Jump into the time capsule with me and return to 1991.
The news of the moment: Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, the first black Justice, announces his retirement.
The call goes up in the media that this is the “black seat” on the Supreme Court. President George H.W. Bush obliges by nominating Appeals Court Judge Clarence Thomas, an African-American.
And the liberal media not to mention liberal special interest groups went nuts. They made a point, for example, of giving ample coverage to one Florence Kennedy, the black head of the National Organization of Women who proclaimed this, with a reference to the several years earlier Reagan nomination of Judge Robert Bork, which became a television circus resulting in Bork’s Supreme Court nomination being defeated by liberal special interest groups in a well covered campaign . Said Kennedy of the African-American Judge Thomas:
We’re going to Bork him. We’re going to kill him politically-this little creep. Where did he come from?
In a blink the liberal media went after then-Judge Thomas. Former clerk Anita Hill, also black, was ballyhooed and given much TV time as she accused the Judge of sexual harassment. He was accused of being anti-Semitic, unethical, a draft dodger, keeping a Confederate flag in his office (it was not the Confederate flag, it was the official state flag of his home state of Georgia) and oh by the way he was accused of having smoked pot (a big no-no in the day).
Thomas wound up being confirmed after this massive battle royal, sitting on the Court to this day as a conservative icon. But the Thomas episode taught many Americans a useful lesson that comes back into play with the recently announced resignation of Harvard’s president Claudine Gay, an African-American woman.
Let’s suppose for a moment that to succeed Gay as Harvard’s president the Harvard Corporation picked another black woman - who happened to be a political conservative.
In fact, Megyn Kelly, host of “The Megyn Kelly Show” on SiriusXM has already thought about this. When the New York Post picked up on left-wing activist Marc Lamont Hill tweeting on X that “the next president of Harvard MUST be a black woman” the Post headlined:
Megyn Kelly jokes Candace Owens should be Harvard’s next president
The Post story reported:
Megyn Kelly quipped that TV frenemy Candace Owens should be Harvard’s next president following calls for Harvard to replace ousted president Claudine Gay with another black woman.
Gay, Harvard’s first black president, resigned Tuesday following months of pressure over her handling of antisemitism on the Ivy League campus following the Oct. 7 Hamas massacre in Israel and recent revelations that she plagiarized passages of her doctoral dissertation in 1997.
Her exit prompted charges from some quarters that racial animus was the motivating factor behind the movement to see her removed from her post.
Marc Lamont Hill, a left-leaning author, wrote on X, 'the next president of Harvard University MUST be a Black woman.'
Kelly, the host of ‘The Megyn Kelly Show’ on SiriusXM, jabbed back that Owens, a conservative black pundit who supported Donald Trump, ‘should be back from maternity leave in a couple months.’
Megyn Kelly joked that Candace Owens should be a candidate for Harvard University president.
Owens, of course, has made her career as a conservative activist and pundit and not as an academic, and scholar. So this would not happen.
But just suppose for a moment that Owens had in fact spent a career as an Ivy League academic. Would she ever have been chosen to be President of Harvard?
To say hell would freeze over would be to laughably understate the reaction a Professor/Dr. Owens nomination would receive.
The real story here in the matter of the Claudine Gay resignation is exactly the same story Americans learned through the media with Judge Thomas in 1991.
For the liberal media, to be “black” is to be synonymous with being “liberal.” Clarence Thomas underlined exactly the point years later in a documentary film when he reflected this, as the Post headlined in a review of the film "Created Equal: Clarence Thomas in His Own Words”
Clarence Thomas in new documentary: I was 'the wrong black guy' and had 'to be destroyed’
So as the Times and today’s liberal media moans and groans over the resignation of Harvard’s black female president, don’t believe a word of it. (And the Times brought Gay onto the Op-Ed page to opine on her situation, with Gay all too predictably blaming racism).
Yet if she were replaced tomorrow by a black, female academic who was a conservative they would waste no time trying to rip her to shreds just as they tried to do to Justice Thomas.
The liberal media, not to mention the Left in general, really does believe that if you’re black - or Hispanic, a woman or, in this day and age, gay - you must - MUST - be a lefty. And if for some reason they discover you are not - they will target you.
Indeed, in his recent take-down of his former paper, the Times one-time Executive Editor James Bennet - fired for having the audacity to run an Op-Ed by conservative GOP Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton - Bennet writes this of a conversation with Times publisher A.G. Sulzberger:
One day when I relayed a conservative’s concern about double standards to (Times publisher A.G.) Sulzberger, he lost his patience. He told me to inform the complaining conservative that that’s just how it was: there was a double standard and he should get used to it.
Its been 33 years since the resignation of Justice Thurgood Marshall and the media/political furor over the nomination of his African-American successor, Justice Thomas.
But as the resignation of Harvard’s Claudine Gay reminds, you can be sure that the more things change the more they stay the same.
Don’t expect to see a conservative - a conservative of any color or either gender appointed to take her place.
“Diversity” only goes so far.
Particularly in the liberal media.