Unsympathetic, ambiguous, and openly racist remarks are a hallmark of Donald Trump's public life. They may have reached their nadir after he failed to condemn white supremacy in the wake of the violence in Charlottesville, but perhaps no remark of his is more telling than his campaign pitch to African Americans: "What the hell do you have to lose?"
Quite a lot, as it turns out. In this vigorous and timely book, civil rights historian and political analyst Juan Williams issues the truth about just what African Americans have to lose, and how Trump is threatening to take it away. In Williams's lifetime, civil rights have improved, vastly and against great resistance -- including from Trump and his family. Using the 1964 Civil Rights Act as a rubric, Williams recounts the less known and forgotten stories of heroes like Bob Moses, A. Philip Randolph, and Everett Dirksen, who fought for voting rights, integration of public schools and spaces, and more.
This book is not merely a much-needed and highly visible history lesson. It signals the alarm about the Trump administration's policies and intentions, which pose a threat to civil rights without precedent in modern America.
In a polarized era, it's especially telling when moderates like Williams are prepared to stand up and shout. This book is clear-sighted, inspiring, and necessary, from an author with the experience and standing to make it heard.
Juan Williams has covered and written about American politics for four decades. He is currently a columnist for The Hill, and was a longtime writer and correspondent for The Washington Post and NPR. Most notably, Juan is currently a cohost of FoxNews Channel's roundtable debate show The Five, and makes regular appearances across the network on shows like FoxNews Sunday with Chris Wallace and Special Report with Brett Baier, where he regularly challenges the orthodoxy of the network's conservative stalwarts. He is also the author of numerous books, including Eyes on the Prize, Thurgood Marshall, Enough, Muzzled, and We The People.
"In this challenging time, when the echoes of past injustices linger just beneath the surface waiting to burst forth like a broken dam, we must understand the consequences at hand. Juan Williams takes us chapter and verse through the incredible sacrifices, struggles and progress of the civil rights movement and what is now at stake for all Americans: freedom, liberty and justice- for all."--Mitch Landrieu, former mayor of New Orleans "Like a finely-honed fact-based scalpel in the hands of a skilled surgeon, Juan Williams carefully examines the pillar achievements of African Americans in our nation since Slavery and our Civil War.... A chilling, fact-based recital of just how much African Americans are losing and could lose under President Trump."--Dr. Clarence B. Jones, former political advisor, lawyer, and speechwriter to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and adjunct professor, University of San Francisco "This book skillfully combines observations of the current state of politics and race relations with insights from the long, and sometimes forgotten, history of the civil rights movement. With decades of hard-won progress under threat, Juan Williams reminds us that knowing our past is essential if we are to understand our present, and shape our future."--Vernon Jordan, civil rights leader, attorney, and former head of the National Urban League "Juan Williams has written an important and timely book on the future of civil rights and equal justice under the law. Williams, an eyewitness to history, warns us to 'stay woke' in the era of Trump. Otherwise, we might find the moral arc of our history suddenly bending backwards."--Donna Brazile, former Interim Chair of the Democratic National Committee "A cogent response from a veteran journalist... His skillful succinctness makes his anti-Trump commentaries often devastating... [A] relevant and well-grounded book."--Kirkus Reviews "A vivid and beguiling investigation on how Donald Trump is hell-bent on dismantling a large slice of America's Civil Rights heritage. This is a wake-up call for those who want to keep Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s dream alive. Williams, who works at Fox News, is taking a brave stance in these pages. Highly recommended!"--Douglas Brinkley, professor of history at Rice University and author of Rosa Parks