How the Failure of Reconstruction Destroyed Progress in America
What If Reconstruction Hadn’t Failed?
There is little reason to doubt that if the United States had, during the late 19th century, started the process of rewriting the script on race relations, instead of delaying it to the 1950s and 1960s, many problems that have their origins in the country’s troubled racial history might be closer to resolution. As Justice Thurgood Marshall noted in 1978 in the affirmative action case, The Regents of University of California v. Bakke, America has been dealing with the tragedy of Reconstruction’s failure and its aftermath for decades now. It appears that the country will likely be doing so for the foreseeable future.