Quick History Lesson

Facebook again. Somebody posted this on their Facebook feed. It’s supposed to be a history lesson. In fact, its title is “Quick History Lesson.” It is quick. Here’s what it says:

13 th Amendment: Abolished Slavery
100% Republican Support
23% Democrat Support
14th Amendment:
Gave Citizenship to Freed Slaves
94% Republican Support
0% Democrat Support
15th Amendment: Right to Vote for All
100% Republican Support
0% Democrat Support
0% Republican Support
86% Democrat Support

The name of this blog is Skeptical Analysis, so let’s do some analysis.

1. The statements regarding the 13th Amendment are correct.

On January 31, 1865, the House called another vote on the amendment, with neither side being certain of the outcome. Every Republican supported the measure, as well as 16 Democrats, almost all of them lame ducks. The amendment finally passed by a vote of 119 to 56, narrowly reaching the required two-thirds majority.

2. The statements regarding the 14th Amendment are essentially correct.

Over 70 proposals for an amendment were drafted. In late 1865, the Joint Committee on Reconstruction proposed an amendment stating that any citizens barred from voting on the basis of race by a state would not be counted for purposes of representation of that state. This amendment passed the House, but was blocked in the Senate by a coalition of Radical Republicans led by Charles Sumner, who believed the proposal a “compromise with wrong”, and Democrats opposed to black rights. Consideration then turned to a proposed amendment by Representative John A. Bingham of Ohio, which would enable Congress to safeguard “equal protection of life, liberty, and property” of all citizens; this proposal failed to pass the House. In April 1866, the Joint Committee forwarded a third proposal to Congress, a carefully negotiated compromise that combined elements of the first and second proposals as well as addressing the issues of Confederate debt and voting by ex-Confederates. The wording was further modified by several close votes in the House and Senate. This compromise version passed both houses in a largely party-line vote, with Republicans supporting and Democrats opposed.

3. The statements regarding the 15th Amendment are essentially correct.

The vote in the House was 144 to 44, with 35 not voting. The House vote was almost entirely along party lines, with no Democrats supporting the bill and only 3 Republicans voting against it. The final vote in the Senate was 39 to 13, with 14 not voting. Some Radicals, such as Massachusetts Senator Charles Sumner, abstained from voting because the amendment did not prohibit literacy tests and poll taxes.

4. The statements regarding Obamacare (the Affordable Care Act) are essentially correct. No references will be cited.

What the posted meme wants to say is that in the cases of the three constitutional amendments granting freedom to slaves plus other protections for civil liberties, the Republican Party supported these laudable measures and the Democratic Party opposed them. In the case of the ACC, a law enacted to assure affordable health insurance to all legal residents of the United States, the Republican Party unanimously opposed the measure, while the Democratic Party largely supported it. That’s what it says.

There’s something else said here that was supposed to remain hidden. A bit of analysis reveals the trick is in the language. In the instance of the three constitutional amendments, the language uses party names, but does not identify the people involved. I will make a slight change in language without changing any of the facts:

  1. Liberals supported abolition of slavery. Conservatives opposed abolition of slavery.
  2. Liberals supported giving citizenship to freed slaves. Conservatives opposed giving citizenship to freed slaves.
  3. Liberals supported the right to vote for all. Conservatives opposed the right to vote for all.
  4. Liberals supported making affordable health insurance available to all. Conservatives opposed making affordable health insurance available to all.

What has largely changed since the passage of the 13th, 14th and 15th amendments to the constitution is the character of the political parties. When those amendments were passed the Republican Party, whose first president was Abraham Lincoln, was a progressive movement, while the Democratic party represented the entrenched, conservative, element of our society. Since the time of President Franklin D. Roosevelt the Democratic Party has come to represent the progressive and liberal segment, and conservatives, many of them former members of the Democratic Party, have fled to the Republican Party. The roles in the past 150 years have reversed.

As mentioned, I obtained the “Quick History Lesson” meme from a Facebook posting. What makes this all so ironic is that it was posted by a person espousing conservative (Republican) ideals. I have no idea what thinking went into the Facebook posting. Was the poster not fully aware of the actual history and its implications? Did the person deliberately set out to deceive? What audience would gladly accept the message that was supposed to be conveyed and not appreciate the underlying facts? We may never know.

A few days back I posted on another meme with a similar thought.

This was originally posted by the same person who posted the first one, and my response was much the same:

The story line is accurate as far as it goes. Historically in the 1850s the major political party in the United States was the Democratic Party, founded just a few years previous by Andrew Jackson, no friend of racial equality, but he got his picture on the $20 bill. The Republican Party was founded in 1854 by people seeking to abolish slavery. The Democratic Party at the time and for the next 100 years opposed the abolition of slavery in the beginning and equal rights for former slaves and descendants of slaves following that. The Democratic Party’s base during the first half of the 20th century was the American Deep South—the region of the former Confederacy.

That was a “Short History Lesson.” Here is a not-so-short history lesson:

The 19th Amendment gave women the right to vote. It would appear this measure had considerable liberal support and not much in the way of conservative support:

The Nineteenth Amendment’s text was drafted by Susan B. Anthony with the assistance of Elizabeth Cady Stanton. The proposed amendment was first introduced in the Senate, colloquially as the “Anthony Amendment”, by Republican Senator Aaron A. Sargent of California. Sargent, who had met and befriended Anthony on a train ride in 1872, was a dedicated women’s suffrage advocate. He had frequently attempted to insert women’s suffrage provisions into unrelated bills, but did not formally introduce a constitutional amendment until January 1878. Stanton and other women testified before the Senate in support of the amendment. The proposal sat in a committee until it was considered by the full Senate and rejected in a 16 to 34 vote in 1887.

