Walter E. Williams and Emmett Till
Emmett Till: The Sacrificial Lamb of the Civil Rights Movement includes several remembrances from prominent blacks about the Emmett Till murder, which I have discussed here . One of them is from none other than Walter E. Williams, the well-known free market economist at George Mason University and colleague of L and P bloggers, Pete Boettke and Don Boudreaux. Here is what he had to say:
The Till incident struck me as something offensive. It galvanized black people to focus their outrage against those kinds of injustices. One thing it did to me; it did lead me to punch one of those rebels in the face when I was stationed at Fort Jackson, in 1959; I was twenty-three. One guy in my union [unit?], a real redneck said to me,"I'm from Parkersville; that's where we lynched Emmett Till." It led to a fight, but then it wasn't really a fight. I punched him hard in the face. I had been sent to the South from Philadelphia without being educated about the nature of the Southern life style.
Kenneth R Gregg - 5/25/2005
Always thought Walter Williams had a lot of guts! I met him once when he came to speak at a predominantly black college in Los Angeles. Was very impressed with his demeanor and courage.
Just a thought.
James Otteson - 5/25/2005
I love this story! One thing I like about libertarians is their spunk. I can't tell you how many times I would rather settle disagreements with faculty and administrators with a good one-on-one five-minute fistfight than by our current method of endless intrigue via committees, discussions, e-mail, gossiping, sniping from cover, etc. etc.