Barry Goldwater: Extremist of the Right

Barry Goldwater: Extremist of the Right

Barry Goldwater: Extremist of the Right

Barry Goldwater: Extremist of the Right

Excerpt

The enormous Cow Palace in San Francisco vibrated with sound, quivered with passion.Streamers waved, placards did a crazy dance, drums thundered as for tribal war, and balloons released in a triumphant barrage drifted down like giant snowflakes in a blizzard. Dominating all, the center of the cyclone of noise and confusion and emotion, stood a tall, handsome, gray-haired man with an eagle profile, strong nose, iron jaw and wide, firm, mobile lips.

Barry Morris Goldwater, at 55, had been nominated for the Presidency of the United States at the Republican National Convention, and he was now on this evening of July 16, 1964 about to deliver his acceptance speech — a speech that would be long remembered for the heavily underscored lines: "Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice; moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue."

Those words — words that would cause his audience to erupt in a shout of approbation — had not been spoken yet. For the moment, in the din, it was impossible to speak. Former Vice President Richard M. Nixon, who had introduced the nominee, grabbed Goldwater's wrist, and together they stood, arms extended and uplifted in the traditional gesture of the victor.Goldwater's wide lips split in a grin of triumph that sent his right-wing followers into a fresh burst of frenzy, triggering emotion much as the famous battle grin of Franklin Roosevelt once had fired the liberal legions.

Across the nation millions sat with eyes riveted to their television screens, watching the pandemonium, feeling the fervor and passion quiver along their nerve ends, absorbed in the man whose figure at the moment cast its shadow over America.

Those with memories could recall another and almost iden-

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