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Women of the
Racism and Gender in the 1920s
Kathleen M. Blee
Ignorant. Brutal. Male. These stereotypes of the Ku Klux Klan offer a misleading picture. In Women of the Klan, sociologist Kathleen Blee unveils an accurate portrait of a racist movement that appealed to ordinary people throughout the country. In so doing she dismantles the popular notion that politically involved women are always inspired by pacifism, equality and justice.
“All the better people,” a former Klanswoman assures us, were in
the Klan. During the 1920s, when the Klan was at its largest (about
5 million), perhaps half a million white native-born Protestant
women joined the Women’s Ku Klux Klan (WKKK). Like their male
counterparts, Klanswomen held reactionary views on race,
nationality, and religion. But their perspectives on gender roles
were often progressive.
In Boston’s greatest daily, ace reporter Howie Carr traps Sen. Edward M. Kennedy on the record just after the avuncular senator’s three-martini breakfast:
“There’s some additional something going on here, vaguely, and it’s going to involve some kind of, uh, sexual harassment on Willie that because I was not told, I was not told ever, ever was told that the Palm Beach Police wanted to speak to me about an alleged incident of Willie Smith raping some girl.
“I was never told that. And the record when you see it and when it comes out will never, will not suggest that I was, and since that time that, uh, I found out that was the allegation, I have been available, uh, to the police and responded to all those questions and I certainly would have if I knew that the charge had been rape, would have done it.
“But that was never, that was never. I was never told that. If I
had been told that, if I had been told that I certainly would have.
But I was never told that and you’re gonna have to look at the
records of who told what to who.”
(May 11, 1991)
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?