Thoughtful Southerners of a conservative and traditional bent have known since the 1980s that the old Conservative Movement which began back in the 1950s with the publication of Russell Kirk’s The Conservative Mind, and then with the inauguration of William F. Buckley’s National Review, has no room for them, no room for their writers (unless those authors pass a rigorous test as to their opposition to “racism” and “sexism”).
At one time significant Southern eminences like Mel Bradford, Andrew Lytle, and others were welcomed to the pages of NR, to Kirk’s Modern Age and to other conservative journals, but those venues saw their doors close to Southern traditionalists in the later 1980s and early 1990s. Indeed, that process had begun years before with the migration of various non-Communist Leftists and Trotskyites into the Movement, with those interlopers—the Neoconservatives—assuming authoritative power in the establishment Conservative Movement. At first welcomed, the newcomers soon gained near complete control…of magazines, foundations, think tanks, and more. [There are two excellent articles in the February 2020 issue of Chronicles magazine, by Scott Trask and Paul Gottfried, exploring the disgraceful treatment of Bradford by the Neoconservatives.]
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