ON A WARM and sunny spring day Bonnie Newman, then assistant to the president for management and administration of the Bush White House, ate lunch at the Occidental restaurant with two former presidential aides, Jonathan Miller and Christopher Hicks. The restaurant is one block from the White House. As 2 p.m. neared Newman announced that she had to get back to attend a Cabinet meeting. Miller and Hicks offered to walk her back. No need, she said.
When I was a kid in Minnesota my family had a huge Scandinavian feast every Christmas Eve, complete with two dozen relatives, three feet of snow, a mountainous evergreen trimmed to the top, a six-course dinner with lutefisk and turkey and eight or ten pies, long-winded after-dinner stories about baseball and World War II, and, of course, lots of brightly wrapped presents. It has taken me three decades of rigorous economics training and life on the East Coast to shake off the warm nostalgia of those holidays.
Following a dispute between a black "customer and a Korean merchant, blacks in a heavily Haitian part of Brooklyn's Flatbush section have been boycotting two Korean produce stores since the end of January. Protesters have kept the flow of customers to a trickle, vowing to drive the merchants from the neighborhood. Each side has made the inevitable Spike Lee allusions. In mid-May, in front of the Family Red Apple grocery store, a boycotter with a megaphone yelled, "Koreans must go. They should not be here in the first place.
Q&A Tri-Star There are fashions in slurs. When I was a schoolboy in New York in the 1920s, just at the end of the great wave of immigration to America, most of the slurs were national. Derogatory terms for Swedes, Irishmen, Hungarians, Poles, Germans, and Greeks, among others, were common; and of course each derogated group used slurs about the others. As time moved, as second and third generations were born, national slurring diminished. Three other derogations that were current then—national, supranational, and racial—still flourish: Italian, Jewish, and black.
A (Conservative) Case For Gay Marriage
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Andrew Sullivan’s 1989 cover story makes the case for legalizing gay marriage.