If Jonathan Kirsch, in reviewing Kathleen Hall Jamieson's "Eloquence in an Electronic Age," (View, July 6) cites her quote from Joseph Welch correctly, Jamieson should be admonished to be a bit more careful with her punctuation. She quotes the distinguished jurist as saying, "Have you no decency, sir, at long last? Have you left no sense of decency?"
The Army-McCarthy hearings having been televised live, I heard Welch on that memorable occasion, and what he said--with tears brimming in his eyes--was, "Have you no decency, sir? At long last, have you left no sense of decency?"
Marvelous how the accidental transference of a simple phrase from one sentence to another robs a powerful rhetorical question of its impact.