Has Trump ever read the Bible

American Fascism: From Ku Klux Klan to Trump

In riot gear and armored vehicles, a militarized police force has been thundering into peaceful demonstrators in many places in America for weeks. Right at the start of the Black Lives Matter protests, the president stepped out of a bunker under the White House and had his citizens fogged with tear gas to get to a church he had never attended while holding a Bible he did had never read. Many people think of a famous phrase that is often incorrectly attributed to Sinclair Lewis' 1935 novel “This is not possible with us”: “When fascism comes to America, it will wrap itself up in the flag Carry the cross. ”Since Lewis' novel is best remembered among the many warnings against American fascism from the interwar period, this warning has recently been attributed to him. But the words are not his.

Rather, the dictum was probably coined by James Waterman Wise, the son of the eminent American rabbi Stephen Wise. He was one of the many voices that urged Americans at the time to recognize fascism as a serious internal threat. "The America of power and wealth," warned Wise, is "an America in need of fascism." American fascism could "emerge from patriotic associations such as the American Legion and the Daughters of the American Revolution [...] and come to us wrapped in the American flag or a newspaper published by Hearst". In another speech he put it somewhat differently: American fascism would probably be "wrapped in the American flag and announced as an appeal for freedom and the preservation of the constitution".

American fascism, by definition, would use American symbols and American slogans. “Don't expect them to hold up the swastika,” warned Wise, “or use any of the popular forms of fascism” from Europe. For as ultra-nationalist as fascism is, it tries to normalize itself by resorting to familiar national customs and insisting on just doing political business as usual. In 1934 the leader of the Spanish fascist Falange, José Antonio Primo de Rivera, declared that all fascism must be local and indigenous: “Italy and Germany [...] turned back to their own authenticity, and if we do the same, authenticity will become who we find will also be ours: it will not be Germany or Italy, and therefore, if we understand the performance of the Italians or the Germans, we will be more Spanish than we ever were. [...] In fascism, as in movements of all ages, certain constants can be found under local characteristics. [...] We need a total feeling for what is required: a total feeling for the fatherland, life, history. "

Still, Samuel Moyn recently spoke out against comparing Trump's policies with fascism, as his administration “pursues goals that are deeply rooted in American history. No analogy to Hitler or fascism is required to explain these results. ”But that assumes that fascism is not itself deeply rooted in American history. The assumption that everything Native American couldn't be fascist is questionable - if not to say exceptionalist. This does not deny the question of American fascism, but rather raises it. Fascism experts like Robert O. Paxton, Roger Griffin, and Stanley G. Payne have long argued that fascism can never appear alien to its followers. His claim to speak for "the people" and restore national greatness means that each version of fascism must have its own local identity. Anyone who believes that a nationalist movement is not fascist because it is indigenous does not understand what it is about.

Historically, fascist movements have also been shaped by opportunism, a willingness to say almost anything that brings them to power. This makes the definitions even more confusing. It has proven impossible to identify the core, the indivisible fascist atom. We only have what Umberto Eco called the “vagueness” of fascism and what others have described as its “unclear and synthetic doctrines”. There are good arguments against the attempt to use a taxonomy to establish something like a “fascist minimum”, as if a checklist could qualitatively distinguish fascism from other authoritarian dictatorships. Some consider anti-Semitism a litmus test, others consider genocide. Does colonialism count? Aimé Césaire, C.L.R. James and Hannah Arendt - among many other great thinkers who lived through the first fascisms - and argued that European fascism brought over white bodies what colonial and slavery systems had perfected in the affliction of black and brown bodies.

According to Robert O. Paxton's influential argument, fascism determines its practice. Nevertheless, its respective characteristics clearly share some striking features with one another, including the nostalgia for a purer, mystical, often rural past; Cults of tradition and cultural renewal; paramilitary groups; the delegitimization of political opponents and the demonization of critics; the generalization of some groups as authentically national while all other groups are dehumanized; Anti-intellectual hatred and attacks on the free press; Anti-modernism; fetishized patriarchal masculinity; as well as a desperate sense of sacrifice and collective resentment. Fascist mythologies often contain a notion of purge, an exclusive defense against ethnic or cultural "pollution" and related eugenic preferences for certain "bloodlines". Fascism turns identity into a weapon, elevates the “master people” and belittles all others.

