September 4, 2010

George Wallace - 1976 - No longer a Leopard. Those really aren't spots.

The name George Wallace has rapidly faded from view over the years. He is probably best known as the Alabama Governor who was a staunch supporter of Segregation and States rights. During his unsuccessful bid for the 1972 Presidential nomination, Wallace was victim of an assassination attempt that left him paralyzed from the waist down. So by 1976 his bid for the Presidency was viewed more as a symbolic gesture than an actual attempt.

Wallace came to be the symbol for everything prejudicial and intolerant. And like many of his peers (Strom Thurmond comes to mind), spent the remainder of his political life white-washing and non-denial denying that he perceived or had done anything wrong.

Bill Monroe (NBC News) :”As a Presidential candidate in 1976 who once said that he favored segregation, are you unwilling at this point to say that, at this point you do not any longer favor segregation?

George Wallace:“Segregation is gone. I no longer favor going back to any attempt to reinstall what we had years ago which was separation . . .”

Monroe: “ Do you personally believe in it anymore?”

Wallace: “I believe that we ought to have the system that we have now, which is non-discrimination which you can call Integration.”

History has a curious habit of remembering - much to the dismay of those Leopards wishing to change their spots.

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