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Unformatted text preview: circumstances. “The boy is crazy,” he
muttered, although he conceded that with six kids, something like this was bound to happen. At least one of
them had to be a bad egg. Right now, he was looking at it, waiting for an explanation. “Well?”
Rudy panted, bending down and placing his hands on his knees. “I was being Jesse Owens.” He answered as
though it was the most natural thing on earth to be doing. There was even something implicit in his tone that
suggested something along the lines of, “What the hell does it look like?” The tone vanished, however, when he
saw the sleep deprivation whittled under his father’s eyes.
“Jesse Owens?” Mr. Steiner was the type of man who was very wooden. His voice was angular and true. His
body was tall and heavy, like oak. His hair was like splinters. “What about him?”
“You know, Papa, the Black Magic one.”
“I’ll give you black magic.” He caught his son’s ear between his thumb and forefinger.
Rudy winced. “Ow, that really hurts.”
“Does it?” His father was more concerned with the clammy texture of charcoal contaminating his fingers. He
covered everything, didn’t he? he thought. It’s even in his ears, for God’s sake. “Come on.”
On the way home, Mr. Steiner decided to talk politics with the boy as best he could. Only in the years ahead
would Rudy understand it all— when it was too late to bother understanding anything.
THE CONTRADICTORY POLITICS
OF ALEX STEINER
Point One: He was a member of the Nazi Party, but he did not
hate the Jews, or anyone else for that matter.
Point Two: Secretly, though, he couldn’t help feeling a
percentage of relief (or worse—gladness!) when
Jewish shop owners were put out of business—
propaganda informed him that it was only a matter of
time before a plague of Jewish tailors showed up
and stole his customers.
Point Three: But did that mean they should be driven out completely?
Point Four: His family. Surely, he had to do whatever he
could to support...
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This note was uploaded on 01/17/2014 for the course ENG 99 taught by Professor Michal during the Winter '13 term at CSU Sacramento.
- Winter '13