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George Will (1941-), Syndicated Columnist and Conservative Political Commentator

The Hersch

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This column came out today:

"Out with Redskins - and Everything Else!" by George F. Will on washingtonpost.com

Will mixed up some valid points along with some reductio ad absurdum, as he seems to have a tendency to do - he's a smart guy; I wonder what he would say about Roger B. Taney Middle School educating a nearly all-black student body.

I'd say "he's a smart guy" assumes facts not in evidence.

But yeah, naming something after James Madison is just the same as calling a football team the Redskins. Please. Back before the Montreal Expos actually moved to Washington and acquired their current team name, there was a lot of speculation about what the team name would or should be. I always argued that, in the spirit of the name of the NFL team, they should be called the Washington Darkies. Would that have been okay with Will? If not, what distinction would have made "Redskins" okay but put "Darkies" out of bounds?

Sorry to seize on this one point in your moving reflection on your young, lost friends. As to what Will would say about a school full of black schoolchildren named after Justice Taney, he would pretend not to hear the question.

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