The Washington Post got its hands on US Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas’ memoir, My Grandfather’s Son, which goes on sale Monday. (No doubt Indigo will display it as prominently as the Clintons’ doorstops.)
Thomas is appearing on “60 Minutes” Sunday night, and on Rush Limbaugh’s syndicated radio show Monday (noon to 3:00 p.m. Eastern). You can hear a live stream courtesy of Detroit radio station WJR. From the Post’s preview:
After the death of his grandfather and grandmother in 1983 and with his first marriage on the rocks, Thomas says he had a fleeting thought of suicide. “I’d actually reached the point where I wondered whether there was any reason for me to go on,” he writes. “The mad thought of taking my own life fleetingly crossed my mind. Of course, I didn’t consider it seriously, if only because I knew I couldn’t abandon [my son] Jamal as I had been abandoned by C,” which is how he refers to his father, M.C. Thomas.
Racial imagery abounds in “My Grandfather’s Son,” a continuation of his description of the Senate hearings as a “high-tech lynching.”
“As a child in the Deep South, I’d grown up fearing the lynch mobs of the Ku Klux Klan; as an adult, I was starting to wonder if I’d been afraid of the wrong white people all along,” he writes. “My worst fears had come to pass not in Georgia, but in Washington, D.C., where I was being pursued not by bigots in white robes but by left-wing zealots draped in flowing sanctimony.”
Thomas writes that he did not watch Hill’s televised testimony against him at his Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, and so he does not respond in detail to her charges except to call them lies. He describes Hill as “touchy and apt to overreact” and says: “If I or anyone else had done the slightest thing to offend her, she would have complained loudly and instantly, not waited for a decade to make her displeasure known.”
He writes that Hill did a “mediocre” job at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, where he was chairman, and misrepresented herself at the time of the hearings as a “devoutly religious Reagan-administration employee.” “In fact, she was a left-winger who’d never expressed any religious sentiments” and had a job in the administration “because I’d given it to her.”
*“Whoop-dee-damn-doo” was Thomas’ private reaction to the 52-48 Senate vote to confirm his appointment, after bruising confirmation hearings that he famously described as a “high-tech lynching.”