A Senator's Surprising Inauguration Shout-Out Probably Wasn't So Surprising | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

NPR : News

Filed Under:

A Senator's Surprising Inauguration Shout-Out Probably Wasn't So Surprising

It may have struck many people as odd that Lamar Alexander, the senior senator from Tennessee, gave a shout-out to Alex Haley, the author of The Autobiography of Malcolm X, during his remarks at the presidential inauguration.

"The late Alex Haley, the author of Roots, lived his life by these six words: Find the good and praise it," Alexander said Monday on the National Mall, just before he introduced Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who swore in Vice President Biden. (Alexander was the only Republican lawmaker to speak at President Obama's inauguration.)

But it turns out that Alexander and Haley, who died in 1992, were old friends from way back, according to The Washington Post.

"The Tennessee Republican and the celebrated author were good friends. During his second term as governor, Alexander invited Haley to co-chair a homecoming celebration for Tennesseans. During the planning, Haley was convinced to move back to the state. The two once traveled for weeks on a cargo ship together, both working on books. Alexander has called Haley 'the greatest storyteller Tennessee has ever produced.' "

In 2011, Alexander donated many of his papers, including his long correspondence with Haley, to Vanderbilt University.

Copyright 2013 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Ann Meara, Half Of Husband-Wife Comedy Team, Dies At 85

Ann Meara died Saturday in New York. She had a long varied career in show business and was one half of the 1960s comedy duo, Stiller and Meara. She was marred to Jerry Stiller. Her son is Ben Stiller.
NPR

How Dangerous Is Powdered Alcohol?

Last month, the U.S. Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau approved a powdered alcohol product, making both parents and lawmakers nervous. Some states have already banned powdered alcohol. NPR's Arun Rath speaks with Brent Roth of Wired, who made his own powdered concoction and put it to the test.
NPR

Obama Administration Forced To Defend Strategy Against ISIS In Iraq

On this Memorial Day, the Obama administration finds itself defending its foreign policy strategy in Iraq where the self-proclaimed Islamic State, also known as ISIS, has captured the city of Ramadi.
NPR

For Aspiring Artists, Social Media Can Get Fans Too Close For Comfort

The power of social media is that aspiring artists can essentially invite fans into their living rooms, but fans can sometimes overstay their welcome.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.