The Corner

Sacco & Vanzetti & Sinclair

Reuters has an interesting follow-up on the LA Times story about how Upton Sinclair was told Sacco & Vanzetti were guilty, but went on pretending they were innocent. It seems the full letter which implicated Sinclair is more complicated and there’s a new biography coming out which helps the pro-Sinclair crowd. The reporter for Reuters seems particularly interested in debunking my column which relied entirely in good faith on the LA Times story. The reporter may be right that I would have been better served if I’d read the full letter or had perused the as-of-yet unpublished book, but as neither of these things were available to me at the time, I’m not going to lose sleep over the issue. I’m not sure any of this is dispositive, but it’s worth noting that it now seems the case against Sinclair is less clear cut than the facts indicated at the time I wrote the column. However, I still think the record is pretty clear that Sacco & Vanzetti were guilty (though some claim Vanzetti was merely a conspirator-after-the-fact) and the larger point of that column remains perfectly intact. I’ll follow the story as it unfolds.

Jonah Goldberg, a senior editor of National Review and the author of Suicide of the West, holds the Asness Chair in Applied Liberty at the American Enterprise Institute.

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