Federal Law and Southern Order: Racial Violence and Constitutional Conflict in the Post-Brown South

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University of Georgia Press, 1995 - Social Science - 387 pages
Federal Law and Southern Order, first published in 1987, examines the factors behind the federal government's long delay in responding to racial violence during the 1950s and 1960s. The book also reveals that it was apprehension of a militant minority of white racists that ultimately spurred acquiescent state and local officials in the South to protect blacks and others involved in civil rights activities. By tracing patterns of violent racial crimes and probing the federal government's persistent failure to punish those who committed the crimes, Michal R. Belknap tells how and why judges, presidents, members of Congress, and even Justice Department and Federal Bureau of Investigation officials accepted the South's insistence that federalism precluded any national interference in southern law enforcement. Lulled into complacency by the soothing rationalization of federalism, Washington for too long remained a bystander while the Ku Klux Klan and others used violence to sabotage the civil rights movement, Belknap demonstrates.

In the foreword to this paperback edition, Belknap examines how other scholars, in works published after Federal Law and Southern Order, have treated issues related to federal efforts to curb racial violence. He also explores how incidents of racial violence since the 1960s have been addressed by the state legal systems of the South and discusses the significance for the contemporary South of congressional legislation enacted during the 1960s to suppress racially motivated murders, beatings, and intimidation.

 

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Contents

TWO The Violent Aftermath of the Brown Decision
27
T H R E E The Attack on Bombing
53
FO U R Crisis Management in the Kennedy Administration
70
E The Problem of Protection
106
That Bloody Freedom Summer
128
S E V E N The Price and Guest Cases
159
EIGHT The South on Trial
183
N IN E A Federal Law
205
T EN The Restoration of Southern Order
229
Copyright

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Page 357 - Eugene D. Genovese, Roll, Jordan, Roll: The World the Slaves Made (New York: Pantheon Books, 1974); Leslie Howard Owens, This Species of Property: Slave Life and Culture in the Old South (New York: Oxford University Press, 1976); Herbert G.

About the author (1995)

Michal R. Belknap teaches criminal law, constitutional law, and American legal history at California Western School of Law and is an adjunct professor of American history at the University of California, San Diego. Federal Law and Southern Order was named an Outstanding Book by the Gustavus Myers Center for the Study of Intolerance and Human Rights.

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