posted on October 16, 2012 10:51
Martin Hunter of Charlotte wrote that he and his wife “thought that it was pretty slanted to make Friday look like a poorly-educated racist yahoo, who fought the Carter Justice Department until Reagan let him off the hook….Nothing in his defense regarding desegregation of the UNC system. Very little about his service on the commission regarding college athletics.”
The obituary’s lead described Friday as “a politically deft lawyer who, with scant scholarly qualifications, steered the University of North Carolina through three decades of tumultuous growth and helped scale back federal desegregation demands.”
Maybe it’s just North Carolina pride, but I agree with Hunter. I was working then for Governor Hunt, who backed Friday in the fight. Many national reporters and Washington bureaucrats did seem to think of us all as “poorly educated racist yahoos.” The Times obituary reflects that attitude.
Bill Friday deserved better from the Times.