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James Baldwin debates William F. Buckley, Jr., 1965

James Baldwin is still pointed used as an example in efforts  to accuse the current US of subjugation of Black Americans and other minority groups. This happened to me just last  week on Twitter – for some reason,  in support of elective abortion on demand.

So, I’ve done some research.


This debate took place at Cambridge University in the UK, in 1965. In the US, the March on Selma, and the arrest of Martin Luther King, has just occurred. Dr. King was still imprisoned. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was slowly taking effect.

In contrast to  Mr. Baldwin’s dismissive comments, a Black man was elected President of the US in 2008. We’ve not eliminated prejudice, but our progress against discrimination has more closely mirrored the predictions of Robert Kennedy than those of Mr. Baldwin. 


No, I don’t believe that the American dream has been at the expense of the American Negro and I don’t believe that race discrimination in 2021 can  be  compared to  Mr. Baldwin’s (or Martin Luther King’s) 1965.

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