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Shocking the ConscienceA Reporter's Account of the Civil Rights Movement$
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Simeon Booker and Carol McCabe Booker

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9781617037894

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781617037894.001.0001

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A Southern President

A Southern President

(p.232) 18 A Southern President
Shocking the Conscience

Simeon Booker

University Press of Mississippi

The assassination of John F. Kennedy sparked feelings of apprehension and uncertainty about the future of civil rights in black America. His successor, Lyndon B. Johnson, was weak in the area of civil rights. Two days after JFK’s death, Johnson began talking to civil rights leaders, including National Urban League executive director Whitney Young, to win their support for the passage of the late president’s civil rights bill. Like JFK before him, Johnson was aware of the growing influence of the black press, which explained his decision to invite John H. Johnson, publisher of Jet and Ebony, to the White House. This chapter focuses on Johnson’s campaign to have the Civil Rights Act of 1964 passed in Congress and his alleged dalliance with his black secretary Geraldine Whittington.

Keywords:   civil rights, Lyndon B. Johnson, Whitney Young, black press, John H. Johnson, Jet, Ebony, Civil Rights Act of 1964, Geraldine Whittington, John F. Kennedy

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