"Hitler learns from America"

Interwar Americans could not foresee what would happen in Europe, but they were very much aware of one thing that we have lost sight of today: all fascism is by definition indigenous. “Fascism must be self-grown”, warned an American speaker in 1937, “following the words of Benito Mussolini that fascism cannot be imported”, but “must be specially adapted to our national life”. Logically, therefore, “the anti-Negro program” would form a “very plausible battle cry for American fascists”, like anti-Semitism for the Germans. Others realized that the deep roots of anti-Semitic evangelical Christianity would offer plausible battle cries similar to American fascism. Soon thereafter, wartime patriotism and the Allied triumph allowed Americans to view fascism as an alien and clearly European pathology. But "the man on horseback," the despot who could use reactionary populist energies to rise to power, embodied a specter in American politics, at least since the presidency of Andrew Jackson in the 1830s.

One of the last, and most terrifying, lynchings in America occurred in October 1934 at the Florida Panhandle, where a crowd of 5,000 gathered to watch what had been announced in the local press hours earlier. The torturers burned Claude Neal's skin, castrated him and stuffed his genitals into his mouth. Then they forced him to say he enjoyed the taste. After he was eventually dragged to death behind a cart, the crowd urinated on his mutilated body before hanging him at the Marianna courthouse. The German press, keen to capitalize on American lynchings, circulated photos of Neal, whose horrific death they made "harsh comments that America should sweep on its own doorstep" before blaming other governments for their dealings with their citizens. "'Stop the lynching of negroes" is the Nazi counterattack against American critics, "was the headline of the" Courier "from Pittsburgh in a report dealing with German representations of racist violence in America.

The "Courier" was one of many Afro-American newspapers that not only saw affinities between Nazi Germany and the America of the Jim Crow era [1], but also traced causal connections: "Hitler learns from America," explained the "Courier "1933. The newspaper reported that the universities in the Third Reich avowedly got their ideas from" the American trailblazers Madison Grant and Lothrop Stoddard "[2] and that the" ethnic insanity "in America Nazi Germany" was a model for oppression and Persecution of his own minorities ”. The Afro-American "Age" from New York asked itself quite similarly whether Hitler had learned "under the guidance" of the leaders of the Ku Klux Klan, perhaps as a "subordinate Kleagle [3] or something like that".

The Nazis themselves saw a clear relationship. Recent research has shown that Hitler systematically relied on American racial laws when drafting the Nuremberg Laws. The Third Reich also actively solicited supporters in the Jim Crow South, although the political leaders of the White South for the most part did not reciprocate. But the relationship between the two systems was perfectly evident at the time, on both sides of the Atlantic. A Nazi consul general in California even tried to buy the Klan in order to plan an American coup. But its price was too low - if there was one clan, it was greedy. When the story came to light in 1939, journalists gave another reason: the Klan could not afford to appear foreign. “To be effective,” he had to pursue his nativist agenda “in the name of Americanism”.

The KKK as a foretaste of European fascism

In 1935, African Americans across the country organized mass protests against Mussolini's massacre of Ethiopians. "American fascism already has negroes," said the Jamaican-American journalist and historian Joel Augustus Rogers. The black poet Langston Hughes agreed, “Put a hood on Franco and he'd be a member of the Ku Klux Klan, a Kleagle. Fascism is what the Ku Klux Klan will establish when it joins the Liberty League [4] and uses machine guns and airplanes instead of a few yards of rope. "" In America you don't have to explain to negroes what fascism is about in practice, "said Hughes on another occasion:" We know that. "

In the same year W.E.B. Du Bois "Black Reconstruction in America". This foundational work of African American critical historiography appeared in the midst of the turmoil caused by the persecution of the Scottsboro Nine [5]. Shortly afterwards, the African-American athlete Jesse Owens won gold four times at the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin - which was seen as a prank against Hitler as well as an admonition to Jim Crow America. So it is anything but a coincidence that Du Bois suggests more than once in his study that White Supremacism, the idea of ​​white supremacy, of Jim Crow America, could indeed be viewed as "fascism". Half a century later, Amiri Baraka formulated this idea of ​​Du Bois explicitly in a little noticed but remarkable essay. He argued that the end of the Reconstruction Period in 1877 “threw Afro America into fascism. There is no other term for it. The overthrow of democratically elected governments and rule through direct terror, through the most reactionary elements of finance capital [...] carried out with murder, intimidation and robbery, through the first assault detachment - again Hitler's prototype - the Ku Klux Klan, which was financed directly by northern capital. ”It took white American historiography another good decade to take up the argument: in 2004, Paxton observed in“ Anatomy of Fascism ”that there was some argument in favor of the first Ku Klux Klan in the southern states to understand the civil war as the first fascist movement in the world: “[The first KKK] was an alternative civil instance that existed parallel to the legitimate state, which in the eyes of the Klan founders no longer represented the legitimate interests of their community. With his uniform (white robe and hood), as well as his intimidation techniques and his belief that violence was justified in the name of the fate of his group, the clan's first version in the defeated American South was arguably a remarkable preview of how fascist movements in the Interwar Europe would work. "

