Daniel P. Moynihan’s confidential “Benign Neglect” memo to president Richard Nixon is made public.
1970 (Feb 28)
A confidential memorandum to the president from Daniel P. Moynihan, domestic advisor to president Richard Nixon, was made public. The memo proposed that "the time may have come when the issue of race could benefit from a period of benign neglect." Moynihan, a liberal Democrat, explained later that he had meant that Blacks could fare better if extremists on both sides of the political spectrum would lower their voices. He asserted that his memorandum had been written with a twofold purpose: to bring the president up to date on the progress of Blacks in the last decade, and to suggest ways in which these gains could be consolidated in the future.