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African-Americans during WWII

Discussion in 'WWII General' started by GunSlinger86, May 8, 2016.

  1. GunSlinger86

    GunSlinger86 Well-Known Member

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    There was an inherent oxymoron that existed thru the war. Why was it alright for Fascist America to exist with the segregation, racism, and prejudice in the US military and at home during WWII against the blacks, but we were fighting the 'Righteous" battle to stop fascism abroad, that their brand of racism was unacceptable, but the complete hypocrisy existed with the US?
     
  2. Dave55

    Dave55 Member

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    You have a point to make with that post?

    We all know what the situation was in 1940 era America.

    What do you expect to hear in reply here?
     
  3. GunSlinger86

    GunSlinger86 Well-Known Member

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    I'm just looking for feedback and opinions on apparent hypocrisy under the guise of "goodwill."
     
  4. A-58

    A-58 Cool Dude

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    Trying to make a PC version of history?
     
  5. USMCPrice

    USMCPrice Idiot at Large

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    At least they weren't being run through ovens.
     
  6. gtblackwell

    gtblackwell Well-Known Member Patron  

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    If Americans were really Fascist then they would have been on the Axis side. I was born near Selma , Alabama and well remember how terribly African Americans were treated. I actually lived outside of the town and had no white neighbors for about 6-7 miles. It is not an excuse but most Southern caucasians thought it was normal behavior to see blacks as lessor beings.. They were not farm workers but treated more like surfs, bound to the land and lived in pretty grim conditions. A sociologist might could have understood it. Separate but equal education was far from equal. Most of the period of my youth saw policies of keeping black people in a state of servitude and cheap labor. The more things change , the ......

    I was reading an article about Chatsworth House in the UK. It said at a fine elaborate dinner party as much would be spent on a single dinner serving, for one person, as a scullery maid would earn in a year. Of course the maid had uniforms provided and a small room in which to live. Not that different from the US in the south. It would never occur to me to call the British landed gentry Fascist, is was the time in which they lived.

    At 76 it is interesting to recall all the social changes that have occurred in my life time. Today the hypocrisy of which you speak is obvious and apparent. In 1940 it was not so clear. Many find that hard to believe today but I think quite differently . The world was vastly different.

    Mistreating people , giving them very poor education, lesser degrees of medical care, even withholding medicine to study the outcomes, making them use separate water fountains, toilets, not allowing them to eat and sleep in the same establishments is incomprehensible to any fair minded person today . But they pale in view of the factory scale mass death camps where whole families were murdered in the millions , men, women and children, even infants because of their religion, culture, mental state ot even speech.

    If you are truly interested in this aspect of our history try to be open minded, immerse yourself in reading and all types of research and try to fully understand the history and socital developement of all homosapiens. We have a near unimaginably wide range of capabilities, one of which is jumping to perhaps too rapid conclusions.

    In today's world your premise has much merit, studied closely, over time ,you might understand it better during it's period. Few of us are perfect.

    Best regards,

    Gaines
     
  7. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    I agree with Gaines. I am 69 and was raised in Philadelphia. When I was in college, I witnessed on TV the hateful things that went on in the South. Things weren't much better in the North, just more hidden. When I was growing up, my parents made sure to teach me that I was no better than anyone else. Hypocrisy? Racism? Segregation? All of them existed in America in 1940. However, we were never Fascist. While it took a while, and some still resist, give us credit for at least trying to change. We never considered putting the "others" to death because they were different. The Nazis in Germany and elsewhere and the Fascists in Italy had a whole different world-view. I don't understand how you can equate the US with the Fascists and Nazis.
     
  8. CAC

    CAC Ace of Spades

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    But what if the "blacks" controlled a large portion of the US's money...? What if they owned many businesses and housing...what if they were evicting "white" citizens/families from their homes because they couldn't pay rent...? What would the prevailing attitude be towards "blacks" then? Innocent question.
     
