Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Interesting—but not for the reasons you might expect
The AP reports that Senator Ted Kennedy has severed ties with a Harvard club that excludes women, mere days after he attacked Supreme Court nominee Alito for membership in a club that opposed the inclusion of women at Princeton.

If you know me, you know that I think both actions are wrong on Kennedy's part—Alito had every right to belong to the Princeton club, if he honestly thought that accepting women at Princeton would be bad for the school, and Kennedy has every right to be a member of an all-male social club if he so chooses. But that's not the point I want to address.

The article also says:

"While we are glad Ted Kennedy has decided to get on the equality bandwagon, it's laughable given that his revelation comes less than a week after his hypocritical attacks on Judge Alito," Republican National Committee spokeswoman Tracey Schmitt said Tuesday.
So what's so special about that? Nothing really. But I have a small complaint. A spokesperson for the RNC (or the DNC for that matter) should show more respect for their opposition. No matter what you think of Kennedy personally, he remains a (relatively senior) Senator of the United States, and deserves to be recognized as such. He should not be referred to by anyone in any official capacity as "Ted Kennedy," unless said person happens to be one of his drinking buddies (of whom I'm sure there are many). Bloggers, opinion journalists, comedians—fine, call him what you like. But other Senators, other government officials, and spokespersons for national parties should refer to him as Senator Kennedy.

The military has a saying: "Salute the rank, not the man." In this case, Ms. Schmitt should remember that she is addressing the office of the Senator from Massachusetts, not just the man, and respect the title he posesses.

Didn't expect that one, now did you?

No comments: