Black and White: A Visual Interpretation of Racism during the Vietnam War
Another way racial prejudices continued after segregation showed in the photograph through the expression of the black soldier shaking the hand of Lyndon B. Johnson. The soldier’s eyes are widened and mouth is slightly open which makes him appear to be shocked or surprised. His surprised expression stands out from all the other soldiers’ serious visage. The feeling of shock for the soldier may come from the respect given by President Johnson that he may not be accustom to or expect from such an influential person. In the photograph, Johnson stares directly into the soldier’s eyes and shakes the soldier’s hand which are both common forms of showing respect. The black soldier likely didn’t expect a white man like President Lyndon B. Johnson to express respect towards him because other less influential white people wouldn’t do the same which shows the continuation of racial prejudice.
Also, at the point in the line where race changes, there is clearly a larger gap between the last white soldier and the first black soldier which shows racial prejudice. This