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Content of their character, shmontent of their character

Identify the bigot who criticized a civil rights activist thusly:

"It is possible for a lot of people to find his colorblind message to be superficially appealing..."
Hint: it was said in 2003, not 1963. Of course, the hint gives it away; the only people who are no longer for colorblindness in 2003 are minority interest groups, and this was said by a senior member of the NAACP. They're criticizing Ward Connerly, who, in the wake of Sandra Day O'Connor's ruling on behalf of race preferences, is campaigning for a ballot initiative in Michigan to ban the preferences, just as he has successfully done in California and Washington. The NAACP is annoyed. But so are others.
Opposition to his efforts has already begun to take shape. A Detroit News editorial on Tuesday called a potential battle over affirmative action dangerous, and called on Mr. Connerly to go home.

"The divide in understanding between whites and blacks remains wide," it said. "Toss in a ballot campaign that pits the two races against each other and all hope for finally closing that divide will be lost."

Sounds just like officials from the Jim Crow South complaining about outside agitators stirring up trouble, doesn't it? It's never the racial policies that are the problem -- it's always the people trying to end them who are accused of "pitting the two races against each other."

By the way, I know there are those who insist that race preferences are necessary because of the racism still prevalent in the United States. So what to make of this?
The leaders of both of the state's political parties also opposed the effort.
In the Michigan cases before the Supreme Court, universities, major corporations, and retired military officers (and of course the editorial board of the New York Times) all weighed in in favor of race preferences in the service of "diversity." And in Michigan now, both parties are in favor. So much for principle.


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