Frank Rich spent many years as the theater critic for the New
York Times, where, at worst, his venom could cause a Broadway
production or two to close down.
Now, however, Mr. Rich opines on political and social issues for
the Times, and, while the results are usually mildly amusing
(even if unintentionally so), his reach has grown a bit, so the
damage he causes can travel beyond the footlights. I’m not
sure why anyone turns to Rich for political analysis – heck,
you might as well read the rantings of a TV game show host –
but the Gray Lady continues to pay him for his weekly column, and,
at the rate she’s bleeding money, that’s no small sacrifice.
Anyway, Mr. Rich has apparently been able to get to the bottom
of the vocal opposition to the “healthcare reform” bill
that was recently gently shepherded through Congress.
It turns out, according to his well-crafted analysis, that it’s
not the bill that’s got people in an uproar; rather, what we’re
facing is the death rattle of a dwindling cadre of white, racist,
sexist, homophobic males terrified by the ascent of people of color,
women and gays.
As the ever-tolerant Rich reasons: “The conjunction of a black
President and a female speaker of the House – topped off by
a wise Latina on the Supreme Court and a powerful gay congressional
committee chairman – would sow fears of disenfranchisement
among a dwindling and threatened minority in the country no matter
what policies were in play.”