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The Hardhat Riot of 1970

2,535 words

David Paul Kuhn
The Hardhat Riot: Nixon, New York City, and the Dawn of the White Working-Class Revolution
New York: Oxford University Press, 2020

The Hardhat Riot of May 8, 1970 left a subtle and lasting impact on American culture. Sensitive liberals of the Useful Idiot type, like the horror author Stephen King, look upon the Hardhats with fear and loathing. The 1983 film, based on the book of the same name by King, The Dead Zone, shows the antagonist (played by Martin Sheen) wearing a hardhat.

The story of the Hardhat Riot is told in the 2020 book The Hardhat Riot: Nixon, New York City, and the Dawn of the White Working-Class Revolution by David Paul Kuhn. The Hardhat riot is part of the breakup of the Democratic Party more generally. Kuhn starts the story with the Democrat’s breakup in the 1968 Democratic Party Convention in Chicago, but the Party had been separating along its fault lines for at least two decades prior.

The Breakup of the Democratic Party (1945-1970)

Traditionally, the Democratic Party’s core supporters were white Southern Protestants and Irish Catholics from the cities in the northern US. From the time of Andrew Jackson, the Democratic Party’s ideology was to use the US federal government to help the Yeoman class of whites, i.e. blue-collar workers. As the Democrat William Jennings Bryant put it:

The man who is employed for wages is as much a businessman as his employer. The attorney in a country town is as much a businessman as the corporation counsel in a great metropolis. . . The miners who go 1,000 feet into the earth. . . and bring forth from their hiding places the precious metals to be poured in the channels of trade are as much businessmen as the few financial magnates who in a backroom corner the money of the world.

From 1932 to 1944, the only areas of the country that reliably voted Republican were stubborn Yankees in the granite hills of northern New England. Meanwhile, the Democratic Party was ascendant, powerful, and used to victory. But in 1948, at the Party’s convention, Hubert H. Humphrey started to talk about “civil rights.” The delegates from the Deep South staged a walkout. It was from the loose thread of “civil rights” and its associated African problems that started to unravel the party more generally.

There was also the nagging problem of Communists and their sympathizers within the Democratic Party. Due to that, Joe McCarthy of Wisconsin, who later became a Senator, switched parties and became a Republican just after the end of World War II. McCarthy’s defection is important. McCarthy had some Irish ancestry and was Roman Catholic — the Democratic Party’s policies and personalities were causing a defection of traditional supporters [1] as early as the latter half of the 1940s.

Kennedy’s assassination in 1963 was also related to the breakup of the Democrats, as Kennedy was in Dallas to paper over the widening cracks caused by the Democratic Party’s embrace of “civil rights” as well as prepare for the upcoming 1964 election. His killer was a self-professed Marxist-Leninist who’d have been comfortable in FDR’s Party in 1943 but had no place in Kennedy’s Party twenty years later.

In 1968, the Democratic Party’s convention was a televised debacle. Richard Nixon eked out a victory in the general election.

The Rust Belt

In the 1950s and 1960s, New York City was a manufacturing town. Much of its population consisted of whites working blue-collar jobs. But then came the Interstate system and the suburbs. At the same time, New York City became the destination for Puerto Ricans and Negroes. The Puerto Ricans did cause some trouble, but the black migration was more widespread and devastating. Across America, the great cities of the North suffered the arrival of swarms of Sub-Saharans from the Deep South.

You can buy The World in Flames: The Shorter Writings of Francis Parker Yockey here.

In 1965, New York elected John Lindsay (1921-2000) as mayor. Lindsay was a liberal Republican Northeastern WASP. He moved in the same circles as the Bush family and charmed the press in the same way as JFK. His mayoral candidacy is notable in that he created the high-low coalition of extremely wealthy and connected whites with poor, crime-ridden blacks.

As the 1960s continued on their unstable way, New York City became overwhelmed with job losses and crime — the latter scourge was fueled by blacks behaving in typical fashion. A large part of Mayor Lindsay’s base of supporters was black, though, and he was unable to bring himself to get tough on crime. Instead, then, like today, the high part of his coalition pushed a metapolitical narrative in the media that blamed crime on “society” and all but called anyone who complained about it a bigot.

Mayor Lindsay also was able to get favorable, though dishonest, media coverage. When news broke that the Christ-like Congoid, the Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King Jr., had been shot, Lindsay went to visit Harlem, where he was poorly received. The press downplayed the ugliness of his visit and glossed over the considerable black-caused disorder that followed in New York City. The story was spun to that of Lindsay the white savior.

