Marion Barry: A wily survivor leaves the stage

There is no middle ground in judging four-time Washington mayor Marion Barry, who died Sunday at the age of 78. For many whites, Barry was a politician addicted to alcohol, drugs and power. Meanwhile, most African-Americans in D.C. enshrined him as a strong leader who shared their struggles and overcame the odds; regardless of his personal failings, they embraced him as their own. Yet he failed to improve the lives of the poor Washingtonians who revered him.

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