The Corner

What’s Stephen Carter Talking About?

He makes two baffling comments in his NYT op-ed on affirmative action.

First:

It was not always this way. From the early years of the nation’s founding through somewhere in the mid-1970s, racial injustice was the fundamental moral question of American politics. Through wars and depressions, through scandals and disasters, the attention of the American people was repeatedly yanked back — at times forcefully — to the divide between black and white.

So this question had the attention of the American people from 1880-1940? Where’s the evidence?

Second: “For its part, the Republican Party, last seen fighting tooth and claw against efforts to extend the Voting Rights Act, continues to oppose what activists like to call throwing money at the problem of poverty.” Tooth and claw? The latest extension was approved by a Republican Congress in 2006, with the support of the congressional Republican leadership and President Bush. It passed the Senate 98-0.

Ramesh Ponnuru — Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.

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