Tuesday, June 21, 2005

The Times on Byrd

The Times today has a good article about Senator Robert Byrd (D – WV), who has been a notable figure in the recent filibuster bust-up in the US Senate.

THE most venerated figure in the US Senate has told for the first time how the inspiration for his illustrious half-century of public service was a Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan.

Robert Byrd was a butcher in tiny Crab Orchard, West Virginia, when the Klan official was so impressed by his efforts to organise a KKK chapter that he urged him to enter politics.

This candid portrayal of Byrd and his Ku Klux Klan roots stands in stark contrast to the BBC’s favorable mention of Byrd in Justin Webb’s puff piece on the filibuster debate (noted by TAE here), in which Webb suggested that Byrd was “closer than anyone to the kind of senator the founding fathers had in mind”, gave voice to Byrd’s fond remembrances of his halcyon days as a filibusterer, and lamented that “Byrd’s right to ramble may soon be curtailed”. Needless to say, Webb failed to mention that the filibuster Byrd was so fondly recalling was his attempt to prevent the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, nor did he mention Byrd’s previous tenure as a Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan.

Kudos to The Times for filling in the UK on Byrd's past.


Blogger Tim Shell said...

"most venerated" Senator? Huh? What? The man's a laughingstock across the country.

12:38 AM  

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