WASHINGTON – Comparing President Bush to the Birmingham, Ala., police commissioner whose resistance to the civil rights movement became synonymous with Southern racism, Rep. Charles Rangel said yesterday of the president: "George Bush is our Bull Connor."
Mr. Rangel’s metaphoric linkage of Mr. Bush to the late Theophilus "Bull" Connor – who in 1963 turned fire hoses and attack dogs on blacks, including Martin Luther King Jr., demonstrating in favor of equal rights – met with wild applause and cheering at a Congressional Black Caucus town hall meeting, part of the organization’s 35th Annual Legislative Conference.
Yesterday’s town hall meeting was a highlight of the four-day conference, which today will feature an anti-Iraq-war forum with a roving, protesting anti-war mother, Cindy Sheehan; a prominent New York black activist, the Reverend Al Sharpton, and a former president of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, Kweisi Mfume. The conference culminates in a gala tomorrow evening.
Now doesn’t that sound like a conference you’d want to attend?
Mr. Rangel should be ashamed of himself. It’s stupid statements like that which do nothing to bring the black and white community respectively closer together. Thank you, Mr. Rangel, for doing your part to keep America divided.
WASHINGTON, Sept. 23 /U.S. Newswire/ — Members of the black leadership network Project 21 are demanding that the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) and Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) join with them in condemning remarks made by CBC member Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) in which he called President George W. Bush "our Bull Conner," referring to the 1960s segregationist icon.
"Charles Rangel’s comments are morally vacant and beneath the pale, but obviously not out of character for him and his supporters," said Project 21 member Mychal Massie. "How many blacks today suffer from beatings, fire hoses or have dogs set on them for trying to seek a seat at a lunch counter or go to school? How many of us today are living under inflexible, legislated segregation?"
Massie adds: "Rangel’s comments may play well with those who embrace ignorance, but it will not resonate with Americans who eschew racial demagoguery. We demand that the CBC and Senator Clinton join with this overwhelming majority of their fellow citizens in banishing hate speech such as this to the trash heap of history."