Sunday, September 20, 2020

Back when journalism was respectable...............

      Huey's description of the ceremonial consumption of potlikker delighted newspaper men all over the country.  In the first grim years of the depression they welcomed any item that promised relief from the drab daily record of lengthening unemployment.  Julian Harris, the witty and cultured editor of the influential Atlanta Constitution, devoted a lead editorial to Huey's recipe.  The governor of Louisiana might know how to prepare potlikker, Harris said, but he certainly did not know how to eat it:  anybody who appreciated this delectable dish crumpled the cornpone.  Huey, matching Harris's mock seriousness, fired off a telegram to the editor defending his recipe.  Harris retaliated with a charge that Huey crumbled in private.  Huey replied in a letter addressed to Harris as the editor of the Potlikker and Cornpone Department.  He had been resentful at first, he said, but had concluded that Harris was honest at heart, though "ignorant of the finer arts of the subject."  But, continued Huey, Harris had goon beyond the limits of respectable journalism with the charge that he crumbled privately.  He had merely crumbled before a few friends to demonstrate the faults of the technique.

-T. Harry Williams,  Huey Long

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