Fake news about 'crisis actors' is old news, see Little Rock 1957 | Arkansas Blog

Monday, February 26, 2018

Fake news about 'crisis actors' is old news, see Little Rock 1957

Posted By on Mon, Feb 26, 2018 at 9:28 AM

When Sen. Alan Clark (R-Lonsdale) joined in the fake Facebook meme about use of "actors" to portray Florida high school students, he was following in a long tradition of baloney, often tinged with bigotry.

From the Washington Post:

Sixty-one years before teens at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., would survive a mass shooting only to be labeled “crisis actors,” the nine African American teens who braved racist crowds to enroll in Little Rock Central High School in Arkansas were also accused of being impostors.

False rumors that the Little Rock Nine were paid protesters even forced the NAACP to issue a statement condemning the stories as “pure propaganda.” The students were not, in fact, “imported” from the North, said the NAACP’s Clarence A. Laws, but rather the children of local residents, including veterans.
Kevin Kruse, a Princeton history professor, first pointed out the parallel between Florida and efforts to detract from the courage of the Little Rock Nine. His Tweet went viral.

But the practice of dismissing witnesses to major historical events as mere paid actors goes back much further than the Little Rock Nine.

“It’s a theme that crops up throughout civil rights history,” said Kruse. “Back then, it was an assumption that African Americans in the South couldn’t possibly be upset. They must have been stirred up from the outside, either paid to do this or inspired to do this by propaganda. They couldn’t have come up with this on their own.

The slur was used when former slaves testified before Congress after the Civil War. It was used when blacks testified against the Ku Klux Klan. The attempt at misdirection was used repeatedly during the civil rights years of the 1960s, including a cry of hoax about the disappearance of three civil rights workers eventually found slain.

Dismissal of the civil rights people is analogous to the cries of fakery about Parkland, Fla.

“It’s the same idea,” [historian Heather] Richardson said. “That anybody who doesn’t agree with establishment politics must have no agency, be corrupt or not understand what they are doing.”

Alan Clark and other NRA defenders won't accept that many people, even in Arkansas, see things differently. They prefer to believe they have no agency. November might disprove that to some of them.


Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,


Sign up for the Daily Update email
Favorite

Comments (3)

Showing 1-3 of 3

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-3 of 3

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • Trump immigration protest at LR: Quick and fierce

    It was not even 24 hours ago that Sophia Said, director of the Interfaith Center; City Director Kathy Webb and others decided to organize a protest today of Donald Trump's executive order that has left people from Muslim countries languishing in airports or unable to come to the US at all — people with visas, green cards,a  post-doc graduate student en route to Harvard, Google employees abroad, families. I got the message today before noon; others didn't find out until it was going on. But however folks found out, they turned out in huge numbers, more than thousand men, women and children, on the grounds of the state Capitol to listen to speakers from all faiths and many countries.
    • Jan 29, 2017
  • The LR chamber does the public's business. Is it accountable? Blue Hog on the case.

    Matt Campbell, lawyer and Blue Hog Report blogger, has sent a Freedom of Information Act request to Jay Chessir, director of the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce, and Mayor Mark Stodola related to the publicity stunt yesterday  built around withdrawing from the mayor's rash pronouncement that the city would seek an Amazon HQ2 project even though the city  didn't meet the company's criteria.
    • Oct 20, 2017
  • Your daily dose of Jason Rapert

    Sen. Jason Rapert really, really didn't like it when a KATV reporter asked him about the hypocrisy of his political arguments.
    • Feb 4, 2017

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments

Slideshows

 

© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation