Black Republicans and the specter of tokenism

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15 Responses

  1. Bob Cheeks says:

    Yes, yes those evil Republicans who stood against the Civil Rights Act of 1964: Sen. Fulbright, Bubba’s mentor, Sen. Algore Sr., Algore jr’s daddy, Sen. Byrd of W.Va., the Grand Keegle or Keagle or Koogle.
    That’s why MLK was a Democrat!
    And, Jamelle, I do hope you’re trying your best to reform the commie-Dems!Report

  2. Rj says:

    Cheeks: It’s almost like the partisan realignment never happened! As soon as the Republican record on race comes up, we hear over and over again how southern Democrats opposed civil rights legislation as if mass defections among the segregationist set, from Wallace to Thurmond and beyond, was just some mass hallucination on the part of the liberal media.

    Can we do a little better with the boilerplate conservative response? Perhaps you can call Jamelle an elitist, an Obamabot in thrall to “The One,” maybe an America-hater or a socialist? A plant from ACORN to make you look bad? There are only so many options…Report

    • Bob Cheeks in reply to Rj says:

      RJ, thanks for that. I can’t help myself.I’m having fun today bouncing around two or three (I have dial-up) sites lighting little fires.
      As far as boilerplate, well whatever works, and besides my history on the CRA is right on…is that what hurts?
      Obamabot…I do like that!Report

      • Rj in reply to Bob Cheeks says:

        It’s right, but it isn’t relevant. Those people were driven out of the party or voted out of office. Besides, where do the vast majority of Confederate symps, people who talk about “white culture” and “those people” hang their political hats?Report

  3. Dan Miller says:

    Some interesting accompaniment to this piece in the various responses at (Conor Friedsdorf’s new project–apologize for any misspelling).Report

  4. Katherine says:

    Cheeks, stop being a troll. It’s true that the Republican Party courted and gained the support of racist white southerners in the aftermath of the civil rights legislation. It’s also true that the current Republican Party contains a significant number of race-baiters and racists: remember the supposed “whitey tape”? The Ashley Todd thing? The birthers (come on, no other American president was accused of not being a citizen)? The stuffed monkeys? A Republican Party office putting out “Obama bucks” with watermelon and fried chicken on them? The Republican congressman who called Obama “uppity”?

    (and not just a few random kooks, I mean people actually in elected office). One of the southern Congressmen called Obama “uppity”, which is pretty blatant as racism goes. If you want more examples, and there are a lot, check out Ta-Nehisi Coates’ blog at the Atlantic, especially the posts from during September/October 2008. Or maybe just read Jamelle’s links.

    Here’s one quote from TNC that I think is particularly enlightening:

    The saddest thing about many Republicans isn’t just that they disagree with liberals on race–it’s they are largely ignorant on race. When the McCain campaign cast the spell of diabolical jingoism, they have no idea of the forces they are toying with. We remember Martin Luther King’s murder as a sad and tragic event. Less remembered is the fact that ground-work for King’s murder was seeded, not simply by rank white supremacy, but by people who slandered King as a communist.

    This was not some notion bandied about by conspiracy theorist, but an accusation proffered by men who were the pillars of the modern Republican Party:

    ‘As late as 1964, Falwell was attacking the 1964 Civil Rights Act as “civil wrongs” legislation. He questioned “the sincerity and intentions of some civil rights leaders such as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., James Farmer, and others, who are known to have left-wing associations.” Falwell charged, “It is very obvious that the Communists, as they do in all parts of the world, are taking advantage of a tense situation in our land, and are exploiting every incident to bring about violence and bloodshed.” ‘

    Falwell was not alone. These men didn’t kill Martin Luther King, but they contributed to an atmosphere of nationalism, white supremacy and cheap unreflective patriotism that ultimately got a lot of people killed. Confronted with Aparthied South Africa, men like Helms and Falwell used the same “communist” defense. While Mandella wasted away in prison, they dismissed the whole thing as a communist plot.

    Seeing what I have of the GOP, it amazes me that it has any black members at all.Report

  5. Bob Cheeks says:

    K, dudette, please!
    The commie-Dems were the party of racism, the Klan, and have manipulated Blacks for over one hundred years. I do understand that Blacks may not want to be members of the GOP but that’s no excuse for continuing to be abused by the commie-Dems!Report

    • Cascadian in reply to Bob Cheeks says:

      Today, the GOP is little more than the South and the christians. Too bad the Dems can’t go back to their roots as the original State’s Rights proponents without the help of the South.Report

      • dexter in reply to Cascadian says:

        I wish people would not call the fundamentalist christians. They do not follow Jesus. They are dogmatic followers of the vilest of the old testament prophets who pick which part of the old testament to follow.Report