Remember a couple of weeks ago when the Washington Post splashed so heavily the ludicrous story about the "mysterious" murder of the black, gay politician in Clarksdale in Coahoma County, Mississippi? The black killer crashed the black victim's stolen car, then confessed to the Coahoma sheriff department, headed by a black sheriff, where he had stashed the body of the black man running against the black mayor's black son. But who cares about the facts of the case when the story gives you a chance to talk about Mississippi's “dark history of racial brutality"?
I eventually surmised:
Why has the last week seen the national media break out into a frenzy over the specter of white racism?
Perhaps it goes back to the February 27th oral arguments at the Supreme Court over whether or not to bid adieu to Title 5 of the Voting Rights Act after 48 years. Justice Scalia's question about the "perpetuation of racial entitlement," about how quickly we glide from a world where affirmative action can't be ended because the beneficiaries are too weak to one where they are too strong, definitely got the press's goat. Scalia suggested that the Supreme Court is the only institution left in America with the independence and the moral backbone to say Enough Time Has Passed.
By Gregory B. Craig, Published: March 22
Gregory B. Craig, a Washington lawyer, was White House counsel from January 2009 to January 2010.
On Aug. 6, 1965, I was working in Coahoma County, Miss., trying to register new voters at the courthouse in Clarksdale. ...
That summer, we persuaded 500 African American citizens in Coahoma County to try to register to vote. ... The summer of 1965 was hot and tense, but it was not as violent as the previous summer, when three workers were murdered in Neshoba County and when the chief of police in Clarksdale, Ben Collins, reportedly shot a black boy in the head in a public playground. Nonetheless, I lived in fear ... on the dusty streets of these small Delta towns ...
Just before we left Clarksdale to drive out to Friars Point the night of Aug. 6, we learned that President Lyndon Johnson had signed the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and that the U.S. government would be sending federal registrars to Mississippi.
That was a moment of real hope and change.
You know how the neoconservatives view the whole world as if it's always Czechoslovakia in 1938? For the Washington Post editorial board, among others, various ramshackle overseas menaces (Iran/q, Hezbollah, etc.) are always the new Nazi Germany that must be crushed now before they blitzkrieg the world with their unstoppable military juggernauts.
Similarly, for the mainstream media when it comes to race, it's always Clarksdale, Mississippi in 1965. It never gets old.