After the KKK was revived in 1915, by the mid-1920s it had no fewer than five million members - that means there was one Klansman for every three or four white Protestant men in America. When Mussolini burst onto the world stage in 1921, many Americans across the country immediately recognized his project as newspapers from Montana to Florida told their readers that “the 'Fascisti' might be known as the Ku Klux Klan” and that “the Klan [...] corresponds to the Fascisti of America ”. Comparisons between the domestic clan and Italian fascism were soon ubiquitous in the American press. And the resemblance wasn't superficial.

Color Shirts and Stormtroopers: US Fascism of the Interwar Period

Under the taints of corruption and sex scandals, the second clan disintegrated in the late 1920s, but some of its former leaders soon cut off their blood-soaked shawls to match the new political fashions. The majority of American interwar fascist groups, more than one of whom called themselves fascist, did not emerge as branches of Nazism but as offshoots of the Klan. Their Christian nationalism could not be separated from their anti-Semitism, but it also led to a sectarianism that may have prevented the formation of stronger alliances.

Many of these groups shared the preference of their European counterparts for uniforms made from “colored shirts” to assert an organized force and militaristic power in order to intimidate and exclude. These included the Order of Black Shirts from Atlanta; the White Shirts, militant "Campaigners for Economic Freedom," founded by George W. Christians, who cultivated a toothbrush mustache and fluttering Hitler hair; the Gray Shirts, officially called The Pioneer Home Protective Association, founded in rural New York; the khaki shirts (also: US Fascists); the Silver Shirts, which William Dudly Pelley created based on the model of Hitler's "Elite Nazi Corps"; and the dress shirts. In late 1934, American journalists poked fun at this growing list. “Gray shirts make America the No. 1 shirt nation,” was a sarcastic headline. The article said, as long as other countries do not begin to cheat by combining colors, "it will be impossible for us to be over-shirts".

Others, however, took the threat more seriously. James Waterman Wise repeatedly stated that "the various orders of color shirts - the whole haberdashery brigade playing on group prejudices" would "sow the seeds of fascism" in the United States. The Black Legion, for example, was an offshoot of the clan that thrived in the Midwest. Its leader spoke of taking Washington in a revolutionary coup, called the New Deal a Jewish conspiracy "to starve the gentiles," and advocated the extermination of American Jews by piping poison gas into synagogues on Yom Kippur. A widespread editorial warned in 1936 that anyone wondering "what fascism would look like in this country" should look at the Black Legion, with its "smell of Hitlerism," its "anti-Catholic, anti-Jewish, anti - Negro and anti-workers program, their whips, clubs and guns, their brazen disregard for law and order and the constitutional procedures of democracy ”. And further: "These are the attitudes and the equipment of fascism."

The short-lived organization Friends of the Hitler Movement quickly transformed into the more acceptable Friends of New Germany in 1933, before the Bund emerged from it. He organized several mass rallies in New York's Madison Square Garden, including the 1939 "Mass Demonstration for True Americanism". There a gigantic George Washington banner was flanked by swastikas and twelve hundred "stormtroopers" stood in the aisle rows and showed the Hitler salute; Images from the rally were restored in 2019 and processed into the short film “A Night at the Garden”. In 1940 the federation claimed 100,000 members and had summer camps in rural New York, New Jersey, and Long Island where it trained the American Nazi youth. The Bund propagandist Gerhard Kunze reported at the time, “The swastika is not foreign, but one hundred percent American. The Indians have always used it. ”The emblem of another group, The American National-Socialist Party, was“ an American Indian holding out his arm in greeting, against the background of a black swastika ”. This group admitted that they wanted to naturalize Nazism by seeking a blood relationship with American symbolism.

