**Posted by Phineas
I’ve written before about the dirty history of the Democratic Party when it comes to race and civil rights (1), a history that’s largely been swept under the rug as the Party pretends to have always been a virtuous fighter for civil rights and the welcoming home for African-American voters.
The irony is so thick, you can cut it with a knife:
Like I said, red meat. One can quibble (2), but the basic facts are right; if we’re to be honest about our history and if American Blacks are ever to free themselves from being played for suckers into giving their votes en bloc to just one party –a party that is not serving their interests– then these facts need to be much more widely known.
PS: I haven’t read Kebreau’s book, Stolen History, so I can’t recommend or comment on it. However I do highly recommend Bruce Bartlett’s “Wrong on Race: the Democratic Party’s Buried Past.” Copiously footnoted and deeply researched in both primary sources and academic journals, it should be the standard one-volume reference on the topic. I reviewed it in 2008.
(1) My apologies to proud average-American Democrats reading this, but it’s the truth and it’s been hidden from you, too.
(2) One can argue that the large blocs in Congress opposing civil rights legislation were “less Democrat” than they were Southern, the legacy of both the region’s history with slavery and the place where Jim Crow originated and was most strongly in force. (Though Jim Crow was not limited to the South, to be sure.) This line of argument also would point out that they were Democratic politicians because of the Civil War, in which a Republican administration first crushed the Confederacy and then imposed the hated Reconstruction. And that would be a fair observation. BUT… it is also fair to note that Northern and Western Democrats continually allied with racist Southern Democrats to win national elections and get legislation passed, each giving the other what it wanted. Which means there is no way around it: the Democratic Party as a whole owns that dirty history.
(Crossposted at Public Secrets)