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America in Mourning After MLK's Shocking Assassination: Photos

January 16, 2019 in History

By Erin Blakemore

Emmett Till. Medgar Evers. Harry and Harriette Moore. The Civil Rights Movement had lost more than its fair share of heroes by 1968. But when Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was gunned down on the balcony of a Memphis hotel on April 4 of that year, it seemed like the death knell for one of the United States’ most effective—and divisive—social movements.

As word of the assassination spread, public and private mourning for King, including multiple funerals and a nationwide period of grief began. So did riots, which broke out in nearly 100 American cities, sparked by King’s death but fueled by longstanding social inequity and discrimination.

President Lyndon B. Johnson announced a day of mourning in King’s honor. In the immediate aftermath of King’s murder, Robert F. Kennedy, then the presumed Democratic nominee for president, quickly addressed King’s death, urging calm and asking people to choose love over lawlessness and work toward justice.

The body of the slain Civil Rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. lies in state at the R.S. Lewis funeral home in Memphis, Tennessee. Hundreds of mourners filed in on April 5, 1968, before his body was sent to Atlanta for burial.

View the 11 images of this gallery on the original article

Three days after his death, Nina Simone performed a brand-new song written by her bass player, Gene Taylor, in response to the assassination. “Why? (The King of Love Is Dead) was a 15-minute-long cry of pain that asked what would happen now that King was gone. “Why was he killed?” she said later. “It was bigotry that sealed his fate.”

King’s death was marked by a memorial service at the funeral home where King was laid out and two funerals in Atlanta, Georgia. The first was held for a group of family and friends in King’s spiritual home: Ebenezer Baptist Church, where King and his father had both served as pastor. During the ceremony, Coretta Scott King, his wife, appeared “a dry-eyed frieze of heartbreak” to one reporter. She requested that the church play a recording of “The Drum Major Instinct,” a sermon her husband had delivered earlier that year. In it, he said he didn’t want a long funeral or eulogy, and that he hoped people would mention that he had given his life to serving others. …read more


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How Playing a Pilot in WWII Docs Helped Reagan Launch His Political Career

January 16, 2019 in History

By H. W. Brands

Reagan’s role in the U.S. government’s war films helped burnish the future president’s image and shape his world view.

Ronald Reagan always thought World War II had cost him his chance at reaching the top of the marquee of Hollywood stars. His best performance came in a film, Kings Row, that premiered just as the movie business was following other industries in converting to wartime production. By the end of the war, Reagan’s moment had passed, and it never came again.

In truth, there was more to the story than bad timing. Reagan simply didn’t have the dramatic chops of Henry Fonda or Jimmy Stewart. Reagan was a fine supporting actor, but he couldn’t carry a film. Jack Warner, Reagan’s boss at Warner Bros. studio, understood. Told in 1965 that Reagan was running for California governor, Warner reportedly quipped, “No—Jimmy Stewart for governor; Ronald Reagan for best friend.”

Yet whether or not World War II derailed Reagan’s movie career, it put him on the path to another career, in which he reached greater heights than he ever could have in Hollywood. Reagan entered the military and was informed that he could do his country the most useful service by continuing to make movies. His eyesight was too poor to risk assigning him to any active theater of the war. “If we sent you overseas you’d shoot a general,” an examining doctor told him, as Stephen Vaughn writes in Ronald Reagan in Hollywood. “And you’d miss him,” the doctor’s colleague added.”

Lt. Ronald Reagan and actress Joan Leslie in the 1943 Warner Bros film, This is the Army.

READ MORE: Why Ronald Reagan Had a Record Eight Shutdowns

So Reagan reported to Culver City, California, where Jack Warner had set up the U.S. Army’s First Motion Picture Unit. Actors and technicians in uniform made promotional and instructional films, chiefly for the Army’s Air Forces. Reagan had played a pilot in earlier films and was a natural for an airman. He’d been a radio announcer before becoming an actor, and his voice was perfect as the narrator for inspirational documentaries about America’s heroes of the air.

Reagan’s wartime roles caused audiences to see—and hear—him in a new light. Though he never came under enemy fire, to many Americans he was the face and voice of those who did. Newsreel footage of actual battles left most of the participants too …read more


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See All The Crafty Ways Americans Hid Alcohol During Prohibition

January 16, 2019 in History

By Christopher Klein

The Improbable Prohibition Agents Who Outsmarted Speakeasy Owners

How Prohibition Put the ‘Organized’ in Organized Crime

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The Deceptive Lure of Carlsonomics

January 16, 2019 in Economics

By Michael D. Tanner

Michael D. Tanner

In the Broadway musical Chess, KGB agent Alexander
Molokov rejects the West’s choice of consumerism and
individual choice over communal solidarity: “It’s the
weak who believe tawdry untruths about freedom. Trinkets in
airports, sufficient to lead them astray.” One can hear
echoes of Molokov’s critique in Tucker Carlson’s recent
series of monologues on Fox News.

One might be less concerned about Tucker’s cranky
nostalgia for Archie Bunker’s America if he weren’t
part of a growing strain of American conservatism that is
suspicious of — if not hostile to — free-market

Most prominent, of course, is President Trump, whose attitude to
the free market has long been indifferent at best. Simply consider
his opposition to free trade; his calls to regulate businesses he
doesn’t like, such as Amazon and Facebook; his support for
subsidies in favored industries such as farming and

But increasingly Trump is joined by a chorus of populist
conservatives who sound a lot more like Elizabeth Warren or
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez than Ronald Reagan or William F. Buckley
Jr. Ann Coulter, for instance, has entertained AOC’s call for
a 70 percent tax rate, suggested a wealth tax, and criticized
corporate tax cuts.

Coulter and Tucker, of course, are provocateurs. But it’s
harder to excuse serious conservatives such as Oren Cass, Henry
Olson, Michael Brendan Dougherty, J. D. Vance, and Ross Douthat,
among others. All these thinkers have written favorably of
government policies to regulate the economy. Douthat, for instance,
calls on conservatives to embrace government action to secure what
he calls a “family wage” for Americans. In a similar
vein, Oren Cass suggests that the U.S. embrace German-style labor
regulation and welfare payments to low-wage workers. And several
conservative scholars have recently called for the government to
establish universal family leave.

I’m going to leave to others the debate about virtue and
whether markets have contributed to the breakdown of morality, as
Tucker warns. I will note, however, that those good old days
weren’t all that moral if measured by how we treated women,
minorities, and others. Nor should we assume that the coerced
conformity actually represented some higher form of virtue.

But Tucker and his fellow populists also get the economics
wrong. It is doubtful that Carlson or the others really want to
return to the standards of living of, say, the 1950s. After all,
it’s not just the elites who are better off today. Yes, the
rich have gotten richer, but in many ways it’s the poor and
the working class that have gained the most from the economic
growth of the last half-century.

And it’s not just a question of the poor being able to buy
cheap things, as Tucker says. …read more

Source: OP-EDS