Beth Henary of the Weekly

Beth Henary of the Weekly Standard reports on more lawless conduct by U.S. Civil Rights Commission Chairwomen Mary Francis Berry. This cranky leftist from the old school refused to seat President Bush’s nominee to the Commission until a Supreme Court ruling forced her to. Now she has caused to be issued a draft Commission report without having consulted four of the eight Commission members. The report concerns equal opportunity in higher education. Abigail Thernstrom, a distinguished scholar in the field and one of the unconsulted Commissioners, finds that the report contains major factual errors intended to support its pro-affirmative action agenda. This story shows why the Civil Rights Commission has not been taken seriously for years.
Ms. Berry has a place in the intellectual history of my family. In 1996, one of my daughters had to do her annual project for Black History month, this time on a leading contemporary African-American. Her teacher had suggested Berry. Horrified, and thinking much more quickly than I normally do, I pointed out that it would be much easier to find material on Alan Keyes, who was running for president at the time. Having thus made the sale to my daughter, I became concerned that her teacher might not be receptive to a project about Keyes. In the end, though, my daughter brought in a tape of a Keyes speech on C-SPAN and the teacher, enormously entertained, gave her an “A.” Ever since, we rarely miss a chance to see Keyes on television in our house.


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