A three-decade period known as “the doldrums” followed, during which the amendment was not considered by Congress and the women’s suffrage movement achieved few victories. During this period, the suffragists pressed for the right to vote in the laws of individual states and territories while retaining the goal of federal recognition. A flurry of activity began in 1910 and 1911 with surprise successes in Washington and California. Over the next few years, most western states passed legislation or voter referenda enacting full or partial suffrage for women. These successes were linked to the 1912 election, which saw the rise of the Progressive and Socialist parties, as well as the election of Democratic President Woodrow Wilson. Not until 1914 was the constitutional amendment again considered by the Senate, where it was again rejected.

On January 12, 1915, a proposal to amend the Constitution to provide for women’s suffrage was brought before the House of Representatives, but was defeated by a vote of 204 to 174. Another proposal was brought before the House on January 10, 1918. During the previous evening, President Wilson made a strong and widely published appeal to the House to pass the amendment. It was passed by the required two-thirds of the House, with only one vote to spare. The vote was then carried into the Senate. Wilson again made an appeal, but on September 30, 1918, the proposal fell two votes short of passage. On February 10, 1919, it was again voted upon and failed by only one vote.

Not mentioned in the foregoing is the support for women’s suffrage by William Jennings Bryan, three-time Democratic Party candidate for president. Wilson and Bryan were noted “progressives,” and their support for liberal causes represented a break from the traditional conservative Democratic Party base at the time.

Also, it would appear the Voting Rights Act of 1965 had considerable liberal support and not much conservative support.

On April 22, the full Senate started debating the bill. [Senator Everett] Dirksen [of Illinois] spoke first on behalf of the bill, concluding by saying that “legislation is needed if the unequivocal mandate of the 15th Amendment … is to be enforced and made effective, and if the Declaration of Independence is to be made truly meaningful.” Senator Strom Thurmond (R-SC) retorted that the bill would lead to “tyranny and despotism”, while Senator Sam Ervin (D-NC) argued that the bill was unconstitutional because it deprived states of their right under Article 1, Section III of the Constitution to establish voting qualifications, and because the bill targeted only jurisdictions that used literacy tests. On May 6, Ervin offered an amendment to abolish the coverage formula’s automatic trigger and instead allow federal judges to appoint examiners. This amendment overwhelmingly failed, with 45 Democrats and 22 Republicans voting against it. After lengthy debate, Ted Kennedy’s amendment to prohibit poll taxes also failed 49-45. However, Dirksen and Mansfield agreed to include a provision authorizing the Attorney General to bring lawsuits against any jurisdiction, covered or non-covered, to enjoin the enforcement of poll taxes that imposed “unreasonable financial hardship” or had “the purpose or effect of denying the right to vote on account of race or color.” and a separate provision declaring that the poll taxes was being used in some jurisdictions to unconstitutionally discriminate. An amendment offered by Senator Robert Kennedy (D-NY) to grant the right to vote illiterate citizens who had achieved at least an 8th grade education in a non-English-speaking school also passed by 48-19. Southern legislators then offered a series of amendments to weaken the bill, all of which failed.

Some elaboration will be helpful:

Strom Thurmond is one of those Democrats who deserted the Party when it started becoming too liberal in 1964.

James Strom Thurmond (December 5, 1902 – June 26, 2003) was an American politician who served for 48 years as a United States Senator. He ran for president in 1948 as the States Rights Democratic Party (Dixiecrat) candidate, receiving 2.4% of the popular vote and 39 electoral votes. Thurmond represented South Carolina in the United States Senate from 1954 until 2003, at first as a Democrat and, after 1964, as a Republican. He switched because of his opposition to the 1964 Civil Rights Act, disaffection with the liberalism of the national party, and his support for the conservatism and opposition to the Civil Rights bill of the Republican presidential candidate Senator Barry Goldwater. He left office as the only senator to reach the age of 100 while still in office and as the oldest-serving and longest-serving senator in U.S. history (although he was later surpassed in length of service by Robert Byrd and Daniel Inouye). Thurmond holds the record at 14 years as the longest-serving Dean of the United States Senate in U.S. history.

A Democratic (not all that liberal) president ended racial discrimination in the United States Military services. More recently, liberals, principally of the Democratic Party, have championed laws forbidding hiring discrimination against homosexuals. A liberal Democratic president has ordered a halt to anti-homosexual bias in the military services. These have been liberal initiatives with little or no support from the conservative faction.

I state without further elaboration that the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and similar civil rights legislation would not exist today if the conservatives presently representing the Tea Party coalition had their way.

Please view again the “Charlie Brown” cartoon posted above. Before being posted by my conservative Facebook friend it appeared on the Comical Conservative Facebook Facebook feed. My Facebook friend merely copied the cartoon from there and re-posted it on Facebook. It’s supposed to show that the Republican Party is being unfairly called racist by one of the cartoon characters. The other, the Charlie Brown character, refutes this by citing the Republican Party’s past support for civil rights and the Democratic Party’s support for Jim Crow laws and the KKK and its opposition to civil rights. Aside from the lack of relevance (which I have addressed), there is something else notable:

It is not a white kid standing there calling the Republican Party racist. It’s a black kid. Why did the cartoonist see fit to draw a black kid calling the Republican’s racist? The choice was not an accident. It represents a lingering mindset of America’s conservative cellar.

55 thoughts on “Quick History Lesson

    • This author is your typical Deceitful and Dishonest DemonRat. Regardless of labels changing, it makes no difference on his word play on Liberals and Conservatives, the simple Truth is you can’t change the simple FACT DemonKKKrats have always been the Party of Racists with their KKK Wing, Jim Crow Laws, Segregation, and today with their Black Racial Arsonists and Poverty Pimps. Yes, the lone good Democrat in history in JFK called himself a Liberal, bit today he’s be a Far Right Wing NeoCon Teabagger by today’s Leftist DemonRats. It doesn’t change the FACT he was an aberration within the Dems Criminal Organization. JFK of course was murdered by sociopath LBJ, or at least those of US educated on the subject. But like this misleading opionion piece article, he tries whitewashing the Democrats shameful history of RACISM and Corruption that is the Dems past and present history….

