High School Morality Play

Progressives’ fixation on adolescent behavior reflects a stunted moral intelligence.

Powerful American stories converged and got tangled up with one another beside the Potomac on a cold winter day in the symbolic white marble city. The story of slavery was there. And Martin Luther King Jr. haunted the scene, for it was his day. In 1963, he spoke to history from that spot. (“I have a dream.”) Just up the steps, Abraham Lincoln (also assassinated) went on brooding in his temple. Our two greatest saints and martyrs were there to bear witness.

Then up the steps came the Native American and his story, in the person of a “tribal elder” who brought the superadded complexity of being a (supposed) Vietnam veteran, so that, by a chain of association, the ghost of Ira Hayes (a Pima Indian who raised the flag on Iwo Jima in World War II and died one night a decade later, alcoholic and frozen, back home in Arizona) was also in attendance.