Then there was Father Coughlin. “I'll take the street of fascism,” he said in 1936, before forming the Christian Front, whose members referred to themselves as “brown shirts”. His poisonous anti-Semitic radio program, which regularly spread claims from the fictional "Protocols of the Elders of Zion", reached nearly 30 million Americans at weddings - more than any other radio program in the world at the time. Those listeners tuned in at the end of 1938 when Coughlin justified the violence of the Reichspogromnacht for “retaliation” on the Jews who allegedly murdered 20 million Christians and destroyed billions of dollars in “Christian property”. Nazism, he said, was a natural "defense mechanism" against Jewish banker-sponsored communism. Coughlin's weekly "Social Justice", which had a circulation of 200,000 copies at weddings, was described by "Life" magazine as the most widely read voice of "Nazi propaganda in America".

An "American Leader"?

But the top American politician most often accused of fascist tendencies was Huey Long. As governor of Louisiana, which he also represented in the Senate, Long imposed martial law, censored the newspapers, banned public meetings, occupied courts and parliaments with his cronies and made his 24-year-old mistress ministerial. Long was a gangster, but with his “Share Our Wealth” program he improved living conditions on site, built roads and bridges, invested in hospitals and schools, and abolished poll tax. Moreover, his economic populism was not based on deepening racist, ethnic or religious divisions; he subordinated his White Supremacism to his redistributive message. "We only lynch a nigger occasionally," he said cheerfully when he rejected a law against lynching. Still, he recognized that "you cannot help poor white people without helping negroes," so he was ready to let the rising seas raise all boats. When Long considered running for the presidency in 1936, incumbent Franklin D. Roosevelt was alarmed enough to inform his ambassador to Germany: "Long plans to be a presidential candidate like Hitler's" and will try to stand up as dictator until 1940.

Roosevelt was by no means alone in his fear that Long would be an "American leader". Long's political career provided plenty of grounds for doubting his democratic sincerity. Sinclair Lewis was inspired by him for his fictional presidential dictator Buzz Windrip in "We Can't Do This", who promises Americans $ 5,000 a year if they vote, as Long had done. But the name Windrip also refers to Reverend Gerald B. Winrod, the "Kansas Hitler" who led the Defenders of the Christian Faith and toured the country since the late 1920s to learn about the millenarian roles of Hitler, Stalin and Mussolini in speaking of biblical prophecy. That Lewis too viewed the Klan as a fascist movement emerges from an extensive indictment with which his novel begins and in which Lewis sweeps through a genealogy of American proto-fascist tendencies, including anti-Semitism, political corruption, war hysteria, conspiracy theories, and evangelical Christianity. It ends with the "night riders from Kentucky and the wild joy many of us feel about a lynching". “Oh no, that can't happen here! When in history was a people so ripe for a dictatorship like ours! "

President Windrip is "vulgar, almost illiterate, an easily convict public liar and almost idiotic in his 'ideas'." His fascist regime, driven by Christian nationalism and the desire for ethnic homogeneity, turns African-Americans and Jews into enemies of the state, by decreeing that all bankers are Jewish. "We can't do that" claims that the most dangerous supporters of fascism in America would be those who "deny the word 'fascism" and preach enslavement to capitalism in the name of constitutional and traditional native American freedom ". It would be a "government of profits, through profits, for profits". In America, fascism, with its cancerous version of nationalism, will always graft American piety about individual freedom onto a reality of systemic greed and print "liberation" on flags waved by an advertising syringe.

Similarly, Dorothy Thompson, the celebrated journalist and anti-fascist activist - and Sinclair Lewis ‘wife at the time - earned the nickname" Kassandra ": she had prophesied that when fascism emerged in the US, it would look all too familiarly American. (Thompson liked to counter that Kassandra was always right in the end.) “When Americans think of dictators, they always have a foreign model in mind,” she said. But an American dictator would be “one of the boys, and he will stand for everything traditionally American”. And the American people, Thompson added, “will answer him with a huge, general, democratic, sheep-like bawl, 'OK, boss! Do it as you want, boss! '”At the same time, Yale professor Halford Luccock was widely quoted in the press with the following statement:“ If and if fascism comes to America, it will not have a' Made in Germany 'label ; it will not be marked with a swastika; it will not even be called fascism; it will, of course, be called 'Americanism'. "And Luccock continued," The grandiose phrase of the 'American Way' will be used by interested profit-making groups to commit a variety of sins against the American and Christian tradition hide sins like lawless violence, tear gas and firearms, denial of civil rights. ”A few years later, Thompson wrote that she was reminded of something that Huey Long himself had once told her:“ American fascism would never be considered a fascist, but rather emerge as a 100 percent American movement; he would not copy the German method of taking power, but only need the right president and the right cabinet. ”Roosevelt's Vice President Henry Wallace also issued a warning:“ American fascism will not be really dangerous for so long, ”he wrote in 1944 in the“ New York Times "," until there is a determined coalition between the cartelists, the deliberate poisoners of public opinion and those who stand for demagoguery like the KKK. "

