There is some sense that when we talk about the period leading up to the New Deal and beyond, that we are talking about progressives in the North making a tragic, yet necessary, bargain with white racists conservatives in the South. In fact what Ira Katznelson shows in Fear Itself is something a little more complicated. The white supremacists in his book are, indeed, for the most part, Southern. But they also are very much married to to the prospect of progressive liberal reform. It may break our brains a bit to imagine, say, a Southern white supremacist backing railroad unions. But that's actual history.
...it is practically impossible, without great loss of life, especially at the present time, to prevent lynching of Negro rapists when the crime is committed against the white women of the South."
...strictly a white man's country, with a white man's civilization, and any dream on the part of the Negro Race to share social and political equality will be shattered in the end.
You know folks, I run Washington. I'm mayor there...Some niggers came to see me one time in Washington to try to get the right to vote there. The leader was a smart nigger. Of course he was half white. I told him that the nigger would never vote in Washington. Hell, if we give 'em the right to vote up there, half the niggers in the South will move into Washington and we'll have a black Government. No Southerner would sit in Congress under those conditions.
Theodore Bilbo worked to block funding for Howard University, tried to initiate a "Back to Africa" campaign for colonizing black citizens, attempted to segregate the national parks, dismissed multiracial children as "a motley melee of misceginated mongrels," attempted to ban interracial marriage in Washington, D.C., and raged against antilynching legislation that would compel "Southern girls to use the stools and toilets of damn syphilitic women." And he did this as a progressive.
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