In One Eye

Wednesday, June 18, 2003
 
A disgusting display of jingoistic chauvinism.
Right up to her death last year at the age of 81, Ruth Steinkraus-Cohen went all out for her favorite causes. She was still publishing a yearly "Peace" calendar chock-full of tidbits on countries large and small. She greeted hundreds of international visitors at the train station with their native flags and a smile. And she gave to nearly every artistic endeavor in town.

So you would think that when a local state representative proposed naming a town bridge after her, there would have been applause back home.

Instead, in an unlikely marker of these contentious times, the proposal has set off a heated dispute because one of her pet causes was the United Nations, as the bill to name the bridge clearly notes ...

"People who support this will say that it's not about the U.N. It's about Ruth," said Judith Starr, a Westport resident who would prefer to see the bridge named for veterans. "But how can you say it's not political?"

In a letter to The Westport News, she argued that naming the bridge after Ms. Steinkraus-Cohen "for her work on behalf of the United Nations, but ignoring what that organization has become, is a little like honoring Ezra Pound's poetry, while ignoring his support of Nazi Germany."
Just great. Now we're comparing the UN to the Third Reich. What is wrong with these people? How can they be so stupid?

It's people like Ms. Starr that the Bushies are depending on for re-election.