      • And this commenter is a typical hyper-reactive conservotard that jacks off to Rush Limbaugh and Alex Jones, then goes online and uses grade-school level too-cute-by-half insults (DemonKKKrats… seriously? What are you, 12?) and can’t help themselves from making knee-jerk comments to ANY positive response to this article. If you’ve ever wondered why he leaves your comments up instead of removing them, it’s because your own words do a far better job of exposing who you are and what you actually (don’t) know than any response or critique could. Keep telling yourself you’re not racist – repetition makes it true.

  1. Well presented. I was skeptical of these types of statements before, by both sides, but now know why that was so in a much more concise way, thanks to your efforts here. Thank you.

    • He’s an uneducated American Idiot trying to hide his Parties history of RACISM and Murder. Absolutely mind boggling the Stupidity of the opinion piece.

    • And you are the Typical Response of a Liberal! Facts are that Republicans voted for these Amendments and Dems voted against them. Did you forget Jim Crow Laws about the same timeline? Or do you think Liberals were Republicans back then? Which is it? You can’t say something that goes fully against the FACTS without proving your words with FACTS! So with what you’re trying to say you want us to believe that Liberals were Republicans then and today Liberals are Democrats? What made them decide to change? Was it because they saw the Power of Racism in today’s Democrats? Or maybe it was because they changed their ways after they got rich like Modern day Hollywood Liberals do! Feeling guilty from their own rich selves to make amend for their own sins! Either way Proof and Facts are something your words are lacking. It blows your Theory UP! Liberals are the ones who want other People to live by their Standards but keep changing their Standards to fit their own amends for their own sins they feel in their own minds! Liberals also want people to live in peace with each other until they(Liberals) decide it’s against their own thinking. Liberals are the only people that can’t live with/beside other Liberals! All facts you seem to not know or won’t accept! No thanks your talking points are just another way a Liberal tries to make amends for the sin they feel or think in their own minds! Which never stops changing day to day!

      • Erwin Padgett overlooks the sum total of the original post. The posting from The Comical Conservative sought to portray the 21st century Democratic Party as politically conservative, in opposition to the abolition of slavery, women’s rights, and more. The Democratic Party of today is considered the standard bearer for liberal causes, such as human rights, while the Republican party is squarely conservative.

        It does not take a deep inspection to sort this matter out. Look at the neo-Nazis, the Confederate flag wavers, the anti-LGBT crowd. Whose rallies do they regularly attend and cheer? It is not any of the Democratic candidate rallies. Republicans have aligned themselves squarely with conservative values, and now they are going to have to own the whole thing.

  2. I saw a person on Facebook post this very same thing. He’s a little older than I am (I’m an incoming college freshman). Sad to see that people in my generation aren’t even educated on matters of their own country, let alone foreign affairs. I’m tempted to leave this link on his posting.

    • The author is extremely uneducated. You can’t change the Voting Record of DemonKKKrats against Civil Rights, and the FACT they wrote and passed every Racist Legislation in the history of the USA. They can only try to blame and LIE their racist past on someone else.

  3. Simply put: Our imperfect existence in this imperfect world is a continuous struggle between:
    ————GOOD vs. EVIL

    Need more details? Please read on…

    Obama and his fellow leftists, socialists, and/or communists (also known in the USA as “liberals, progressives, moderates, Democrats” and other American misnomers) favor TYRANNY based command and control (aka centrally planned or communistic) economy wherein the government officials decide; because they know better than you (the citizenry) what is good for you. Thus, in a command & control economy, the government officials are superior and they treat you as their inferior. They love their superiority so much that they are vehemently against the rightists-capitalists who favor FREEDOM based free market (aka unplanned or capitalistic) economy, wherein you decide because you know best what’s good for you. Hence, in a free market economy, you are treated as an equal by the government officials.

    Many people think mixing those two economic systems above might be the better way to go because the general citizenry would then have the best of both worlds. One of them was UK economist John Maynard Keynes, who also thought this idea was new and needed to be tried. Keynes seemed to have forgotten that Karl Marx and his followers had already theorized a mixed economy when they defined SOCIALISM as the phase or stage when a society is transitioning from capitalism to communism, thereby mixing the features of both systems.

    Here is a list of ten US PRESIDENTS, how they implemented various economic policies during their terms in office, and their respective results:

    ——– a. Rightist Calvin Coolidge implemented genuine free market capitalism by minimizing, if not totally eliminating, crony capitalism. He also reduced taxes & spending, and made the government smaller. Result: Budget surplus and the PROSPERITY of the ROARING TWENTIES. Please click:

    ——– b. Leftist Franklin Delano Roosevelt started massive Keynesian government interventions during The Great Depression. Result: It prolonged the effects of that devastating depression. Please click:

    ——– c. Leftist Lyndon Baines Johnson, following Keynesian model, declared “War on Poverty”. Result: Poverty won. Please click: [http://news.investors.com/ibd-editorials/010814-685709-johnsons-war-on-poverty-has-been-lost.htm]

    ——– d. Moderate (mixed bag) Richard Nixon imposed wage and price freeze to control inflation. Result: The economy worsened and he became so unpopular to both leftists and rightists that he was about to be impeached for Watergate scandal. He decided to resign instead.

