In July of 1967, after race riots gutted Newark and Detroit, requiring troops to put them down, LBJ appointed a commission to investigate what happened, and why.
The Kerner Commission reported back that “white racism” was the cause of black riots. Liberals bought it. America did not.
Richard Nixon said of the white racism charge that there is a “tendency to lay the blame for the riots on everyone but the rioters.”
The Nixon-George Wallace vote in 1968 was 57 percent to Hubert Humphrey’s 43. In 1972, Wallace was leading in the popular vote in the Democratic primaries, when he was shot in Laurel, Maryland. In November of 1972, Nixon and Agnew swept 49 states.
Among the primary causes of the ruin of FDR’s great coalition, and the rise of Nixon’s New Majority, was the belief in Middle America that liberals were so morally paralyzed by racial guilt they could not cope with minority racism, riots and crime.
And so they lost the nation for a generation.
That same moral paralysis is on display in the aftermath of the grand jury conclusion that Officer Darren Wilson acted in self-defense when he shot Michael Brown on Aug. 9 in Ferguson, Missouri.
When initial reports came in, that a police officer had confronted an unarmed black teenager on a main street at noon and shot him six times, it seemed like a case of a cop gone berserk.
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