A public forum for news and opinion about Winn Parish, Louisiana.
This year’s class of inductees into the Louisiana Political Hall of Fame isn’t much better than the classes of recent years. It seems that the selection committee is more interested in flattering mediocre politicians - who are perhaps “famous” among their own group of toadies - than it is in choosing inductees who will actually be remembered by anyone ten or twenty years from now.Here’s my own list of suggested inductees who have somehow been overlooked:JUDAH P. BENJAMINCalled “the brains of the Confederacy,” Louisiana politician Benjamin served as Attorney General, Secretary of War, and Secretary of State of the Confederate States of America (though, not all at the same time). Almost certainly the most prominent Jewish American politician of the 19th century.HODDING CARTER IILouisiana journalist known as the “Spokesman of the New South.”DAVID DUKEProbably too controversial to make it past the selection committee, even though there are only two or three current Hall of Famers who are even arguably as famous as Duke. It should be noted that the Hall of Fame (which is not the same thing as a Hall of Honor) already contains an ardent white supremacist (Leander Perez) and an alleged Klansman (Edward Douglass White).JIM GARRISONNoted jurist and JFK assassination conspiracy theorist.PAUL M. HEBERTLongest serving Dean of LSU Law. Also, served as a judge at the Nuremberg trials.JOHN MAGINNISIt’s probably best to wait until Maginnis is retired or, at least, closer to the end of his career before inducting him, but he’s surely secured a future spot in the Hall of Fame.CHARLTON LYONSThe father of the modern Republican Party in Louisiana.A.J. LIEBLINGWriter of one of the best political semi-biographies of the twentieth century, “The Earl of Louisiana.”HUEY P. NEWTONMonroe-born co-founder of the Black Panther Party.LEE HARVEY OSWALDNew Orleans native who probably had a greater impact on global politics than any other Louisianan.P.B.S. PINCHBACKFirst black acting governor in the United States.JOHN RARICKFormer Congressman from Louisiana and 1980 American Independent Party nominee for President of the United States.BLAZE STARROne of only a handful of Louisiana political figures to have a movie named after her (two movies, if you count “Blaze Starr Goes Nudist”). Though her professional life was flamboyant, it was certainly no more sordid or dishonorable than the professional lives of many current Hall of Famers.ROBERT PENN WARRENAuthor of “All the King's Men.”
They induct way too many each year. It kinda takes any hope of glamour out of the whole idea.
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