An Idea Whose Time Had Come

May 3rd, 2014
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Few events truly define the complexity of the American experience.  Yet the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, comes very close.

At its core, it address the founding flaw in the American republic, in taking up the issue of race itself.  It incorporates the moral underpinnings  and power of religion, faith and morality in the American character.   And further, its shows the best in the system of self government, designed by our founders, to allow conflict, and compromise and the better angels of our nature to foster action that may not be politically expedient.  

In this sense, our focus on this Act, fifty years ago, is not so much nostalgia, but perhaps longing for what we once were able to do.

This is the zeitgeist that Todd Purdum captures in his new book An Idea Whose Time Has Come: Two Presidents, Two Parties, and the Battle for the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

My conversation with Todd Purdum: