When black people get angry after an unarmed black person is murdered and broadcasts all over tv and the internet, white people ten to call these moments of “black rage.” But is it black rage or white rage that is at work in these types of moments?
Since 1865 and the passage of the 13th Amendment, every time African Americans have made advances towards full participation in this democracy, white reaction has fueled a deliberate and relentless rollback of their gains.
The end of the Civil War and Reconstruction was greeted with the Black Codes and Jim Crow; the Supreme Court’s landmark 1954 Brown v. Board of Education decision was met with the shutting down of public schools throughout the South while taxpayer dollars financed segregated white private schools; the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Voting Rights Act of 1965 triggered a coded but powerful response, the so-called Southern Strategy and the War on Drugs that disenfranchised millions of African Americans while propelling presidents Nixon and Reagan into the White House.
Carefully linking these and other historical flash points when social progress for African Americans was countered by deliberate and cleverly crafted opposition, Anderson pulls back the veil that has long covered actions made in the name of protecting democracy, fiscal responsibility, or protection against fraud, rendering visible the long lineage of white rage.
Compelling and dramatic in the unimpeachable history it relates, White Rage will add an important new dimension to the national conversation about race in America.