    ——– e. Leftist Jimmy Carter implemented the Keynesian model and like LBJ, he also fought poverty “with the moral equivalence of war.” Result: Stagflation (a stagnant economy with high inflation rate) which Keynes said would be impossible and/or would never happen under his model (he was dead wrong!). Please click:

    ——– f. Ronald Reagan, a rightist-capitalist-free marketer, REVERSED Carter’s Keynesian model, implemented deregulations /privatizations, reduced taxes and government spending, and weakened the power of leftist labor unions. Result: At first, the economy worsened; and after the first two years of his administration, the economy started a genuine & robust economic boom. Please click:

    ——– g. George H.W. Bush, a “moderate” (or mixed bag of leftist-rightist policies), continued most of Reagan’s policies, except he agreed to leftists’ demands to raise taxes despite his promise of “READ MY LIPS, NO NEW TAXES.”. Result: Reagan’s economic boom continued albeit slower due to higher taxes. Please watch:

    ——– h. “Moderate” Bill Clinton reduced government spending in some areas (like defense) but increased spending on his revival of Carter’s CRA (Community Reinvestment Act–which was previously reversed by Reagan). Bill Clinton expanded CRA by empowering community organizations (e.g. ACORN and Greenlining Institute) with picketing rights thereby forcing the banks to provide home mortgages to poor people with bad credit ratings. Many poor people bought homes they could not afford thereby creating a housing “boom” which later turn out to be a housing bubble that eventually burst during George W. Bush’s second term. Result: The economic crisis we are still feeling today (but was erroneously blamed by many leftists as G.W. Bush’s fault just because the housing bubble burst during his term). Please watch:

    ——– i. George W. Bush, a “moderate,” did not or could not reverse Clinton’s revival of Carter’s CRA. Result: The housing bubble continued to grow until it burst. Near the end of G.W. Bush’s term, he implemented a massive Keynesian bailout of companies, which did not improve the economy. Please click:

    ——– j. Barrack Hussein Obama, a leftist, implemented an even more massive Keynesian bailout of more failed companies. Result: In general, the effects of economic bust are being prolonged (except for a few ECONOMIC BUBBLES that would eventually burst too), just as FDR’s government interventions prolonged The Great Depression. Please click:

    The above sequence of presidential policies and philosophies should be enough for leftists to learn that both the leftist and the Keynesian economic model of “moderate” or mixture of leftist-rightist government intervention would never work. Yet, those leftists or leftist-rightist-mixers keep using those same failed policies over and over, while expecting a different result. Please click:

    • Ike,

      Thanks for posting this interesting note. Of course I, as well as others, may be wondering why it is posted here. Your “reply” was attached to an item about civil rights, yet it doesn’t touch on the topic. I will leave your reply here, but in the future if you have something interesting to say and you can’t find the proper place to post it, just let me know, and I will create a new post with your comments.

      John Blanton

      • Ike, well done! A key point in the summation of the Quick History Lesson was to illustrate a premise, albeit false, that Early Dems were Conservative and early GOPs were liberal and somehow they apparently got together and said, “ok now let’s switch”. Your reply, although not directly about civil rights, points out the failed liberal policies that are usually touted as a cure for economic equality and therefore affects, disproportionately I might add, the financial woes of those the conservatives fought so hard for to get their “civil rights”. So in a roundabout and easily recognizable way, you were talking about civil rights. Well done.

  4. Party affiliations of conservatives and liberals/progressives has indeed changed over the years. As today, I bet any voter in either camp would have told us, over all those 220 years, which party a member of their group — or by elimination the member of the other group — would vote for.

    The cartoon draws on the ignorance of those who would fall for its implication. Really, are we that ignorant?

    • Right, Jeff!

      Property ownership is a primary Civil Right! It includes the ownership of oneself, property, money, and other honestly derived items.

      It’s not granted to us by government; we are born with it.

      Governments are SUPPOSED to protect such rights, but instead they are the primary violators of it. Socialism attempts to legalize plunder of our property, labor, time, and, ultimately, our lives.

  5. That “transition” you speak of is a cute story … but the Civil Rights Act was in 1964. I think your math is off by a few decades give or take a hundred years.

    A Short History of Democrats, Republicans, and Racism

    The following are a few basic historical facts that every American should know.

    Fact: The Republican Party was founded primarily to oppose slavery, and Republicans eventually abolished slavery. The Democratic Party fought them and tried to maintain and expand slavery. The 13th Amendment, abolishing slavery, passed in 1865 with 100% Republican support but only 23% Democrat support in congress.

    Why is this indisputable fact so rarely mentioned? PBS documentaries about slavery and the Civil War barely mention it, for example. One can certainly argue that the parties have changed in 150 years (more about that below), but that does not change the historical fact that it was the Democrats who supported slavery and the Republicans who opposed it. And that indisputable fact should not be airbrushed out for fear that it will tarnish the modern Democratic Party.

    Had the positions of the parties been the opposite, and the Democrats had fought the Republicans to end slavery, the historical party roles would no doubt be repeated incessantly in these documentaries. Funny how that works.

    Fact: During the Civil War era, the “Radical Republicans” were given that name because they wanted to not only end slavery but also to endow the freed slaves with full citizenship, equality, and rights.

    Yes, that was indeed a radical idea at the time!

    Fact: Lincoln’s Vice President, Andrew Johnson, was a strongly pro-Union (but also pro-slavery) Democrat who had been chosen by Lincoln as a compromise running mate to attract Democrats. After Lincoln was assassinated, Johnson thwarted Republican efforts in Congress to recognize the civil rights of the freed slaves, and Southern Democrats continued to thwart any such efforts for close to a century.

    Fact: The 14th Amendment, giving full citizenship to freed slaves, passed in 1868 with 94% Republican support and 0% Democrat support in congress. The 15th Amendment, giving freed slaves the right to vote, passed in 1870 with 100% Republican support and 0% Democrat support in congress.

    Regardless of what has happened since then, shouldn’t we be grateful to the Republicans for these Amendments to the Constitution? And shouldn’t we remember which party stood for freedom and which party fiercely opposed it?

    Fact: The Ku Klux Klan was originally and primarily an arm of the Southern Democratic Party. Its mission was to terrorize freed slaves and “ni**er-loving” (their words) Republicans who sympathized with them.

