The Evolution Of Jim Crow Laws In Twentieth Century Virginia By Charles Wynes

799 Words 4 Pages
In a 1967 publication entitled “The Evolution of Jim Crow Laws in Twentieth Century Virginia,” author Charles E. Wynes attempts to discuss the gradual transformation of the national Jim Crow laws and their implication on all Virginians. Wynes analyzes several court cases in order to exemplify how the Jim Crow laws evolved in Virginia from the post-Civil war era until the Civil Rights movement in 1964. Wynes also discusses the many attempts to have these laws changed in Virginia, often stating that politicians pushing their own personal rather than an outcry from the masses implemented these laws. Though the auther attempts to discuss the Jim Crow laws as a whole, he discribes the issues surrounding the public transit systems in Virginia in …show more content…
417). The way in which Wynes presents this argument leaves the reader believing that the Jim Crow Laws did not represent the beliefs of Virginians as a whole (p. 417.). Though this may be true, this evidence is lacking in his argument. He certainly presents evidences that lawmakers and politicians supported segregation legislation, but there is not enough data presented here to make the conclusion that these laws didn’t represent the people of Virginia as a whole. He does state that many people were afraid to speak out for fear of being called a “Negro Lover” (p. 420), but never mentions who might actually make that accusation. If these laws didn’t represent the population as a whole, then why would people fear begin associated with Negroes? This could partly be because Wynes fails to state the regions in which he gathered his information, which has the ability to contradict the argument that the population as a whole did not support Jim Crow laws. If Wynes only looked at specific progressive areas, his data is …show more content…
Wynes mentions Richmond often in this article (p. 424), so if the Richmond areas were where most of his data was gathered, it would not accurately represent the state as a whole. Areas like Roanoke, Lexington, Lynchburg and Blacksburg may have offered different data, data that perhaps supported the Jim Crow Laws of that era. There may have been no visible “public outcry” for the public transit segregation laws in the areas in which he investigated, however he may have found several issues of racial tension rising in the southern parts of Virginia. Of course there is the argument that we naturally segregate ourselves. Wynes states that Negroes generally “stayed together” in public assemblies so the need for the laws were unprecedented (p.

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