My husband and I have been reading "Demonic" - which takes a while, since it requires both of us to be available at the same time - and are almost finished with it. I find it fascinating, not only for the dead-on descriptions of liberals as a mob, but also for the incisive discussion of the French Revolution and how very different it was from the American Revolution (something that I already knew the Americans of the time figured out for themselves, but which seems to often be forgotten now). One part that really stood out to me was when Ann talked about how often we're warned about the "dangers" of "violence from the right", which never happens (unless you want to count a handful of roundly-denounced lunatics who've shot abortion doctors), but only the right itself seems concerned about violence from the left, even though it happens so often it's taken for granted, and even bragged about in some cases. One of the biggest surprises was when she talked about the civil rights movement in Birmingham, and how people who are now supposed to be revered as "freedom fighters" actually inflamed a situation that was already solved to gain attention for themselves. "Martin Luther King Jr. was the heir to Rousseau (if you don't know, look it up). He used images in order to win publicity and goodwill for his cause, deploying children in the streets for a pointless, violent confrontation with a lame-duck lunatic: Theophilus Eugene "Bull" Connor. Connor was a machine-politics, pro-union Democrat who had been elected to the Democratic National Committee from Alabama. He was also a vile racist, endorsed by Alabama's Democratic, segregationist governor, George Wallace. After witnessing Connor's brutal tactics to enforce segregation, the good citizens of Birmingham stepped in to remove him from his position as Commissioner of Public Safety. Birmingham's middle class, business leaders, and Jewish community weren't interested in having beery KKK nightriders in their town. First, they voted to eliminate Connor's office; then - to be extra clear - they decisively voted against Connor when he ran for mayor. It was over - responsible citizens and civil rights advocates had won. But Martin Luther King planned one last protest before Connor's term expired. City merchants, including the black millionaire A. G. Gaston, opposed King's protest on the grounds that Connor had already been beaten at the ballot box. On the day of Connor's electoral defeat, Burke Marshall, a champion of civil rights in Kennedy's Justice Department, called King and asked him to call off the Birmingham protests. But King decided to deliberately provoke Connor, who was insane. This was a way to extend the movement, just as, years later, King would branch out from racial justice into "social justice". With television crews crawling all over Birmingham, King arranged for hundreds of black children to march on the city. As expected, this led to a total conflagration when Connor turned the fire hoses and police dogs on little children, some as young as six years old. The explosive images from this confrontation were instantly broadcast around the world. King had stoiked this incredible fire to ignite his dying movement - dying because civil rights had won in the courts, at the ballot box, and in the hearts and minds of Americans. But King and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference's Wyatt Walker were "overjoyed" at the mayhem they had caused. Walker gloated, "There never was any more skillful manipulation of the news media than there was in Birmingham." Connor was delighted, too - the protests helped him rally his dwindling racist following. The only people who weren't happy were the decent citizens of Birmingham, pro-integrationists in the Kennedy administration, and civil rights lawyers. As businessman Gaston put it, King was "messing things up just when we were getting a new start."" Wow. Just . . . wow. The things they don't teach in school.