On Sunday (29 February) about three thousand anti-school busing demonstrators staged a rally and march in south Boston, Massachusetts, United States.
On Sunday (29 February) about three thousand anti-school busing demonstrators staged a rally and march in south Boston, Massachusetts, United States. It came just two days before the Massachusetts state primary for this year's Presidential election.
About 1,500 police bivouacked in a State Department building as a precaution against the possibility of violence, but the demonstration was peaceful.
School busing - the court-ordered method of maintaining racial balance in Boston's public schools - is a highly emotional issue that has enmeshed the city in a civil rights struggle.
The candidates for the Democratic nomination for the Presidential election who are appealing to Boston's voters are divided on the subject. Governor George Wallace of Alabama is frankly conservative in his views and supports the anti-busing campaign. Jimmy Carter, a former Governor of the State of Georgia, avoids supporting one side or the other, whilst the liberal-orientated Senator Birch Bayh is in favour of busing. Senator Henry Jackson of Washington is another anti-busing candidate.
Sunday's demonstration was concentrated on South Boston High School - the focal point for anti-busing activities for some time. Last December the school - situated in an Irish Catholic area - was taken over by a federal judge, who removed the headmaster and the football coach because desegregation had not taken place peacefully.