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When Alabama Governor George Wallace spoke to hundreds of whites at Milwaukee's Serb Hall in 1976, he was greeted by chants of "Wallace Yes! Busing No!" which referred to Wallace's opposition of the 1971 Supreme Court decision that gave federal courts the discretion to include busing as a desegregation tool to achieve racial balance in schools. The decision made busing one of the most controversial topics in U.S. law and politics during the 1970s. Opponents of forced busing argued that forcing children many miles away from the students’ homes presented problems for them and their families, and resulted in lower involvement in after school activities and parental participation at the school.
Large numbers of middle and upper-class residents began to move away from urban areas, settling in the suburbs, which became known as “white flight.” The growth of private and parochial schools rose during this period. In the 1980s desegregated busing began to decline and because of the increased diversity of schools today, many have been excluded from the Federal requirement.
Wallace served two consecutive and two non-consecutive terms as Governor of Alabama over three decades in the 60s, 70s and 80s and declared in his 1963 inaugural address that he stood for “segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever.”