Jimmy Carter: Harry Truman Fixed My Racism
In a cover story for Parade magazine, former President Jimmy Carter did an interview with historian Mark Updegrove. In the interview, Carter said that America was still a deeply racist place, and admitted to his own prior racism. Asked about Trayvon Martin and Paula Deen, Carter said:
There’s still a gross disparity in the basic rights and freedom, education quality, and economic opportunities between African-Americans and Caucasians. African-Americans still suffer from the ancient gravities of slavery and then 100 years of official legal prejudice. The unemployment rate among African-Americans is twice the rate among white Americans. We have a long way to go still.
He then added that he used to be a racist, but that his racism was supposedly ended by Harry Truman ending segregation in the military:
What [Paula Deen] did was admit what almost every southerner of her age would have to admit—that sometime in their lives they probably used the word. I’m not making an excuse – I don’t need to. I was in the navy when Truman ordained that racial discrimination be over in the military. I came home looking upon African-Americans as equals.
That would would not truly explain why Carter used a massively racist strategy in running for governor of Georgia twenty years after that.
Ben Shapiro is Editor-At-Large of Breitbart News and author of the New York Times bestseller “Bullies: How the Left’s Culture of Fear and Intimidation Silences America” (Threshold Editions, January 8, 2013). He is also Editor-in-Chief of TruthRevolt.org. Follow Ben Shapiro on Twitter @benshapiro.