Friday, March 7, 2008

May He Rest In Peace: William F. Buckley, Jr.

William F. Buckley, Jr.
Nov. 24, 1925 to Feb. 27, 2008

Mr. Buckley at his best:

"Legal practices should be informed by realities.
These are enlightening in the matter of marijuana.
There are approximately 700,000 marijuana-related
arrests made every year. Most of these -- 87 percent --
involve nothing more than mere possession of small
amounts of marijuana. This exercise in scrupulosity costs us $10
billion to $15 billion per year in direct expenditures
alone. Most transgressors caught using marijuana
aren't packed away to jail, but some are, and in
Alabama, if you are convicted three times of marijuana
possession, they'll lock you up for 15 years to
life. The thunderers who tell us to stay the course can
always find one man or woman who, having taken
marijuana, moved on to severe mental disorder. But
that argument, to quote myself, is on the order of
saying that every rapist began by masturbating."

-William F. Buckley, Jr. circa June, 2004

Mr. Buckley at his worst:

"The central question that emerges is whether the
White community in the South is entitled to take such
measures as are necessary to prevail, politically and
culturally, in areas in which it does not predominate
numerically? The sobering answer is Yes--the White
community is so entitled because, for the time being,
it is the advanced race. The question, as far as the
White community is concerned, is whether the claims of
civilization supersede those of universal suffrage.
The British believe they do, and acted accordingly, in
Kenya, where the choice was dramatically one between
civilization and barbarism, and elsewhere; the South,
where the conflict is by no means dramatic, as in
Kenya, nevertheless perceives important qualitative
differences between its culture and the Negroes', and
intends to assert its own. National Review believes
that the South's premises are correct. The great
majority of the Negroes of the South who do not vote
do not care to vote, and would not know for what to
vote if they could. Universal suffrage is not the
beginning of wisdom or the beginning of freedom. The
South confronts one grave moral challenge. It must not
exploit the fact of Negro backwardness to preserve the
Negro as a servile class. It is tempting and
convenient to block the progress of a minority whose
services, as menials, are economically useful. Let the
South never permit itself to do this. So long as it is
merely asserting the right to impose superior mores
for whatever period it takes to effect a genuine
cultural equality between the races, and so long as it
does so by humane and charitable means, the South is
in step with civilization, as is the Congress that
permits it to function."

-William F. Buckley, Jr. circa August, 1957

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