  9. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    "White Man's Burden" with John Travolta & Harry Belefonte, 1995.
     
  10. Pacifist

    Pacifist Active Member

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    I think you're missing something. The US didn't fight Germany because "their brand of racism was unacceptable" the US fought them because they declared war on us after we declared war on Japan. The nazi atrocities were not generally known/believed/understood outside of Germany until soldiers on the ground started liberating camps.

    That said, the lives of blacks in the US were getting better both financially and educationally generation by generation. Up until single motherhood started becoming the norm. Now it's getting worse year after year.
     
  11. gtblackwell

    gtblackwell Well-Known Member Patron  

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    Guys, I am having typo flu again ! My apologies. , my post was full of them, I hope corrected. Enlarging the type helped but I have something called central serous retinopathy, aneurysms in the retina that leak fluid behind it causing an uneven surface so for a while everything is blury and wiggly. Had it for 35 years and it comes and goes so bear with me. When I draw I tell myself that that what I see as crooked is really straight !

    I also have epiretinal membrane proliferation, Fuch's dydtrophy, glaucoma and macula degeneration ! Almost funny. They love me at the Med School as a demonstration model for residences to practice on ..

    But they keep me seeing as well as can be and the fact that I am still able to draw and work is a miracle ! I am not complaining at all just an explanation as to my typo mistakes ( Not that I ever make any !!

    Cheers,

    Gaines
     
  12. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer Member

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    Fascism? Don't make me laugh!

    Roosevelt tilted towards socialism, and socialists can also be bastards. The Japanese (and also many Italian and German immigrants, though nobody ever talks about that) were interned under him, which was probably a low point in our 20th century civil rights history. But, for blacks WWII was actually a pivotal point in this country that birthed the civil rights movement and made real advances possible. White soldiers and sailors who never really had contact with blacks at home, came back with much more balance and respect.

    We started the war with a segregated military, but by the end that had broken down in real terms. After the war, it was Truman who ended segregation in the military on an official basis, yet left some loopholes that were exploited by some military commanders - housing, medical care, etc. A few years later Eisenhower expanded on Truman's executive order to create real equality in every aspect of military life, and created real consequences for discrimination. Succeeding administrations opened more and more doors from the federal level - Kennedy, LBJ, etc.

    So, no. Your premise is rather faulty.
     
  13. Carronade

    Carronade Ace Patron  

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    It's not as simple black and white - no pun intended. Practically all societies had degrees of racial or ethnic prejudice (and often still do). If the "good guys" had to be completely without flaws, there wouldn't have been anyone fighting Hitler! ;)
     
  14. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    Very this.

    Gen. Marshall fought integration in the Army because he didn't want to get ahead of the society as a whole. What other motives he had are open to discussion.
     
  15. Victor Gomez

    Victor Gomez Ace

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    Gunslinger..........let us not just look at things in Black and White..........that ignores others...........there were the code talkers, there were the Bushmasters, there were troops like Miyamura....and so many others I have forgotten to mention here. My point is is that here in the great United States we definitely are not perfect but we do have a constitution that tries to endeavor to protect each of these groups that can unite to fight a common foe in the hopes of righting our ways little by little, making progress to make things better for all of our children. The United States has never been "Job Accomplished" but it remains our hope and the hope of many around the world to make "ongoing improvement"! I am just as guilty sometimes only seeing the cup as 1/8 full in our current political climate.
     
  16. mac_bolan00

    mac_bolan00 Member

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    just to find meaning for this thread, there was this movie about AF recruits working stateside as ammunition handlers. a young thurgood marshal (future supreme court justice) even figured in the story. where can one get actual accounts of this story?
     
  17. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    Google "Port Chicago Disaster", "Port Chicago Mutiny", "Port Chicago 50"
     
  18. mac_bolan00

    mac_bolan00 Member

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    Thanks.
     
  19. Biak

    Biak Adjutant Patron  

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  20. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    Slipdigit likes this.

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