Every mass movement in America, the philosopher Eric Hoffer once wrote, becomes a racket in the end.
And he hadn’t even witnessed the full course of the civil rights movement. If the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington is a time for taking stock, the score is clear. The Dream was a glorious triumph, changing America forever and making it more just. The contemporary civil rights movement, partly as a consequence, is an intellectually exhausted disgrace.