"He instinctively can find the shining greatness of our American culture and does a good job of highlighting it (although he also does have those rare lapses when he writes about hockey, but that is something caused by impurities in the Eastern waters or something)." Erik Keilholtz
Under the patronage of St. Tammany
Mark C. N. Sullivan is an editor at a Massachusetts university. He is married and the father of three children. Email
Sargent Shriver, and his fate as a Democratic presidential prospect, has always illustrated to me an unfortunate side effect of modern liberal politics: No matter how committed someone like Shriver is to the Democratic causes - no matter how great their legacies - they are today invariably viewed with suspicion for being committed Catholics.
By some credible measures, Shriver is America's most magnificent liberal. He is a founder of the Peace Corps, which would become a rite of passage for thousands of earnest, life-long, income-redistributionists, Volvo-buyers and contributors to the Sierra Club.
Shriver helped create the Special Olympics and still sits as its chairman of the board emeritus. He was on the ground floor for Upward Bound, Head Start, the Job Corps, as well as numerous do-gooder programs from Lyndon Johnson's War on Poverty. The Kennedy clan, into which he married, was better known than Shriver as pillars of Democratic liberalism, but as author Scott Stossel argues, there was no better, purer liberal than Sarge.
He and wife Eunice were among the greatest American liberals, that is, until the early 1970s came along. Then something changed.
As Stossel observes in his biography, Shriver remained committed to his party despite the fact that he was at odds with it on an issue that would evolve into the most sacred of all Democratic Party planks: abortion rights. As long-time family friend Michael Novak related, "on abortion, he and Eunice were always flat out of accord with their party."
Obviously Democrats would never outright reject a great liberal icon like Shriver.
But they sure would never again elect someone like him for president.