America’s Worst Year
The most traumatic year in recent American history—1968—offers some disquieting lessons for the present.
Last week, I told
that 1968 was worse than 2020, but 2020 has a long way to go. Extended version of that argument, here:
Short version: 68 WAS worse, but the comparison is not reassuring.
"The most traumatic year in modern American history was 1968. But what is now the second-most traumatic year, 2020, still has seven months to run. The comparison provides little comfort, and several reasons for concern." Read
For those trying to compare:1968 and 2020: Lessons From America’s Worst Year - The Atlantic
"In some ways, the comparison between 1968 and 2020 might make Americans today feel better, or at least consoled on the basis that things have been terrible before. But here are two implications that cut the other way."
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Can’t recommend this by
enough, particularly the end for a political upshot. Trump’s hope that civil unrest drives the public toward crackdown rhetoric sits uncomfortably against the fact that he’s the one overseeing and stoking the disorder.
"Richard Nixon had much more going for him in 1968 than Donald Trump does in 2020 ... but protests and fear of disorder ... drew people to Nixon as the law-and-order candidate in 1968," writes
There’s a lot to like in this
piece on differences between 1968 and today but I love that Jim cited Nixon’s acceptance speech at the RNC - which is a simply fantastic political address
I probably should have included this in my piece about 1968:
But here it is now: Robert F. Kennedy, speaking on night Martin Luther King was shot dead, two months before RFK himself was shot dead. Six minutes, worth it all:
Now more than 2,400 cities shown on map of demos for BLM. Early, initial comparison for 2020 was to chaos of 1968 (including by me last month
) . Better, more hopeful comparison to civil rights/voting rights movement 1963-65.
Brings back memories: "Richard Nixon had much more going for him in 1968 than Donald Trump does in 2020 ... but protests and fear of disorder ... drew people to Nixon as the law-and-order candidate in 1968," writes
on a comparison a lot of us are thinking about these days