The brown tradition of "America First"

Wallace's warning came when the Roosevelt administration wrongly prosecuted many of these characters for sedition, including Winrod, Pelley, Elizabeth Dilling (of the Mothers' Movement), and James True (who formed a group called America First Inc. and called for an American pogrom). They all revolved around the America First Committee from 1940 to 1941. Its figurehead was Charles Lindbergh, the celebrated aviator who temporarily gave this conspiratorial anti-Semitism a semblance of legitimacy until it fell from grace in September 1941 after giving a speech. which was widely condemned as anti-Semitic and "un-American". When the United States entered World War II, the meaning of “America first” was abruptly reversed: it was no longer seen as patriotic, but as seditious and became the epitome of anti-Semitic Nazi sympathy.

This prevented Huey Long's former deputy, Reverend Gerald L.K. Smith - who had justified his political career by denouncing allegedly Jewish "international bankers" - had no intention of running for president in 1944, promising to fix the country's "Jewish problem". Smith ‘party called itself" America First ".

Today, in 2020, we have an America First President. Anyone who argues that Donald Trump can only be understood in relation to the modern conservative movement in America - which is most clearly shown in the right-hand swing under Barry Goldwater or in Lee Atwater's famous Southern Strategy [6] - is assuming a break with American policy Between the wars, which is by no means obvious. To take just one example, Goldwater was named an “America First” politician more than once by supporters and critics alike during his 1964 presidential campaign.

It is not just Trump's critics who recognize fascist tendencies in the rhetoric cultivated by his administration, in which violence is glorified and the rule of law, democratic processes and civil rights are disregarded. Rather, the president and his supporters regularly adopt traditions of American fascism themselves. "America First" was originally the favorite slogan of American xenophobic, nativist movements and politicians between 1915 and 1941. It started with Woodrow Wilson's loyalty test, in which immigrant “hyphenated Americans” were supposed to prove that they were for “America first”. Then the slogan became a battle cry to keep America out of the League of Nations and dissuade it from ratifying the Treaty of Versailles. The future President Warren G. Harding drove an America First campaign in 1920, although the second Klan had already adopted the slogan by then, regularly carried it on banners during marches and used it for recruitment advertisements. In Congress in 1924, the slogan was used by supporters of the Nativist and Eugenic Immigration Act. Then the self-proclaimed American fascist groups of the 1930s picked up the slogan, including the German-American Bund and the poisonous anti-Semitic America First, Inc. Between 1940 and 1941, the America First Committee finally picked it up when Lindbergh tried to convince Americans that " Jewish interests “tried to manipulate the United States into entering a European war.

Trump himself took up the “Nordicist” rhetoric of the Klansmen and American fascists of the interwar period when he said he would rather have more immigrants from Norway and fewer from “bastards” like Haiti and Africa. He extolled the “bloodlines” of Henry Ford, who wrote a series of articles in the 1920s entitled “The International Jew. A World Problem ”and in it distributed the“ Protocols of the Elders of Zion ”in America. In the same decade, young Fred Trump (future father of Donald) was arrested in the Memorial Day Parade in Queens, New York, after a fight involving Klansmen. Donald Trump is said to have owned Hitler's speeches in the 1990s. He denied ever reading it - but he is also incapable of telling the truth. And recently, in response to the killing of George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter protests, Donald Trump announced he would hold a rally in Tulsa just a year before the 100th worst pogrom against blacks in US history Times will be. At the time, no fewer than 300 African Americans were killed and 8,000 made homeless, and the city's black community was destroyed. Trump's rally should also have taken place on June 19, the so-called Juneteenth, which celebrates the end of slavery in the US and the emancipation of African Americans. For complex historical reasons, these celebrations always include the postponement of freedom and the right to vote, the belated full citizenship and the active suppression of black rights. (After widespread outrage over the clear provocation, the event was postponed for a day. Trump then claimed to have cleared up the country about Juneteenth.)

