some news stories and articles which might be of interest to you. I've posted the opening section, and if you want to read more, you can click on "Read the whole article" to go to the original item. You'll find a variety of things here -- current news, political analysis, opinion pieces, articles about religion -- things I've happened to read and want to share with you. It's your Reading Room, so take your time. Browse. You're certain to find something you'll want to read.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

The Boys Who Cry Racism

Will Jimmy Carter and company expose the hollowness of the tired old charge?

by Harry Stein

More than a few on the right are alarmed by the torrent of racism accusations that an all-star cast of liberal luminaries has directed at President Obama’s critics. “When people like Jimmy Carter and Maureen Dowd start saying this kind of thing, we’ve reached a whole new level of ugliness in our political discourse,” as one friend of mine puts it. “No charge in American life is so poisonous.” He’s got a point, of course—especially about the poisonous part. Yet as those on the other side spew the R-word with ever more irresponsible abandon, some of us find new reason for hope. Here’s a chance to lance the boil once and for all.

Genuine racism is a terrible thing, and for far too long it was a virulent strain running through our national life. This is so patently obvious that it scarcely bears repeating. Yet those of us who point out how much our nation has changed for the better invariably feel obliged to repeat it, early and often, lest our very sense of optimism about race relations make us subject to the charge. So while we’re at it, let’s dispense with the other essential pro forma acknowledgment: yes, even in today’s America, traces of the vilest racism persist in some dark hearts and twisted minds.

But those liberals who’ve lately been issuing the racism charge so promiscuously (speaking of aberrant hearts and minds) are aiming it not at skinheads living in their parents’ basements or at would-be Klansmen, but at decent Americans with the temerity to object to presidential policies that they believe would damage both the quality of their lives and the nation itself: in short, at Americans acting in the best tradition of democratic citizenship. This is so preposterous that literally millions who’ve never before given the matter any thought are taking notice...   Read the whole article.

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Fr. Phillips is the founding pastor of Our Lady of the Atonement Catholic Church, the first Anglican Use parish, established on August 15, 1983. Not that there is any confusion, but he is on the left, shown in his younger, less gray-headed days.