    Why is this fact conveniently omitted in so many popular histories and depictions of the KKK, including PBS documentaries? Had the KKK been founded by Republicans, that fact would no doubt be repeated constantly on those shows.

    Fact: In the 1950s, President Eisenhower, a Republican, integrated the US military and promoted civil rights for minorities. Eisenhower pushed through the Civil Rights Act of 1957. One of Eisenhower’s primary political opponents on civil rights prior to 1957 was none other than Lyndon Johnson, then the Democratic Senate Majority Leader. LBJ had voted the straight segregationist line until he changed his position and supported the 1957 Act.

    Fact: The historic Civil Rights Act of 1964 was supported by a higher percentage of Republicans than Democrats in both houses of Congress. In the House, 80 percent of the Republicans and 63 percent of the Democrats voted in favor. In the Senate, 82 percent of the Republicans and 69 percent of the Democrats voted for it.

    Fact: Contrary to popular misconception, the parties never “switched” on racism. The Democrats just switched from overt racism to a subversive strategy of getting blacks as dependent as possible on government to secure their votes. At the same time, they began a cynical smear campaign to label anyone who opposes their devious strategy as greedy racists.

    Following the epic civil rights struggles of the 1960s, the South began a major demographic shift from Democratic to Republican dominance. Many believe that this shift was motivated by racism. While it is certainly true that many Southern racists abandoned the Democratic Party over its new support for racial equality and integration, the notion that they would flock to the Republican Party — which was a century ahead of the Democrats on those issues — makes no sense whatsoever.

    Yet virtually every liberal, when pressed on the matter, will inevitably claim that the parties “switched,” and most racist Democrats became Republicans! In their minds, this historical ju jitsu maneuver apparently transfers all the past sins of the Democrats (slavery, the KKK, Jim Crow laws, etc.) onto the Republicans and all the past virtues of the Republicans (e.g., ending slavery) onto the Democrats! That’s quite a feat!

    It is true that Barry Goldwater’s opposition to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 probably attracted some racist Democrats to the Republican Party. However, Goldwater was not a racist — at least not an overt racist like so many Southern Democrats of the time, such as George Wallace and Bull Connor. He publicly professed racial equality, and his opposition to the 1964 Act was based on principled grounds of states rights. In any case, his libertarian views were out of step with the mainstream, and he lost the 1964 Presidential election to LBJ in a landslide.

    But Goldwater’s opposition to the 1964 Civil Rights Act provided liberals an opening to tar the Republican Party as racist, and they have tenaciously repeated that label so often over the years that it is now the conventional wisdom among liberals. But it is really nothing more than an unsubstantiated myth — a convenient political lie. If the Republican Party was any more racist than the Democratic Party even in 1964, why did a higher percentage of Republicans than Democrats in both houses of Congress vote for the 1964 Civil Rights Act? The idea that Goldwater’s vote on the 1964 Civil Rights Act trumps a century of history of the Republican Party is ridiculous, to say the least.

    Every political party has its racists, but the notion that Republicans are more racist than Democrats or any other party is based on nothing more than a constant drumbeat of unsubstantiated innuendo and assertions by Leftists, constantly echoed by the liberal media. It is a classic example of a Big Lie that becomes “true” simply by virtue of being repeated so many times.

    A more likely explanation for the long-term shift from Democratic to Republican dominance in the South was the perception, fair or not, that the Democratic Party had rejected traditional Christian religious values and embraced radical secularism. That includes its hardline support for abortion, its rejection of prayer in public schools, its promotion of the gay agenda, and many other issues.

    In the 1960s the Democratic Party changed its strategy for dealing with African Americans. Thanks to earlier Republican initiatives on civil rights, blatant racial oppression was no longer a viable political option. Whereas before that time Southern Democrats had overtly and proudly segregated and terrorized blacks, the national Democratic Party decided instead to be more subtle and get them as dependent on government as possible. As LBJ so elegantly put it (in a famous moment of candor that was recorded for posterity), “I’ll have those niggers voting Democratic for the next 200 years.” At the same time, the Democrats started a persistent campaign of lies and innuendo, falsely equating any opposition to their welfare state with racism.

    From a purely cynical political perspective, the Democratic strategy of black dependence has been extremely effective. LBJ knew exactly what he was doing. African Americans routinely vote well over 90 percent Democratic for fear that Republicans will cut their government benefits and welfare programs. And what is the result? Before LBJ’s Great Society welfare programs, the black illegitimacy rate was as low as 23 percent, but now it has more than tripled to 72 percent.

    Most major American city governments have been run by liberal Democrats for decades, and most of those cities have large black sections that are essentially dysfunctional anarchies. Cities like Detroit are overrun by gangs and drug dealers, with burned out homes on every block in some areas. The land values are so low due to crime, blight, and lack of economic opportunity that condemned homes are not even worth rebuilding. Who wants to build a home in an urban war zone? Yet they keep electing liberal Democrats — and blaming “racist” Republicans for their problems!

    Washington DC is another city that has been dominated by liberal Democrats for decades. It spends more per capita on students than almost any other city in the world, yet it has some of the worst academic achievement anywhere and is a drug-infested hellhole. Barack Obama would not dream of sending his own precious daughters to the DC public schools, of course — but he assures us that those schools are good enough for everyone else. In fact, Obama was instrumental in killing a popular and effective school voucher program in DC, effectively killing hopes for many poor black families trapped in those dysfunctional public schools. His allegiance to the teachers unions apparently trumps his concern for poor black families.

    A strong argument could also be made that Democratic support for perpetual affirmative action is racist. It is, after all, the antithesis of Martin Luther King’s dream of a color-blind society. Not only is it “reverse racism,” but it is based on the premise that African Americans are incapable of competing in the free market on a level playing field. In other words, it is based on the notion of white supremacy, albeit “benevolent” white supremacy rather than the openly hostile white supremacy of the pre-1960s Democratic Party.

