Taxes: The Martinsville Seven

"MILLIONS FIGHT TO SAVE INNOCENT NEGROES," screamed the Daily Worker. "Negroes lynched, Nazis freed, where's our democracy?" chanted a crowd outside Manhattan's city hall. Pickets, led by Author Howard Fast, turned up in the snow before the White House, carrying black-bordered signs: "Seven Negroes framed and condemned by all-white jury." The well-greased Communist apparatus was making propaganda hay out of the Martinsville Seven—with suitable adjustments in the facts.

The Martinsville Seven were seven Negroes who had confessed to raping the wife of a Martinsville, Va. store manager just two years ago. They had been duly tried and convicted, their cases had twice...