A letter I wrote to The New Yorker about Hawaii’s infamous Massie Affair, a sordid episode in American race relations, was printed in the June 27, 2011, issue and is at the bottom of this page.
I wrote the letter because: (a) I had recently read three thought-provoking books about racism in America during the early years of the 20th century and (b) the magazine’s profile of Clarence Darrow overlooked an important and defining episode that checkered the man’s career.
The first book, The Imperial Cruise: A Secret History of Empire and War by James Bradley, deals with Theodore Roosevelt’s foreign policy Continue reading “Clarence Darrow and Hawaii’s Massie Affair”
Scores of articles have been written to commemorate the 200th anniversary of Lincoln’s birth. One of the most interesting appeared in the February 2009 issue of Smithsonian magazine. I reprint it here in its entirety. The images and links are my choices.
Link to original article.
Lincoln’s Contested Legacy
Great Emancipator or unreconstructed racist? Defender of civil liberties or subverter of the Constitution? Each generation evokes a different Lincoln. But who was he?
By Philip B. Kunhardt III
From the time of his death in 1865 to the 200th anniversary of his birth, February 12, 2009, there has never been a decade in which Abraham Lincoln‘s influence has not been felt. Yet it has not been a smooth, unfolding history, but a jagged narrative filled with contention and revisionism. Lincoln’s legacy has shifted again and again as different groups have interpreted Continue reading “Lincoln’s Contested Legacy”