Our Opinion: 50 years later, who is the communist sympathizer?
A look back at the furor surrounding Great Barrington’s dedication of the W.E.B. Du Bois Boyhood Home Site a half-century ago reveals some juicy ironies.
The Cold War was still raging in 1969 and Mr. Du Bois’ dalliances with communism and the Soviet Union were highly controversial. (“Events to make half-century since Du Bois site dedication,” Eagle, Oct. 17.) There was considerable local opposition, with state Sen. George Hammond of the Hampden-Berkshire District declaring a year earlier that “If a man changes his mind to communism, it discredits all that came earlier.” Civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. endorsed the Du Bois event and there were fears that violence between African-Americans and anti-Communists would erupt. Happily it did not, but local police and the county sheriff’s department were prepared for it and a National Guard unit was on alert. click here read full article