Looming over all of this was the Vietnam War, which by 1969 was claiming 500-plus American lives per month.

Nixon’s War

When President Nixon took over the Presidency, his biggest crisis was the Vietnam War. Nixon was thus forced to deal with the strategic circumstances created by the two Democratic administrations preceding him.

Those two administrations which preceded Nixon’s had self-sabotaged themselves with “civil rights.” In addition to the problem of integrating a biologically different population with historical grievances against the white American mainstream, “civil rights” carries with it two other negatives. The first is that to truly believe in “civil rights,” one must misread data. The second is that if a white person buys into the philosophical presuppositions of “civil rights,” then one eventually arrives at a semi-religious interpretation of events where everything done in the past by whites is sinful.

The semi-religious anti-white “civil rights” narrative and frustration with the Vietnam War gave a great deal of energy to a Leftist social protest movement, often led by Jews. The first problem, that of misreading data, or more accurately, lying, caused ever-increasing problems in Vietnam.

To explain, the Johnson administration was less than forthcoming about major problems in Southeast Asia, such as the fact the North Vietnamese were moving supplies through the neutral countries of Laos and Cambodia. As a result, there was a situation where everyone knew about the Ho Chi Minh Trail, but for a time no American official could talk openly about it. (For further reading on this matter I suggest We Were Soldiers Once. . . and Young, by Joseph Galloway and Harold Moore.)

Something universally known but unable to be spoken of is also the premier social dilemma caused by “civil rights.”

The frontier of Cambodia was in a situation where it was technically neutral but actually a major front in this conflict. Meanwhile, President Nixon had to enact his campaign promise to withdraw from the conflict and achieve what he called, “peace with honor.” To enact this plan, Nixon was required to use evasions, double talk, and betrayals, alongside bold action, bursts of honesty, and the diplomatic coup of exploiting the Sino-Soviet split. On top of that, he had to conduct military operations that violated the taboos of the earlier administration — like invade Cambodia and bomb Hanoi directly.

President Nixon announces the invasion of Cambodia. Many believed that Nixon “widened” the Vietnam War, but the North Vietnamese had been operating in Cambodia as early as 1963. Nonetheless, the invasion of Cambodia led to many anti-war protests.

Nixon had thus expanded the war after he’d been promising a conclusion. He also attacked a country many naïve liberals genuinely thought was neutral due to the lies of the earlier administration. Protests erupted across the United States. At Kent State, things got ugly fast. Protestors — many were outside agitators — burned down the ROTC building, and there were other rumors and threats, including putting LSD in the drinking water. When the fire department arrived to put out the blaze at the ROTC building, protestors fought them and cut the firehoses.

Ohio

After the arson attack, Ohio governor Jim Rhodes (1909-2001) called in the Ohio National Guard to help restore order. On May 4, 1970, students held a rally. The rally quickly became violent, and soldiers from G Troop of the 2nd Battalion 107th Cavalry fired a volley into the protestors. Four students were killed.

The Ohio National Guard fires on protestors at Kent State on May 4, 1970.

There are all sorts of ideas regarding the use of force and freedom of speech that one can ponder upon at Kent State. [2] I’ll only remark upon what I think are the most overlooked and important points.

  • The moment that armed soldiers are deployed, the political leadership has acknowledged that there is a situation that might need to be met with lethal force. All law enforcement carries with it the threat of lethal force.
  • Likewise, any soldier deployed with a weapon out of an armory or secure military installation — even within the bounds of the United States — must be given ammunition for that weapon if only to keep an armed bandit from stealing the weapons.
  • There are no “shoot to maim” or “warning shots.” Any shots fired must be carefully aimed and are “shoot to kill.”
  • The conflict between Yankees vs. Jews applies in the case of Kent State. The unit that carried out the shooting was from Ravenna, Ohio, a town founded by a Yankee from Massachusetts. The part of Ohio where Kent State is situated is also within an area reserved for settlement by the people of Connecticut. I looked into the origins of one of the soldiers who likely fired and found that his family had lived in Ohio for several generations, and lived in the parts of Ohio settled by New Englanders as early as before the War of 1812. Furthermore, the National Guardsmen fired, in a volley, shots into the most violent part of the protestors; of the four students killed, three were Jews.

The Hardhats

In response to the shooting at Kent State, students protested across America and the white world, from Havana to Berlin. New York City’s Mayor Lindsay ordered flags flown at half-staff in memory of the fallen students. Students and anti-war activists (called hippies) staged protests in downtown Manhattan, near where thousands of construction workers, wearing hardhats, were building the World Trade Center.

