Black History and the Democrats
Black History Month was first an idea in the mind of Carter Woodson, the child of freed slaves. It was officially recognized by President Gerald Ford, a Republican, in 1976, some one hundred fourteen years after another Republican, Abraham Lincoln, issued the emancipation proclamation.
The Democrat Party has a long history of dividing the country along racial lines. In the recent past, Democrats made election-year promises to improve the African American’s life but soon forgot the promises after they received their votes. Today, African Americans and other people of color are recognizing that the Democrat’s mouths and hearts are often traveling in different directions.
In the leadup to our most recent presidential election, Democrats seized the Black Lives Matter (BLM) and Antifa demonstrations and riots as a crisis that they could use to smear the sitting president who had elevated the status of people of color.
Yvette Simpson, of the progressive political action committee, Democracy for America, in an article in June of 2020 said, “We only take action when something has happened and that action is generally temporary and changes when political wind changes and when political leadership changes.” She further stated that many of the protests are taking place in Democratic-run cities. Perhaps without knowing it, she revealed a long-hidden truth: the Democrat practice of; promise, get elected, and forget the promise.
During the riots, Democrats adopted an anti-police mantra to secure the African American vote. Following BLM’s leadership, they lined up in lockstep to defund the police and remove qualified immunity. But it was minority communities who sought more, not less police service. The impact was devastating. Officers retired or resigned in droves, recruiting was stymied, ambushes of officers reached a fever pitch, and violent crime, especially in Democrat-run cities, has broken records.
Today, as in the past, with the election behind them, Democrats are backpedaling their “defund or abolish the police” support. In other words, they are following their predictable historic pattern.
Democrats manipulating race for political gain is black history.
In 1957, Arkansas Governor Orval Faubus, a Democrat, called out the National Guard to prevent black students from attending a previously all-white high school in Little Rock. Republican President Dwight D. Eisenhower deployed federal troops to ensure the safety of the nine students. In a Faubus profile, it is noted that journalist Harry Ashmore, known for his articles on the subject, said that “Faubus used the Guard to keep blacks out of Central High School because he was frustrated by the success his political opponents were having in using segregationist rhetoric to arouse white voters.” Is this not using race for political gain?
In 1964 Joseph T. Silverman, a Democrat segregationist, was elected Mayor of Selma, Alabama, and served until he resigned in 1979, ran again, and was returned to office in 1980, holding the seat until he was defeated by Selma’s first black mayor in 2000. Six months after Silverman was first elected, marchers seeking equal voting rights were beaten on a Selma bridge as they marched to the capitol in what came to be known as “Bloody Sunday.” Major Cloud of the Alabama State Police announced that Governor George Wallace had forbidden the march, gave the marchers two minutes to turn back, then ordered the troopers to move in. Wallace was known for standing in the schoolhouse door in 1963 as a political demonstration that he would not back down to federal authorities in integrating the University of Alabama.
The images of Selma are forever embedded in our minds and in our history. Selma fueled the passage of the Voting Rights Act. Who remembers Silverman in relation to the violence? Nobody! The visual imagery of the clash of African Americans and police is what is remembered. Doing as ordered, the police, also used, became the visual representation of bigotry that was ordered by Democrat politicians.
As mayor, Silverman was accused of misusing absentee ballots in 1992, when numerous people swore in affidavits that the mayor’s office either forged their signatures or bribed them for votes. Could it be that history is repeating itself in the mail-in ballots today? Silverman was defeated when the city had approximately sixty-five percent black voters. His successor ran with a campaign slogan of “Joe Gotta Go” to unseat him.
Democrats today are still using race to foment hatred, and when it is convenient, they attack the police, the protectors of those living in the most dangerous cities. The party’s history is marked with racism. They were the party of slavery, Jim Crow, and the Ku Klux Klan, yet they claim the Republican party to be racist. Politics is the reason for their racist actions then and now. They change with the political winds, apologizing for their previous views to get votes. Democrats are quick to protect and praise one another, even if they despised those they are publicly praising. In 2010, the Senate’s president pro tempore, former Ku Klux Klan Exalted Cyclops Robert Byrd (D., W.V.), was memorialized by Presidents Barack Obama, Joe Biden, and Bill Clinton.
Project 1619, the fictional history by journalist (not historian) Nicole Hannah-Jones, is now being used to regain the black vote. As recently as 2016, President Obama said in a speech regarding Black History Month that it “shouldn’t be treated as though it is somehow separate from our collective American history.” I agree -- true Black history is American history, warts, scars, and all.
Brown vs. Board of Education and the aftermath is actual history. The Southern Manifesto document identified those who opposed the Supreme Court’s decision in this case and their commitment to segregation. The manifesto was presented by ninety-nine members of both houses of Congress, only two were Republicans, ninety-seven Democrats.
In the Civil Rights Act of 1964 vote, only sixty-one percent of House Democrats supported it, while eighty percent of Republicans supported it. In the Senate, eighty-two percent of Republicans supported it. Democrat, Al Gore Sr. was among those senators opposing the passage. Another Democrat, Senator J. William Fulbright, who served from 1943 to 1974 in both the U.S. House of Representatives and as senator for Arkansas, was among those who filibustered the act for eighty-three days. Now, because it is politically expedient, Democrats want to change the rules of the filibuster. In 1993, President Clinton awarded Fulbright the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
President Biden said of desegregating schools in 1977 that it would cause his children to “grow up in a racial jungle.” In May 2020, Biden, appearing on a radio show made the now infamous statement that if they were unsure of whether to vote for him or Trump, then, “you ain’t black!” The Democrats have manipulated race so long that they take the black vote for granted.
We are a diverse nation, we each have our own uniqueness and culture, that when added together are much better than our individual selves. Black history -- American history -- should be studied, and the failures reviewed so they are not repeated, we must learn the lesson of American, E Pluribus Unum: out of many, one.
Richard Arrington is an author and freelance writer on political matters who resides in Virginia.
Image: GPO Archive