The Corner

Gwen Again

I just received a phone call from PBS journalist Gwen Ifill about her October tweet on Sarah Palin:

Sarah Palin: party like its 1773! ummm,

Many conservatives (including me) have accused Ifill of thinking she had caught Palin in a gaffe for referencing 1773 instead of 1776, when in fact Palin was alluding to the Boston Tea Party of 1773 rather than the signing of the Declaration of Independence in 1776. I mentioned the tweet on a New York Times blog about the Civil War (of all places) as well as here on The Corner.

“My intention was not to mock Gov. Palin,” says Ifill. “I’ve never done that. I have respect for Gov. Palin as a political person. I thought her comment was a play on Prince’s song ‘1999′ and I was trying to indicate that. It turned out to be my rude introduction to tweeting rather than an innocent dash-off.”

Twitter has many virtues but nuance isn’t one of them. Ifill could have been a lot clearer; all of the misunderstandings are understandable. But I accept her explanation and join her in hoping that the misunderstandings now will end.

John J. Miller — John J. Miller is the national correspondent for National Review and the director of the Dow Journalism Program at Hillsdale College. His new book is Reading Around: Journalism on Authors, Artists, and Ideas.

Most Popular

Law & the Courts

Obstruction Confusions

In his Lawfare critique of one of my several columns about the purported obstruction case against President Trump, Gabriel Schoenfeld loses me — as I suspect he will lose others — when he says of himself, “I do not think I am Trump-deranged.” Gabe graciously expresses fondness for me, and the feeling is ... Read More
Politics & Policy

Students’ Anti-Gun Views

Are children innocents or are they leaders? Are teenagers fully autonomous decision-makers, or are they lumps of mental clay, still being molded by unfolding brain development? The Left seems to have a particularly hard time deciding these days. Take, for example, the high-school students from Parkland, ... Read More
PC Culture

Kill Chic

We live in a society in which gratuitous violence is the trademark of video games, movies, and popular music. Kill this, shoot that in repugnant detail becomes a race to the visual and spoken bottom. We have gone from Sam Peckinpah’s realistic portrayal of violent death to a gory ritual of metal ripping ... Read More
Elections

Romney Is a Misfit for America

Mitt’s back. The former governor of Massachusetts and occasional native son of Michigan has a new persona: Mr. Utah. He’s going to bring Utah conservatism to the whole Republican party and to the country at large. Wholesome, efficient, industrious, faithful. “Utah has a lot to teach the politicians in ... Read More
Law & the Courts

What the Second Amendment Means Today

The horrifying school massacre in Parkland, Fla., has prompted another national debate about guns. Unfortunately, it seems that these conversations are never terribly constructive — they are too often dominated by screeching extremists on both sides of the aisle and armchair pundits who offer sweeping opinions ... Read More
U.S.

Fire the FBI Chief

American government is supposed to look and sound like George Washington. What it actually looks and sounds like is Henry Hill from Goodfellas: bad suit, hand out, intoning the eternal mantra: “F*** you, pay me.” American government mostly works by interposition, standing between us, the free people at ... Read More