Monday, June 11, 2007
This Day in the History of Evil
On this day in 1963, Governor George Wallace (D) stood in the way of two black students, Vivian Malone and James Hood, matriculating at the University of Alabama; but after things were explained to him by federal marshals and Deputy U.S. Attorney General Nicholas Katzenbach, he backed down at the "schoolhouse door" at Foster Auditorium. I was living in Mobile at the time and I saw most of this live on television. I was just ten years old, had attended integrated schools in Denver and I thought two things: 1) I couldn't understand why black students couldn't attend the University of the state in which they lived; and, 2) Wallace was a pussy. I can still see the Il Duce sort of smug upthrust chin of defiance he affected after he finished his brief speech in the very short time before he stepped aside. You can see a hint of it in the photo above.