The construction workers were mostly ethnic, Catholic whites who didn’t have a college education and were starting to feel the pinch of the deindustrializing economy as well as fear from the rising crime wave. Many were veterans. It was their kin and kind who were in Vietnam. They were outraged by the behavior of the anti-war protestors, many of whom were shouting obscenities.

On Friday, May 8, 1970, they’d had enough. They came down from their high steel workplace and started to beat up hippies. They were joined by hundreds of Wall Street office workers. Kuhn describes the riot in depth and has quotes from participants on both sides of the fighting as well as bystanders. The police were sympathetic to the Hardhats. Anti-war activists had long made a special point to insult police in the vilest ways, and when the Hardhats came, the cops were less than enthusiastic in stopping them.

The Hardhats flew the American flag and chanted “Love it or leave it.”

The Hardhats surrounded City Hall and demanded the flag be raised to the top of the staff. There was a tense standoff, and eventually, it was raised, which led to the mob singing patriotic American songs.

The Hardhats won the day, but it was ugly. The Hardhats used iron rods and the like as clubs and ganged up on anyone that looked like a hippie. Some later regretted their actions. Hardhats became embarrassed when one of their members inadvertently snatched a religious flag during one dust-up. The NYPD conducted an internal investigation and, for the most part, white-washed the conduct of their officers.

The Unstable Aftermath and the Working-Class White’s Long March to Less

The political effects of the riot were incredible. The Republican Party gained the votes of blue-collar white workers in a polarized political climate for the first time. Previously, that only happened when the GOP fielded an overwhelmingly popular candidate, such as Dwight Eisenhower. Over the next month, hardhats staged rallies, and the coalition that elected Reagan consisting of Evangelical Protestants, working-class whites, and anti-Communists was formed.

Mayor Lindsay moved further to the political Left. He became a Democrat and his coalition deeply influenced George McGovern’s run. The coalition that Lindsay created — wealthy whites, poor and troubled non-whites, Leftists, and deviants — is mostly a losing one. In 1972, this coalition lost badly. However, Barack Obama did ride that coalition to victory in 2008.

This high-low coalition remains dangerous. Its adherents remain believers. They are unable to visualize African crime or draw any conclusions about it. They arrange all Sub-Saharan uplift schemes so that blue-caller whites pay the price for that scheme. Their position in the economy is so secure that no adjustment in trade affects them. They are comforted, not challenged, by the press. They are bedazzled by loud, radical protestors and they’re never able to follow, Edmund Burke style, the logic of Leftism to its bloody endpoint.

Kuhn quotes James Farmer, a “civil rights leader” and black official in the Nixon administration, who remarked that “when the hardhats beat on kids, they think they are beating on blacks. And the blacks know this too” (p. 271).

I believe Farmer was correct. Many of the anti-war protestors of the New Left supported “civil rights” and black criminality. Additionally, the social narrative was such that no white could criticize African pathology or even accurately describe it. Republicans, swelled by blue-collar whites, thus focused on “bussing” and other proxies rather than black crime and the trouble of the illicit second constitution that is the 1964 Civil Rights Act.

The Republicans haven’t done much to support blue-collar whites since the 1980s, although recently President Trump has enacted trade policies that might help them. Instead, the blue-collar whites experienced a terrible economic decline, and most recently they have fallen victim to the opioid epidemic. It has proven to be extremely difficult to manage the economy in such a way that ordinary blue-collar whites can thrive economically.

In other words, the work of the Hardhats is unfinished.

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Notes

[1] There is probably some sort of Blood Quantum to this defection. Joe McCarthy was not even mostly Irish. One can speculate that German Catholics in the North defected faster than Irish Catholics.

[2] Indeed, the situation was not unlike that surrounding the Boston Massacre. John Adams, who later became the second US President, successfully and eloquently defended the British soldiers.

 

14 Comments

  1. Joseph S. Salemi
    Posted August 7, 2020 at 10:08 am | Permalink

    A key political issue not mentioned in this essay concerns the New York City mayoral election of 1965, and how the improbable victory of John V. Lindsay came about,. William F. Buckley ran as a third-party conservative for the specific purpose of defeating the left-liberal “Silk Stocking” Republican Lindsay, who had always been an anomalous type. But the net effect of Buckley’s candidacy was to draw white working class votes (normally given to the Democrats) away from the Democratic candidate, thereby electing Lindsay by a plurality. The fact that Buckley did not foresee this (or that he didn’t really care) is another black mark against his reputation as a “conservative thinker.”

