: views from the Hill

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Goldwater's kin in the news

STRANGE FRUIT: Senator Barry Goldwater's kin try to seal embarrassing letters about them from public view. by Stephan Lemons

[via Romenesko]

After you read the article, click through to the archive of copies of some of the letters Goldwater's kin are striving to keep from public view.

Hoo boy.

Seems this would never have come up (the actual copies being splashed all over the Web) if the kin hadn't convinced the Arizona Historical Foundation to, at least temporarily, seal the Goldwater correspondence they had on file.

Here's hoping that when the Arizona Historical Foundation revisits the decision at their January 9, 2007, board meeting, they'll realize that Goldwater knew precisely what he wanted to do when he gave them those archives and they should honor his wishes and not those of his kin, who are just trying to avoid public embarrassment. Goldwater's letters, you'll note, are all typed, and he kept a copy for his files. He meant those files to be available to researchers, historians and, yes, snoopy news reporters.

This contretemps all began with a Phoenix New Times reaction (Goldwater Uncut, Phoenix New Times, 19 Oct 2006, also by Stephan Lemons) to Goldwater's granddaughter's hagiographic HBO paean to her grandfather.

CC Goldwater hadn't realized until the critical Phoenix New Times article came out that her grandfather's family letters were in the Foundation archives and available to the public. Ooops.

CC's Paka Goldwater's letters to her basically say, in a grandfatherly sort of way, that CC needs to find her own way and stop trading off her relationship to him. And yet, there she is ... with a last name that now matches his (CC Ross legally changed her name to CC Goldwater) and his HBO biofilm on her resume.


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