The controversial Supreme Court decision of 1954 has profoundly affected southern Jewish communities. As writer Albert Vorspan declares: "The segregation crisis has shaken Southern Jews more severely than any national event since the Civil War." Southern bigots have accused Jews of supporting integration, and extremists have even bombed synagogues in Mississippi, Tennessee, Florida, Georgia, and Alabama.
The following selections show that there are southern Jews who protest segregation, but fear of reprisal has silenced many of them. In contrast, northern and western Jews have usually been in the vanguard of battles for civil rights. On occasion individual southern Jews, laymen and rabbis alike, have spoken out boldly on the injustices of segregation, but they constitute a small minority of southern Jewry.
The articles in this section are all written by keen observers of human relations. Joshua A. Fishman, who worked in Alabama, Murray Friedman, who has studied Jewish communities in Virginia, and civil rights lawyer Marvin Braiterman, who lived for a short time in Mis