    The coming of the insufferable John Lindsay to power and national prominence shows that it was not only the Democrats who were going through a terrible metamorphosis. Even among Republicans, a new separation was beginning to become visible. A novel and sick loyalty was emerging: that of leftist ideology, tolerance of black criminality via “civil rights” pieties, and a blistering hatred of the white working class. Today that diseased loyalty is more widespread than anyone in 1965 could have imagined possible. It is absolutely official and obligatory for the Democratic Party.

  2. HamburgerToday
    Posted August 7, 2020 at 10:27 am | Permalink

    Great essay. I was unaware of this piece of White working-class history. Thank you for bringing this forward.

  3. Razvan
    Posted August 7, 2020 at 4:14 pm | Permalink

    Very informative; the events described here are similar with the events happened in Romania in 1990 (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golaniad – it is a poor description but gives the idea). The hardhats (miners) were beating intellectuals and students (ugly is too mild, things were monstrous) on behalf of the jewish communistic left (of course the KGB’s long hand was very present at the moment – long story here).

    There were two main geo-strategic consequences:
    – a brain drain never seen in Europe; I do not have high hopes that the Romanian people will ever recover from this, at least by natural means
    – the events signaled that Romania is a dangerous country with a savage people that needs to be quarantined; so the world focused on China rather than Eastern Europe

    Exactly as in US, the hardhats won nothing, they were discarded fast by their communist idols.

    And, exactly as in US, the only thing that remained was a visceral fear, hate, and distrust between the blue collars and the white collars.

    This is why the white collars want to get rid of the blue collars, even they are of the same race or ethnicity. These events leave huge marks that may never heal. I do not know about US, but in Romania the confrontation between miners and intellectuals was carefully staged, and the tension strategy masterfully played until the violent outburst that almost shattered the nation. Right now it is obvious that the both parts of the conflict were played against each others by the same peoples.

    An white student from Kent State, even he knows now he was misguided, if beaten by a white mob will never forget nor forgive them. And his white collar kids are keeping the grudge very much alive.

    Who played the hardtops against the students and the students against the hardtops? And why?

    My opinion is that these are staged events, and those who directed them were aware of what they are doing.

  4. Vauquelin
    Posted August 7, 2020 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

    Great stuff and a valuable read for a non-American to see the long run-up to the current mess in every detail. The constant thread of underlying ethnic awareness of middle class whites being ground up in the gears of the cruel multiracial experiment is a testament to our explicit and implicit collective will towards survival.

  5. Lord Shang
    Posted August 8, 2020 at 4:18 am | Permalink

    Another solid piece from M. de Camp. This author reads a lot of books, and then writes reviews of them, keeping the wheels of our movement turning, so to speak.

    I have been proposing the answer to white working class travails at least since the 90s:

    CAPITALISM IN ONE COUNTRY

    IOWs. if we want to rebuild the white middle class (and to be fair, such policies would mostly also help other races’ non-elite workers, though not as much as they would help whites), here’s how to do it:

    1. End immigration, including acceptance of “refugees”
    2. Secure the border, and deport all illegals (easier said than done, but it can be done, if forcefully pursued over an extended period)
    3. Eliminate all corporate income taxes – but only for corporations with 90%+ of their workforces located in America; enact new per capita fees on “outsourcing”
    4. Repeal Most Favored Nation trading status with China
    5. Agitate to remove China from the WTO
    6. Eliminate the Federal Reserve and fractional reserve banking (a form of fraud), and redefine the dollar as a unit weight of gold (the 100% gold dollar)
    7. Replace the income tax with a uniform tariff “wall” around the US (admittedly tough to legislate)
    8. Radically simplify the tax code
    9. Cut the payroll tax in half, but remove the income cap on it (this will save Social Security, and hit the disproportionately disloyal high income earners hard)
    10. Eliminate the evil Department of Housing and Urban Development (a key institution for destroying white working class neighborhoods, both demographically and in terms of property values, via public housing construction and refugee resettlement {though for the latter, see Pt.1})
    11. Aggressively eliminate affirmative racism (obviously, the main victims of which are white men, esp conservatives)
    12. Place legal limits on the creation of new “financial instruments” (which are almost all unnecessary and unhelpful, and which disproportionately enrich Jewish financiers)
    13. Crack down hard on crime, via proactive policing, harsh criminal penalties (or at least, mass incarceration/warehousing), liberalized self-defense laws, and full 2nd Am restoration.