    The next time someone claims that Republicans are racist and Democrats are not, don’t fall for it.

    • Gil,

      Your comment is welcome and well stated. Except that it seems you regurgitated the essence of my post. The early Republican party was the entity behind the abolition of slavery while the Democratic Party of the time defended slavery. Read my original post carefully, and you will note my point is that the terms Democratic Party and Republican Party are not pertinent. What terms are pertinent are liberal (or progressive) and conservative. A casual, even careful, observation shows that racists tend to the the conservative movement. You don’t see a lot of people show up at Democratic Party (liberal) functions these days sporting Confederate battle flags. KKK members tend not to vote for liberal causes. Who owns liberal versus conservative thinking varies from time to time. Few would disagree that these days liberals drift to the Democratic Party.

      John Blanton

      • What is your definition of “liberal” and “conservative”? It may not have been your intention, but failing to define these terms in context makes your whole argument seem like little more than a smokescreen. Likewise, Gil Rosen in his last six paragraphs (at least) DOES address your claim head-on, but you seem to ignore it. In particular his paragraph that starts “A more likely explanation…”.

        There are two problems in this discussion.

        One is this idea that we have have two parties in this country and one is “racist” and one is not. While this may have been the case in the past, today the racists don’t fit either party. Society is overwhelmingly in agreement that racism is bad. This doesn’t mean that there isn’t rampant hypocrisy on the issue. So the history of the Democrats strong racism, doesn’t require that they are still racist today. MUCH LESS SO does it mean that those once racist democrats have necessarily become republican. This is presented as if in our two-party system that one must be racist. In reality, both parties would officially disavow racism. Historically, you could accurately say that the republican party won out on this issue and the democrats eventually “saw the light”. However, it is still because society at large has accepted racism as a bad thing overall. As a result, comparing the parties in terms of racism and non-racism doesn’t make sense. It isn’t right to say that democrats today are “racist” because of their history of racism. HOWEVER, it is even more dishonest for those same democrats to say that republicans are racist because of some supposed switch as if there must be on party for and one against racism. So in this sense, your argument is partially true. You are right that the history of the democratic party does not necessitate that democrats today are racist. Yet, you make the same error in reverse which leads into the second part of the problem.

        The second problem is your use of the terms “liberal” and “conservative”. You say that in the past the republicans were “liberal” and the democrats were “conservative” and vice versa. IF that is true, then it would follow that the thinking and beliefs of Abraham Lincoln would be comparable to that of John Lennon or Michael Moore. If that doesn’t sound like comparing apples to oranges, then you need to read some of Lincoln’s speeches. In fact, Racism may be the ONLY issue that the two would agree on. That said, Prominent democrats of the past, such as Andrew Johnson, Woodrow Wilson, or even JFK would be much closer to Lincoln in the modern sense of “liberal vs. conservative” than any of today’s “liberals”. Your lack of definition is the only thing enabling you to make this argument. There is not some division in this country between liberal and conservative that runs the length of our history. Not in terms of today’s definition for sure. Just as the racist/non-racist parties both merged to be non-racist today, so the once conservative nation has also divided and become a nation of liberals vs. conservatives. This split emerged prominently in the 60’s and is a battle that continues to be waged today. It wouldn’t surprise me that in the future we’ll have a nation that by and large is one way or the other. The first divide took a civil war and a whole lot of conflict to resolve – with ramifications still lingering to this day. Will we need to fight another war within ourselves? Certainly we are engaged in a culture war already.

        I have to add that I’m speaking above in general terms. No doubt, you or someone else will come up with exceptions. You cannot discuss a subject like this without exceptions. There are black people who are extremely racist. Some of the countries founders had very “liberal” ideas. There are democrats today who are really quite conservative. And the list could go on and on of exceptions. This should go without saying, but in these discussions, any conversational progress is always mired in those who like to find and exception and say “nyah nyah nyah – such and such exception exists so you are wrong.”

        In conclusion, the democratic party of today stems from a history or racism, but this doesn’t mean they are unable to change. Certainly, the so called “urban plantation” situation following the policies implemented by LBJ is bad and is a creation of the democratic party. This doesn’t mean they are racist, but it would suggest they are selfish and cruel – even if unwittingly so. Likewise, the argument made that there was a switch from liberal republicans and conservative democrats to conservative republicans and liberal democrats is completely unsubstantiated and could only be proposed in an absence of a clear understanding of what those two terms mean.

      • Only a short response. Maybe more later.

        I will not attempt to define “liberal” and “conservative.” I don’t need to. Others have done that for me. I watch the political ads on TV and get them over the Internet, and here is what I see. I see Republican candidates declaring they are true conservatives. At the same time they charge the Democratic opposition as being left-leaning liberals, or similar terms. When the candidates change the definition I will reconsider my use of the terms.

        Regarding the character of conservatives, I see politicians advertise themselves as conservative, and in the next sentence they denounce same-sex marriage, legal protection from discrimination based on sexual orientation, separation of church and state.

        Regarding whether the Republican Party is racist, it is not. And it’s not a lot of other things. But this I notice. The guy sporting the Confederate battle flag motif does not show up at the rally to support Hillary Clinton, but he does show up and support Donald Trump. The pastor who condemns homosexuals as evil, in the next breath urges people to vote for the Republican candidate. You are invited to turn this around.

  6. HAHAHAHA the liberals or democrats never changed and never change.
    Hillary Clinton about KKK leader “he’s a mentor and friend” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p4wo9nqWrwE
    Hillary Clinton admires Margarete Sanger, who supported the black genocide with Eugenics, the science Nazi-Germany used too https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5W-iP_oejJ8

    The Democrats are still racist and blacks and GLBTs are following blindly without asking the right questions. Sheep that get led to the slaughter by the shepard.

