JIVING WITH THE JACKSON TWO: Jonah Goldberg’s latest syndicated column in The Washington Times takes on the Jackson Two: Jesse and Michael. Here are a couple of excerpts:
The first Jackson, the Rev. Jesse Jackson spoke at the 93rd annual meeting of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People this week. He called President Bush and Attorney General John Ashcroft “the most threatening combination” to civil rights in his lifetime.
Now, Jackson was born in 1941. In the last 61 years we’ve seen some daunting combinations: Hitler and Tojo, Captain and Tennille, Darth Vader and the Emperor – oh wait, that Star Wars stuff happened a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, long before Jackson was born.
I know, I know: I’m deliberately misinterpreting Jackson’s point. He was talking about African-Americans and the threats they face here at home. But, you know what? That assertion is batty too. George Wallace and J. Edgar Hoover formed a pretty daunting combo. So did Bull Connor and his dogs.
Meanwhile, the tag team of Bush and Ashcroft have done exactly nothing to threaten African-Americans – unless of course you think fighting terrorism, appointing blacks to the highest levels of government and letting Ted Kennedy write the administration’s education policy is somehow the same thing as siccing German shepherds on black kids in Selma.
* * *
While it’s tempting to be outraged by the cynicism of the Jackson Two, the more appropriate response is relief. You see, such desperation is a clear indication that the battle for civil rights has been won. These tired has-beens have to imagine transgressions because there are no real ones to complain about. It’s sad for them, but happy news for the society as a whole.
In the words of the immortal Gary Cooper, yup.