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The politics of protest

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No Merchandising. Editorial Use Only. No Book Cover Usage. Mandatory Credit: Photo by Epoch/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock (5883153r) Lillian Gish The Birth Of A Nation – 1915 Director: D.W. Griffith Epoch USA Scene Still Drama/Silent The Birth Of The Nation; or The Clansman / In The Clutches Of The Ku Klux Klan Naissance d’une nation

Really interesting stuff from Omar Wasow on how Nixon weaponized public (meaning at the time overwhelmingly white — a key caveat) concern about maintaining “law and order” to get elected. This is a story told very well in, among other places, Rick Perlstein’s Nixonland, and Wasow adds a lot of rich data to the narrative.

Of course it’s important to keep in mind that 1968 was 52 years ago, and therefore an enormous number of things have changed since then. For one thing, the current president is somebody who makes George Wallace look like a statesman. For another, the country is much less white. (As a percentage of the total population, white non-Hispanics have declined from about 85% of the population to 60%).

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