In Jeffrey Katz’s new book The Secret Life: A Book of Wisdom from the Great Teacher, he directly ties Maimonides’ teachings to the issue of whether Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam should resign. And yes, he should resign. They tell us that, on an interpersonal level, one should be quick to forgive someone who asks forgiveness. But full redemption is available only when one again finds himself in the same position but chooses to act differently the second time around. In Northam’s case, this would mean that in the 35 years since his blackface incident, he has worked to soothe racial tensions in this country and advance the cause of African-Americans, rather than do the opposite. But, indeed, he has done the opposite. And that’s why he has to go.
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