Though H. L. Menchen has been dead since 1956, many of his words are more relevant today in this nasty and despicable political climate than ever. For those unaware, Menchen was a journalist and critic. A man of ideas. In the 1960 film, Inherit the Wind, the character of newspaper journalist E.K. Hornbeck, portrayed by Gene Kelly, was based on Menchen.
The other day I came across a few of the writer’s famous quotes. It made me think about today’s political ugliness and the rise of mediocrity in many of the candidates. Vulgarity, encouraging violence, sexism, racism and other vile words should not be what comes out of the mouth of candidates for the Presidency of the United States. This kind of talk should in no way be part of the political process. We as a country are becoming a classless society. Then again, maybe we always were and this vile behavior is just bringing it to the surface and out into the open. It’s a sad comment on our society. I always hoped we were better than that.
Below are a few of his quotes…
“Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public.”
“Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want and deserve to get it good and hard.”
“Giving every man a vote has no more made men wise and free than Christianity has made them good.”