A Time to Lose by Paul E. Wilson
Representing Kansas in Brown v. Board of Education

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Synopsis

This thoughtful and engaging memoir opens up a previously hidden side to what many consider the most important Supreme Court decision of the twentieth century. With quiet candor Paul Wilson reflects upon his role as the Kansas assistant attorney general assigned "to defend the indefensible"-the policy of "separate but equal" that was overturned on May 17, 1954, by Linda Brown's precedent-shattering suit. The Brown decision ended legally sanctioned racial segregation in our nation's public schools, expanded the constitutional concepts of equal protection and due process of law, and in many ways launched the modern civil rights movement. Since that time, it has been cited by appellate courts in thousands of federal and state cases, analyzed in thousands of books and articles, and remains a cornerstone of law school education. Wilson reminds us that Brown was not one case but four-including similar cases in South Carolina, Virginia, and Delaware-and that it was only a quirk of fate that brought this young lawyer to center stage at the Supreme Court. But the Kansas case and his own role, he argues, were different from the others in significant ways. His recollections reveal why. Recalling many events known only to Brown insiders, Wilson re-creates the world of 1950s Kansas, places the case in the context of those times and politics, provides important new information about the state's ambivalent defense, and then steps back to suggest some fundamental lessons about his experience, the evolution of race relations, and the lawyer's role in the judicial resolution of social conflict. Throughout these reflections Wilson's voice shines through with sincerity, warmth, and genuine humility. Far from a self-serving apology by one of history's losers, his memoir reminds us once again that there are good people on every side of the issues that divide us and that truth and meaning are not the special preserve of history's winners.
 

About Paul E. Wilson

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Romance author Jayne Ann Krentz was born in Borrego Springs, California on March 28, 1948. She received a B.A. in history from the University of California at Santa Cruz and a Masters degree in library science from San Jose State University. Before becoming a full-time author, she worked as a librarian. Her novels include: Truth or Dare, All Night Long, and Copper Beach. She has written under seven different names: Jayne Bentley, Amanda Glass, Stephanie James, Jayne Taylor, Jayne Castle, Amanda Quick and Jayne Ann Krentz. Her first book, Gentle Pirate, was published in 1980 under the name Jayne Castle. She currently uses only three personas to represent her three specialties. She uses the name Jayne Ann Krentz for her contemporary pieces, Amanda Quick for her historical fiction pieces, and Jayne Castle for her futuristic pieces. She has received numerous awards for her work including the 1995 Romantic Times Reviewer's Choice Award for Trust Me, the 2004 Romantic Times Reviewer's Choice Award for Falling Awake, the Romantic Times Career Achievement Award, the Romantic Times Jane Austen Award, and the Susan Koppelman Award for Feminist Studies for Dangerous Men and Adventurous Women: Romance Writers on the Appeal of the Romance.
 
Published March 1, 1995 by University Press Of Kansas. 248 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, Education & Reference, Law & Philosophy. Non-fiction

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But Wilson is characteristically clueless: ``I was satisfied that I had looked and talked and behaved like a lawyer.'' Repetitive, simplistic, and inadvertently humorous, this book will not win sympathy for its legalistic defense of segregation.

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Publishers Weekly

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Indeed, unlike defense attorneys in companion cases in South Carolina and Virginia, Wilson welcomed friend of the court briefs from organizations like the ACLU, the CIO and the American Federation of Teachers, ``none [of which] were friends of Kansas and the Topeka Board of Education.'' Wilson al...

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