Segregated Florida

An up-and-coming magician named James Randi comes face to face with segregated Florida in the early 1960s. Also, hear about Randi’s travels over the past month.

Also, here is the link to the Randi portrait taken by internationally beloved technology pundit Andy Ihnatko and mentioned at the beginning of the podcast.

2 Responses to “Segregated Florida”

  1. Johan Strandberg says:

    Thank you for this bone chilling tale. Having grown up in Sweden, I remember my own first encounters with the remnants of segregation in North Carolina in 1977.

    I was only 19 back then, very naive and culturally completely displaced, but even then, 12 years after the Voting Rights Act, something was so very wrong in the way people treated each other. Luckily I made some friends of an enlightened persuasion who were at least able to give me some of the history so I could begin to understand.

    These days I live in California and my 8 year old son sees no difference between his friends based on skin color. This warms my heart to no end.

    Still, I am a software engineer here in Silicon Valley and there is an almost complete absence of African Americans software engineers. I have no idea of why this is, but the imbalance is huge! In 30+ years as a software engineer — most of in the cultural meltingpot of Silicon Valley — I have worked with people from 30+ countries, but only a handful of African Americans. I can’t think of a single _good_ explanation of why this is so. The _bad_ explanation is most likely that the echoes of segregation is still ringing through the educational system some 54 years after Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka.

    So, we still have a long way to go.

  2. Frank says:

    A great story, wonderfully told by James Randi. Good to know that his free thinking extends to humanism and practical real-world action against racism. Mr Randi, I applaud your bravery.

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