    If anyone is interested, I can explain the internal logic of these suggestions at greater length. Taken together, they would completely rebuild white America, at least economically – and this even with the huge and unwanted nonwhite presence (none of the above conflicts with the ultimate goal of a territorially apartheid and sovereign ethnostate).

  6. Francis XB
    Posted August 8, 2020 at 5:38 am | Permalink

    The last half century has seen several White working class dissident mobilizations like the hardhat and anti-busing movements. The dilemma is that their energies were diverted into voting for Republican candidates who (in the main) disappeared into distant capitols to carry out the establishment’s agenda.

    What is needed is to convert White energies across class lines into an activist movement which (as various people on CC have pointed out) would include:
    * legal defense
    * propaganda/media/info ops
    * alt-tech to provide secure platforms
    * security for pro-White speakers and rallies
    * wider fronts to mobilize students, artists, etc.
    * networking with nationalists-populists worldwide
    * putting people into the streets (per the hardhat and anti-busing actions)
    * financial mobilization to support any and all of the above (very important!)

    So why has no pro-White general activist movement arisen? Part of the reason is that the Republican-Conservative establishment does not want an activist movement because it would be a challenge to their own prerogatives. Too many White people in the streets, and Americans might start questioning the establishment setup – then for Conservatives Inc it’s no more Beltway echelon office job and no more country club golf games with NY Times book editors.

    A secondary reason is that too many middle Americans see politics as entirely a function of voting. “Wait until the next election,” goes up the battlecry, “then we’ll vote in some Real Republicans(tm) who will cut taxes, increase defense spending and balance the budget!” (Wash, rinse, repeat.) The fact that Real Republicans(tm) have held the majority in Congress in several sessions over the last decades and have failed to stop the march of the Left agenda goes by the boards.

    The Dissident Right has made a heroic attempt to create an activist movement, the highpoint during the 2016 candidacy of Donald Trump with the great meme war and the street actions of that time. The establishment responded with the post-Charlottesville repression and continuing through to the current wave of de-platformings.

    Today, there is a general discontent among Whites over the leftist rioting, the attacks on American culture, the political correctness, and the implications of globalism. The question becomes: how to convert that discontent into a wider activist movement? New tactics and technologies need to be developed…stay tuned.

  7. Posted August 8, 2020 at 8:07 am | Permalink

    Now that’s a boot party!

  8. 1971
    Posted August 8, 2020 at 10:49 am | Permalink

    Two obvious pop culture references associated with the riots are the movie Joe and the TV show All in the Family. Archie in the latter was not a hardhat, but sometimes they would say that he was the supervisor of, or worked at, a loading dock. Close enough. Norman Lear let the hardhats off easily, creating a loveable teddy bear of a “bigot,” Archibald Bunker. He and Carroll O’Connor had to have meant to do so. Why? I don’t know, but maybe because of it Lear was able to own 70s sitcoms. I applaud him for it. Who knows what would have happened if he made Archie an unlovable bigot?

    • Joseph S. Salemi
      Posted August 8, 2020 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

      I was a young guy when “Joe” and “All In The Family” came out, and I hated both of them. It was clear to anyone that both the movie and the TV series were meant to denigrate and ridicule white working-class ethnics — their beliefs, their habits, their lifestyle, their speech, and their attitudes.

      This actually started much earlier, if you remember the 1957 film “A Face In The Crowd,” starring Andy Griffith and Patricia O’Neill. There the contempt is directed against rural white Americans, but it is just as vicious and blatant. And exactly as in “Joe” and “All In The Family,” the strong smell of left-liberal politics permeated the film.

      The audience who may have thought of Archie Bunker as a “loveable teddy bear” was minuscule. The people who really enjoyed the show were those who were already proselytized to be left-liberals, and whose hatred of white working-class ethnics was solidly established. That creep Richard Goldstein (who edited The Village Voice) was already referring to the outer boroughs of New York City as “White Ethnica,” and he didn’t mean it affectionately.

