Liberal Democracy

Liberal Democracy
The Free State

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

EFAN 2011: Richard Nixon's 1968 GOP Presidential Acceptance Speech: The Silent Majority

The 1960s was actually a pretty good time for America even though we were very divided as a country over Vietnam, civil rights and the Great Society. The Civil Rights Act was passed in 1964 which outlawed racial discrimination under law in the United States. The Voting Rights Act was passed in 1965. Which meant no longer would be people be denied their right to vote based on their race. The Fair Housing Law was passed in 1968. Which meant no longer would people be allowed to deny other people housing based on race. Medicare was passed in 1965, which meant seniors would always have guaranteed health insurance in America.

The economy boomed in that decade. The Federal Government was actually able to balanced its budget during this decade. But this was also one of the most turbulent and divisive decades we've ever had in America. Four political leaders were assassinated in this decade. President Kennedy, Malcolm X, Rev. Dr. Martin L. King and of course Senator Robert Kennedy in 1968. King and Kennedy in 68, within two months, April and June. Hundreds of thousands of Americans dying or injured in the Vietnam War, the South moving from solidly Democratic to solidly Republican in 1968.

Richard Nixon understood the mood of America about as well as any politician we've ever produced. And understood where the country was and where they were going and how he could fit in that into his politics. As far as what he believed and what he wanted to accomplish. And he could make that work politically for him and the Republican Party. This whole speech is a perfect example of that, where he says, ;that a country thats run by the rule of law, has lawlessness throughout the country.' He's talking about the riots in our big cities like Detroit, Chicago, Los Angeles and others.

'When the a country with the greatest military in the world gets bogged down in a civil war in a third world country.' He's talking about the Vietnam War. 'When these things happen its time for a change in leadership in the greatest country in the world.' Meaning the United States. Dick Nixon was laying out where the country was, all the divisiveness that the country was going through. And what wasn't working in the country and saying its time for a change in leadership in America. And saying he's the one meaning who will bring that new leadership that will move America forward.