    • Alec, if that’s your name:

      Thanks for commenting. As a supposed rebuttal of liberal values you posted links to two videos, and I took some time to watch them. The first shows Hillary Clinton giving a eulogy to the late Senator Robert Byrd, a former conservative. Yes, the man is dead. Yes, members of the government are remarking on his life. If I am to take your use of this video as a statement of your position, then it would appear you are blasting Clinton for saying something nice about a conservative from years gone by.

      Regarding Clinton’s remarks about Margaret Sanger, they appear to be right on. Margaret Sanger had some ideas many today would object to. Clinton, in her response, put these ideas into perspective.

      I hope you don’t mind, but I left your spelling and grammar as-submitted and did not attempt to make any corrections.

    • Wow, you’re pathetically stupid. Byrd was a FORMER KKK member that regretted it and categorized it as a stupid decision made when he was very young. You think there aren’t a shit-ton of Republican politicians out there that have said positive things about well-known and self-admitted racists? Keep that head in the sand like the regressive cuck that you are. Like I said, pathetic.

    • John,

      I’m sure you realize “conservative” and “liberal” are vague terms, often used differently. Republicans and Democrats both misuse the terms. Thus, if you use such words, it should be easy for you to define them as YOU used them in your piece.

      As it stands, it appears you dodge your responsibility for clarity by foisting it off on unspecified “others.”

      Could you at least tell us whose definition YOU are using?

      • Dan,

        As explained elsewhere, it is people, themselves, who identify themselves as conservative and liberal. I noticed growing up that the people who felt comfortable saying things like, “Niggers need to be kept in their place,” self-identified as conservatives. People who marched (some died) for civil rights self-identified as liberal. I am not the one who invented these labels. Nor applied them.

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  9. Gee, look at all the proof and references of “conservative” politic then and now. I’ve read a lot about A. Lincoln and F. Douglas and they both seemed to be pretty conservative by 1860s and 2016 standards. Thanks for your OPINION.

  10. You are proveably wrong.

    The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was passed with more Democratic votes than Republican votes, BUT, only because the D significantly outnumbered the R.

    Percentage of democrats voting FOR civil right: 69.5%
    Percentage of republicans voting FOR civil right: 76.4%

    This is per the official US Congress roll call voting records.

    What was that about some phantom “flip-flop” about which party truly favors equal rights?

    Facts do not favor democrats, especially when unbiased sources are used.

    • So where are these facts and “unbiased sources” ? Or do you just go around making vague, juvenile statements like that and hope you don’t get challenged on them? You guys are hilarious.

      • Responding to Scott: I pulled up the referenced voting records and will include them in a future post. They show something you might find unpleasant. Comment or respond by email if you want to be participate in that discussion.

  11. Wow! Jamie White would have a field day with you in his Crimes Against Logic. Right in the middle or your analysis, you switch the terms from Democrat/Republican to liberal/conservative without defining them or even giving us a clue what you think you mean. Apparently “liberal” was anyone who voted for what you like, and conservative is anyone who voted against what you like. That way, you get to obscure the fact that you’re making up the terms of the debate to produce the outcome you want in your “analysis:” Democrat=Good Republican=Evil.

    Another reason to avoid political blogs – most of the authors are just there to rant about their preferences and try to convince the readers that there’s some sort of pristine logic or science that supports their prejudices.

  12. So you assume that abolishing slavery and elevating humanity is a liberal concept, and not a conservative one? And then you just “assign” this assumption to a political party based on your bias? You believe that conservatives, now politically associated with republicans, would not vote for the 13th, 14th, or 15th amendments? Shame on you for convoluting the facts. Dishonesty seems to be the flavor of politics these days, BOTH parties. If you think it through further, it is clear to me that the current democrat party has figured out how to keep african americans as slaves, and bonus: African Americans love them for it! They make up about 13% of the population, yet the bulk of government assistance and generational welfare by PERCENTAGE rate. Almost 40% of black males ages 18-25 are UNEMPLOYED. Home ownership, salaries, future prospects—all worse in the last 8 years under democrat rule. Yet somehow the democrat party has figured out that keeping African Americans under educated and dependent on generational welfare, all the while pretending to care about them by supporting their own notion that they are being “kept down” by the white man/national bias, earns democrats the coveted African American vote. It’s not about the “hand up” for those who could REALLY use it; it’s about keeping them underserved so there will always be discord. And then the democrats lay the blame solely on the shoulders of “conservatives” aka republicans at this point in time. “Blame your lot in life on Republicans who want to reduce your dependency and provide a path for you to lift YOURSELF out of poverty—Vote Democrat”! It seems that the democrats STILL don’t want equality for the Black race. You ever watch politicians interact with welfare African Americans? Or middle to upper class people interacting with the poor in general? You could cut the awkwardness with a knife! It’s so condescending that it’s too painful to watch. I’m sure there are well intended democrats, but on the national stage and politically, it is NOT in the best interest of the party to lift these people out of poverty. The ugly truth is that ONLY the Black man can lift himself out of poverty. The job of government and BOTH parties is to provide a structure that guides them, and all of us, to that end. Not surprisingly, it is in the human nature to want to blame others for personal failures, but democrats have made a living out of convincing minorities in general that their poverty is completely the fault of others. So, history tells us that early on as a nation, we chose the right path for humanity with these amendments to our constitution, but also teaches us that the manipulation of these same fellow americans perpetuates the tenents of slavery. I’m pretty sure that no one reading this knows anyone who was a slave on a plantation, or a slave owner. And I don’t think anyone associated with the Black Lives Matter movement was a slave, but I understand how they might have that notion based on democrat policy. I believe that most african americans have access to a computer and have a good idea of what it takes to become a lawyer, doctor, nurse, teacher, electrician, banker, etc. I believe education is the key. Unfortunately, I also believe that the poorest among them either feel no need or desire to better themselves, or have no hope to better themselves. Either way, it’s tragic. We argue over who voted or didn’t vote for these amendments, and pat ourselves on the back for abolishing slavery and elevating the Black race, yet they are sadly STILL slaves and our political parties treat them like pets that can be manipulated for personal and party gain.

