The Corner

What Would Jimmy Carter Make of Eric Holder?

From today’s Washington Examiner editorial on DOJ stonewalling the U.S. Civil Rights Commission regarding Holder’s dismissal of the Black Panther voter-intimidation case:

[W]e stumbled over a story from 1996 that tends to confirm this interpretation of Mr. Holder’s approach [i.e., the interpretation, that in Holder’s DOJ, top officials “openly and proudly advocate for a different standard” for the treatment of black citizens than for white citizens.] Oddly enough, the story concerned a case in which one of Mr. Holder’s chief critics was Malik Zulu Shabazz, one of the Black Panther defendants for whom the more recent charges were dropped. The case involved an assault on a white Washington Times reporter by a charter-school principal who is black. Back then, Mr. Shabazz accused Mr. Holder, who is black, of a sort of racial treason for prosecuting the black principal. “We are headed for a political, cultural and economic race war in the city of Washington,” Mr. Shabazz warned in reaction to the incident.

Mr. Holder told The Washington Post in 1996 that his answer was to pull out a paper he always carries in his wallet, containing a quote he admires that says a black man’s “race defines him more particularly than anything else. Black people have a common cause that requires attending to.” In case that is not disconcerting enough in its own right, Mr. Holder elaborated: “It really says that … I am not the tall U.S. Attorney, I am not the thin U.S. Attorney. I am the black U.S. Attorney…. There’s a common cause that bonds the black U.S. Attorney with the black criminal or the black doctor with the black homeless person.”