What did many white southerners believe would happen if black defendants accused of raping white women were not found guilty? 

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White southerners at the time of the Jim Crow laws were deeply afraid of miscegenation, or the mixing of the races. They believed that if black men were around white women, they would rape white women (this was, of course, false). In addition, they also feared that contact between white women and black men would lead to the mixing of races, which some southerners believed would...

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