Trump's sense of white racism

Trump doesn't deal with history, but someone around him obviously does. At the same time, Trump's tremendous ignorance does not mean that he does not understand the racist and fascist rhetoric he uses. We don't need to mistake Trump for a string-puller plotting a fascist coup to see that he has a proven sense of how White Supremacism works in America without ever bothering to put his thoughts into order.

This is how fascism always proceeded in practice: if it was something, then it was opportunistic. Fascism, as Paxton writes, is accelerated by its "mobilizing passions" and driven more by feelings than thoughts. For fascists only “the historical fate of the group” counts, because “their only moral standard is the bravery of race, nation, community. They claim legitimacy by no universal standard other than the Darwinian triumph of the strongest community. ”Fascism's“ unclear and synthetic doctrines ”, combined with its ultra-nationalism and anti-intellectualism, mean that it never has a coherent set of ideological doctrines. Violence takes the place of ideology: the fascist ruler lives out his followers' idea of ​​legitimate dominance as well as their anger that other groups reject their claims by advocating equality.

Today's fascist energies in America are different from European fascism of the 1930s, but that doesn't mean they aren't fascist. It just means that they are not European and that we are not in the 1930s. They continue to focus on classically fascist tropics of nostalgic renewal, around fantasies of racial purity, around the celebration of an authentic people and the nullification of others, around the search for scapegoats for economic instability or inequality, around the rejection of the legitimacy of political opponents, around the demonization of Critics, attacks on the free press and the claim that the will of the people justifies the forcible imposition of military power. The remnants of fascism from the interwar period were brought out, prepared and put to a present-day purpose. Colored shirts may no longer sell, but colored caps are great.

Like a montage in fast motion

Reading about the immature fascist movements of 1930s America during the Trump administration feels less prophetic than anticipatory. It seems like a montage in fast motion in which a para-fascist order slowly forces itself to emerge over almost a century. It is certainly not surprising that recognizable fascist violence breaks out in the United States under Trump: his attorney general sends troops to the capital to act like a private army; armed paramilitary groups occupy state parliament buildings; Laws are passed denying certain groups citizenship and rights; and the birthplace principle guaranteed by the 14th Amendment to the Constitution is attacked.When the president declares voting an “honor” rather than a right and makes “a joke” about being president for life; when for the first time in the country's history the government chooses to include a new citizenship question in the 10-year census; and when nationwide protests in response to racial injustice are used as an excuse to contemplate martial law, we watch an American fascist order buckle.

Trump is neither abnormal nor original. Nativist reactionary populism is nothing new in America - it just had never made it into the White House. Ultimately, it matters little whether Trump is a fascist at heart as long as he is fascist. In "We Can't Do That," one of Lewis ‘characters commented on the dictator:" Buzz is not important - we have to treat the disease we spat him out for. "

German first publication of a text entitled "American Fascism: It Has Happened Here" on the website of the "New York Review of Books" (www.nybooks.com). Translation: Steffen Vogel. All footnotes are explanations by the editors.

[1] The so-called Jim Crow laws established the segregation policy in the US southern states after the American Civil War and were in force between the 1870s and 1965. They systematically disadvantaged black citizens in public and economic life.

[2] Madison Grant was also known in Germany for his eugenic books, including “The Downfall of the Great Race” from 1916. Lothrop Stoddard wrote several influential racist and anti-Semitic works, including “Der Kulturumsturz. The threat of the subhuman ”from 1922.

[3] A Kleagle in the KKK is primarily entrusted with recruiting members in a certain region.

[4] The American Liberty League existed from 1934 to 1940, it included members of the business elite and mostly conservative politicians who opposed the New Deal front.

[5] In 1935, the Supreme Court overturned the convictions of nine black teenagers falsely convicted of raping two white women by an all-white jury in Alabama for the second time. Further trials followed, with different outcomes. It was not until 2013 that the last three men in the group were pardoned posthumously.

[6] Republican politician Barry Goldwater came out with a sharp rejection of civil rights legislation. He justified the swing of the southern states from the Democrats to the Republicans, which the party consolidated with its Southern Strategy. This, as Reagan advisor Lee Atwater later admitted, wooed white voters with coded racism.