  13. One huge flaw in your analysis, of the 1,600 democrats in that time period, of democrats who were racist, who built and invented the KKK, only 1% switched to the Rep party.

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  15. After seeing this type of meme way too often recently, I planned to post the history behind the Republican and Democratic parties as well.

    I think one thing you left out (or I missed it) is that Northern Republicans AND Democrats tended to be the Liberal side and the Southern Democrats and Republicans (Dixiecrats) tended to be the Conservative side. The political divide was North/South and not Democratic/Republican. As you pointed out, this mostly changed in the 1960’s to where we see the parties today.

    I’ll have to find it but at one time I had a list of Senators who voted for and against slavery and women’s rights and the votes went along that North/South line. It was indeed the Conservative Democrats and Republican’s who voted against Women’s rights and to end slavery.

    My apologies for the flack you are getting from people who do not know any better.

  16. ND,

    I am assuming ND is your real name.

    I have answered a number of comments similar to yours, specifically that the Democratic party of today is the party of racism, and the Republican party is not. I cannot speak for the Republican Party, but I only observe that when racists, those shouting “nigger” and “white power,” show up at Republican Party functions and are often not roundly denounced. I never see these people welcomed into the fold of the Democratic Party. Can you explain why that is?

    John Blanton

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  19. So many good and interesting comments. About the North/South divide, a fact that is now rarely noted is that Jim Crow actions and laws began in the North app. sixty years before they were common in the South. Also note the term Liberal transformed and continued to do so. Using the term as it was in the 19th Century, the North might not have been more liberal at that time. Now circling back: Was Jim Crow a Democrat idea and favorite policy? I think so.

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  22. There are few members of the Tea Party movement who were active politically in 1965. And the issues that led to the Tea Party are totally unrelated to the civil rights issue of the ‘60s, where were formed by the need to end the Segregation regime.

  23. The parties did not switch sides. The Democratic parties changed rhetoric because the black vote became so important. HOWEVER, if you study the history of the democratic party, you will find that their aim was to as your president LBJ says, “….keep the niggers voting democrat for 200 years”. Not for the benefit of blacks, but for the benefit of whites – specifically whites in the democratic party. As for progressives, that is a term whose support has always fallen within the democratic party starting with Andrew Jackson. Very popular among both southern and northern democrats. Based on my reading, there were less than 20 democrats of the 1500 over time, who have switched sides. You give no credible evidence to suggest why such a switch would iccur. Imagine such a thing happening now. The division was even much starker in the 1800’s. You mentioned the women’s suffrage, but didn’t mention that it was blocked by democrats. In fact most bills pertaining to federal laws that would prohibit a state from becoming a dictator of racism , and misogyny were defeated by a largely democratic and at the time, democratic majority vote. Just look it up. The 13th, 14th, and 15th amendment were passed because Republicans voted overwhelmingly in their favor. Blacks began voting democrat not because democrats weren’t racist, but because the democratic party was promising more handouts during a time when Blacks were in desperate need of help. Unfortunately those policies, turned out to be a deal with the devil, as the only gave crumbs to Black Americans with one hand while pulverizing the real opportunities that freedom and self governance offer with three other. Just look at our government run cities today. I think most democrats believe they are doing the right thing, but the democratic party policies are born to disenfranchise blacks and other minorities. The Republican party has certainly been struggling, and not all in the conservative party are good Republicans, returning to limited government ideology that the party was founded on, but despite the rhetoric to the opposite, Republican policies allow people to thrive and experience liberty in a way citizens cannot if they are beholden to the government.
    As a black woman, it has taken years to shed off the brainwashing of the progressive rhetoric, but reading the facts – and all the facts goes a long way. Everyone one who writes on this subject is very dedicated to their cause- whether progressive or conservative – and thus makes certain assumptions without realizing. Don’t take our word for it read! Decipher for yourself and read the actual documents readily available to anyone who will ask.

  24. I was skeptical of this when I saw it. Hence how I found this article. However, there were parties then that have been basically absorbed by left or right. The president’s before consisted of Federalist, Whig, and, more notably and relevant to this, Democratic-Republican. Democratic-Republicans ideology was to strictly adhere to the Constitution… kinda like conservatives. Just saying….

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  27. So much of this is false. The believe that many of the RACIST DEMOCRATS during the late 1800’s is simply UNTRUE! Of the over 1600 politicians from then to now, only a small handful ACTUALLY changed parties. “The Big Switch” has been the lefts attempt to cover up their ideals over the last several hundred years. What democrats did was they got smart. They wanted to keep African Americans in slavery. And although the structure of equal rights has become what it is today, just take a look at any large urban city and ask the question, “have democrats been able to keep blacks in an impoverished state of false freedom?” Guess who has controlled ALL of the large cities in the last century or more?? I’ll give you a hint…..it’s NOT Republicans!

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  29. It’s a shame that you refuse to see the truth.
    If you just look at our country and all the cities that have been under Democrat’s control for years have high crime rates and poor people waiting to see what’s next on the welfare line.
    Generational welfare and the sad fact that you don’t see Rev Al or Jackson or any big money ball players giving a damn about young black men killing each other. They want to take a knee on Sunday go back to there big houses on Monday. They all show up or pop off if white cop shoots black guy but everyday black men are killing each other and they can’t be found.If you really care and really want to change things quit Bitching about how bad things are and do something to change it. The sad fact is most people have no idea what Dr king was saying or what Rosa Parks done or Malcolm X they just keep putting rich white and black dems in office and wonder why things ain’t better. The true sign of a fool is to keep doing the same thing day in and day out expecting a different outcome it’s just sad.

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