      • I Know a Song
        Posted August 8, 2020 at 5:16 pm | Permalink

        I was four or five when I saw the opening credits for All in the Family, as my mother put me to bed. The air shot of Manhattan and then going to Queens/Brooklyn, to this day, when I see it I get teary eyed. The opening theme song, “Those Were the Days,” is as good as it gets for a TV theme song, maybe tied with “Welcome Back Kotter.” The amazing thing about All in tbe Family is that the closing theme is so good, too. It is an original song by Roger Kellaway and Carroll O’Connor that sounds like a New Orleans James Booker classic. It should be well known and played at the Kennedy Center. Most people who have seen the show don’t know it has lyrics:

        https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=RnWbT66VQno

      • Traddles
        Posted August 8, 2020 at 6:40 pm | Permalink

        I agree with you 100%, Mr. Salemi. People like Norman Lear and Fred Silverman turned TV into a massive liberal/left-wing agitprop and sleaze machine during the 70’s. As you mentioned, the roots of this problem stretched back earlier in TV and movies, but until Lear and Silverman did their dirty work, there were still a lot of decent, patriotic programs which didn’t push political agendas. In the 70’s, along with bashing the working class, traditionalism and patriotism, there was a determined effort to get rid of programming with rural and small-town settings, even though those programs had been very popular.

        Archie Bunker might have been made to look sympathetic occasionally, and viewers might have liked his “reactionary” views, but the constant, overal messages of the episodes were that conservatism was bad, and liberalism/leftism was good. Lear knew how to suck viewers in, I’ll give him that.

      • Lord Shang
        Posted August 8, 2020 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

        Dr. Salemi:

        Yes and no. You are correct that Archie was meant to be a stand-in for blue collar whites and moral/cultural (and racial) traditionalists in general, and a figure of ridicule for the enjoyment of ‘superior’ (?) liberals. Joe Sobran, you might recall, once averred that All in the Family was entirely an expression of what he termed “native alienism” (today we might call this the mentality of “self-hating” or “virtue-signaling” whites, so virulently on display in the recent mass episodes of BLM “street imperialism”).

        But you are entirely wrong about how Archie was viewed (as Sobran also noted). What the disgusting Normal Lear discovered – to his everlasting amazement – was that the bulk of AITF’s audience loved and agreed with Archie, and in fact thought The Meathead (played by the (((similarly disgusting))) Rob Reiner) was the figure conjured to be laughed at. I think Sam Francis, in one of his many MARs essays, came to a similar conclusion.

        I grew up watching AITF all through late grade school and high school – precisely the time of the show’s greatest popularity. Once I entered college in the late 70s, I left all TV behind permanently (the sole exception was Seinfeld in the 90s, which I loved, and if I owned a TV would watch it still in reruns). Whenever AITF (occasionally) crops up in conversation with my 50 and 60-something friends, we all recall it – but mainly Archie – with great fondness, despite its liberal POV, which we all recognize, at least ex post facto.

        • I Know a Song
          Posted August 9, 2020 at 7:26 am | Permalink

          Did Lear have such a blind spot that he couldn’t know audiences would love Archie? The episode I always think of is the one where two blacks are burgling the Bunker house and Archie and Meathead catch them in the act. I can’t remember if Archie had a gun, but somehow the blacks don’t bolt or fight, and there’s a standoff on the interior stairs, with a hilarious conversation. (This is ridiculous and contrived…wait, a sitcom is ridiculous and contrived? I’m going to write my congressman!) At one point Meathead takes the blacks’ side, and immediately they jeer him, with utmost contempt, saying “oh, you must be a LIB-ER-AL!” Scenes like that are why blacks liked or even loved All in the Family. There was also the famous scene where Archie sides with a black neighbor to keep Puerto Ricans out of the neighborhood, and the unsubtle point was that blacks can be racist too. Lear had to have an agenda, of course. What it exactly was, I don’t know.

      • MW
        Posted August 10, 2020 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

        You’re correct about “A Face in the Crowd” as an anti-rural, anti-Southerner flick. Ironically, Griffin would star in another similar film a year later. That being “No Time for Sergeants” (1958) which was not only anti-rural & anti-Southerner but also blatantly anti-military. It made the white males running the U.S. Air Force at that time look like a bunch of boneheads. Keep in mind this is at the height of the Cold War & right after the Soviets launched Sputnik & what became known as the space race.

        As far as TV, I actually gave up watching it back around 1970. I always thought “All in the Family” was nonsense. I will forever agree with (((Newton Minow’s))) speech at the National Association of Broadcasters convention in 1961. Minow, was the FCC Commissioner at the time under JFK. He called television “a vast wasteland ” & almost 60 years later all I can say is that it’s far worse than even that condemnation.

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    Reuben

    The Node

    The New Austerities

    Morning Crafts

    The Passing of a Profit & Other Forgotten Stories

    Gold in the Furnace

    Defiance