Saturday, March 1, 2008

C-J Speaks Ill Of The Dead, Who Had Better Manners

Today's Courier-Journal gives us a display of what can be charitably described as the editor's ill-bred manners. The C-J shows a picture of William F. Buckley, Jr. wearing a black mask "in 1966 at Truman Capote's famous black and white ball," accompanied by a letter to the editor calling Mr. Buckley a "monster" with "the legacy of pretentious snobbery, bigotry, homophobia and nastiness." Another letter writer asserts that Mr. Buckley

did nothing but expound hedonistic self- gratification, with a political agenda for maintaining the status quo at the expense of less fortunate fellow human beings.

He did this with clever tongue-in-cheek hypocrisy, which was sickening to all idealistic folk who care about fairness and justice.

There is such a sharp contrast in style between the C-J and Mr. Buckley, and clearly the latter comes out looking better. A piece by Eric Konigsberg of the New York Times provides insight:

Mr. Buckley’s manners were classy, if not perfect. He insisted on addressing his guests as “Mr.” Or “Mrs.,” though he once accidentally called Mrs. Thatcher “Margaret” because he thought she’d called him “Bill.” (When, upon reading a transcript of the episode, he realized she had been referring to a bill of legislation, he was extremely embarrassed, said Richard Brookhiser, a conservative writer and a frequent guest on the program.)

Mr. [Michael] Kinsley said, “He was extremely charming and kind; he never took his ideological battles into the personal realm.”

1 comment:

Bridget M. Bush said...

As for the C-J writer who called WFB a "monster," I would note the psychiatrists would call that a case of "projection," in other words, it takes one to know one.