Anybody Heard of This Clown?

I received an odd email today:

Tonight on PBS’ Tavis Smiley, Tavis convenes a panel to discuss “My Grandfather’s Son,” the new book by Justice Clarence Thomas and the “60 Minutes” profile that coincided with the release of the book.Guests are Marc Morial, President and CEO of The National Urban League, Princeton professor Cornel West, and Columbia University President, Farah Jasmine Griffin.

Here are some excerpts of what the panelists had to say about Justice Thomas and his interview on “60 Minutes:”

Marc Morial, President & CEO, National Urban League – “He (Thomas) seems to have forgotten that he doesn’t stand by himself, he stands amongst many who’ve experienced discrimination, who’ve experienced the pain of racial injustice, yet not at a single point in his career has he used the power of his office…to help those who he professed to be concerned about.” (In other words, Justice Thomas hasn’t used his position to discriminate in the name of “affirmative action.” – Ed.)

Cornel West, Princeton Professor – “They presented this story as if those us who are critics (of Clarence Thomas) have no good reasons to be critical of him siding with the strong against the weak, and the powerful against the relatively powerless. – I thought ‘60 Minutes’ was all about journalism, (Apparently you missed RatherGate – Ed.) what has happened to journalism these days where all you get is puff pieces that constitute an advertisement for a book. Especially with someone like Clarence Thomas who’s been a lightning-rod of this debate among all Americans concerned about truth and justice on the court and in our society.”

Farah Jasmine Griffin, Columbia Professor – “Justice Thomas used (60 Minutes) as yet another opportunity to vilify Anita Hill.” (Yes, dear. And I’m sure you’re still convinced the Duke Lacrosse players really raped that innocent young woman, too! – Ed.)

For more information on showtimes and podcast go to

Brian Steffen
Online Publicist
KCET & Tavis Smiley
[email protected]

It was addressed directly to me, not one of those blanket emails (though I’m sure I wasn’t the only person who received this). So, for guests, this Tavis Smiley has Left, Lefter and Leftest? (I’ll let you be the judge of just whom is which.)

So, they’re going to “discuss” the book, eh? Will any of them have read it before they opine? Or will it just be a modern-day book burning?

And who the hell is Tavis Smiley, and why should I care?

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