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Looking Back On JFK’s Attitudes Around The March On Washington

President John F. Kennedy meets with organizers of "The March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom” in the Oval Office on August 28, 1963. (Cecil Stoughton/John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum)

President John F. Kennedy meets with organizers of “The March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom” in the Oval Office on August 28, 1963. (Cecil Stoughton/John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum)

This week, the nation marked the 50th anniversary of the historic March on Washington. We’ve talked a lot about Martin Luther King’s “I have a Dream” speech, and about the organization and effort that went into the largest civil rights rally in American history.

But there’s an interesting story to be told about what happened in the immediate aftermath of the March. It’s the story of how the tension between politics and justice was played out in the most powerful person in the country. It’s the story of President John F. Kennedy, and his complicated legacy on civil rights.

Guest

Robert Dallek, one of the nation’s pre-eminent historians and author of a number of books including “An Unfinished Life: John F. Kennedy, 1917 – 1963.” His latest book is “Camelot’s Court: Inside the Kennedy White House.” It is set to be published in October.

More

John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum The president now prepares to take a bold stand (complete with video, photos, recordings and scanned documents).

Radio Boston Robert Dallek about the significance of Kennedy’s “new frontier,” both then and now.


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