Master of the Senate: The Years of Lyndon Johnson - Part 5 Chapter 31 Summary & Analysis

Robert Caro
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Part 5 Chapter 31 Summary

LBJ's greatest legacy is the civil rights legislation that he championed as president and he sought to convince people that he had been unprejudiced his entire life. Biographers generally took him at his word. Bigoted men, however, financed his rise to power and tape recordings made in the Oval Office show that LBJ's unguarded conversations could match their insensitivity. His mouthing racial stereotypes have been well documented in the numerous biographies. During World War II, he talked about the "menace" of yellow dwarves; later, blacks and Latinos were proclaimed lazy and prone to drunkenness and violence. As NYA director for Texas, he kept blacks in their place with terms like nigger and boy.

The Texas Hill Country was too dry to support a cotton plantation economy, so blacks were less numerous than across the Deep South; while LBJ grew up among...

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