Ellis Cose

Stories by Ellis Cose

  • 'The Lesser Of Two Evils'

    Richard Riordan cast himself as a Ross Perot-style reformer, but by Election Day he had come to symbolize Los Angeles's last white hope. Racial tension alone doesn't explain the millionaire businessman's victory over city councilman Michael Woo last Tuesday. Frustration with crime, economic decline and politics-as usual played a role; but ethnic Balkanization was the key. That polarization may eventually be the instrument of Riordan's undoing. At the very least, it could make him a transitional mayor: a link between the Tom Bradley era and one where Latinos prevail. ...
  • The Voting Rights Act: A Troubled Past

    Lani Guinier's biggest mistake may have been specializing in the Voting Rights Act. Conceived in suspicion and sustained by mistrust, the act evokes both a shameful past and a problematic present. And like other symbols of shame, it is a magnet for hostility. ...
  • A Prophet With Attitude

    As a young philosopher writing his firs book, Cornel West extolled the virtue of intellectual activity "on the margin . . . outside the world of aimless chitchat and gossip. "Now, with publication of "Race Matters" (105 pages. Beacon Press. $15), an essay collection exploring racial issues, the chatter of celebrity has invaded West's sanctum of marginality. He seems on the verge of major stardom in that twilight zone where intellectual debate and TV talk meet. And West, Princeton University's director of Afro-American studies and a Harvard graduate, Christian, socialist and world-class clotheshorse, insists-as he stands on the threshold of his 40th birthday-that it is not he but the world that has changed. ...