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Truman's Integration Of The Armed Forces

James C. Cassatt

Looking back, desegregating the military seems like the obvious thing to do, but in the 1940s and 50s, it wasn't so clear for Harry Truman.

In the first part of Wednesday's Up to Date, we talk with Rawn James, Jr., author of The Double V: How Wars, Protest, and Harry Truman Desegregated America’s Military about why Truman made it happen when Roosevelt had refused. We also look back at the history of African-American service in the armed forces.

A graduate of Yale University and Duke University School of Law, Rawn James, Jr., has practiced law for a decade in Washington, D.C., where he lives with his wife and their children. He is the author of Root and Branch: Charles Hamilton Houston, Thurgood Marshall, and the Struggle to End Segregation. The Double V is his second book.  He works in D.C. as a civilian lawyer for the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps.


When I host Up To Date each morning at 9, my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. Reach me at steve@kcur.org or on Twitter @stevekraske.