Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

For Liberals Today, Character Is Irrelevant

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

For Liberals Today, Character Is Irrelevant

Article excerpt

What we do in life echoes in eternity," the Roman general Maximus (Russell Crowe) tells his troops in the opening scene of the movie "Gladiator."

That sentiment resonates with conservatives, who think a person should be judged by what he or she accomplishes, not by who his or her parents or grandparents were.

Not so with liberals today. Elizabeth Warren, the Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate, is celebrated among them mostly for her claim to be part Native American.

Ms. Warren claims that O.C. Sarah Smith Crawford, a great-great- grandmother, was Cherokee. If that were true, Ms. Warren would be just 1/32 Native American.

It isn't true. Sarah Smith Crawford was listed as "white" in the 1860 census, genealogists found. There was no mention of her in the Cherokee registry. Genealogists did find that an ancestor of Ms. Warren's guarded Cherokees on the "Trail of Tears" from Tennessee to Oklahoma. She's as white as her blond hair and blue eyes suggest.

Ms. Warren is a graduate of Rutgers, which is ranked 82nd by top- law-schools.com. To describe the quality of her academic research as "shoddy" might be kind:

* A peer review at Northwestern University in 2005 of a paper she wrote about the role medical bills play in personal bankruptcies said her "methods were so poor they gave cover to those who want to dismiss the problems of the uninsured -- they can say the only paper out there uses a suspect method."

* In 2010, when President Barack Obama was thinking of selecting Ms. Warren to head the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, an Atlantic magazine editor reviewed her academic work and concluded it was "deeply, deeply flawed. ... This isn't Harvard [Law] caliber material -- not even Harvard undergraduate."

* In a 1991 review of a book Ms. Warren co-authored, Rutgers law professor Philip Shuchman charged "the authors have engaged in repeated instances of scientific misconduct. …

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