Charles Sumner

Lying In State And Honor At The US Capitol Rotunda In American History

The Reverend Billy Graham is lying in state and honor at the US Capitol Rotunda in Washington, DC today.

This is a rare event, and Graham is only the fourth private person outside of government to be so honored, along with Civil Rights Icon Rosa Parks in 2005, and two police officers who defended the Capitol from a gunman in 1998.

The list of government figures who have been so honored include 11 Presidents; 10 Senators; Soldiers of the various wars of America in the 20th century; and a few other military and government figures.

Henry Clay 1852
Abraham Lincoln 1865
Thaddeus Stevens 1868
Charles Sumner 1874
Henry Wilson 1875
James A. Garfield 1881
John A Logan 1886
William McKinley 1901
Pierre Charles L’Enfant 1909
George Dewey 1917
Unknown Soldiers of World War I 1921
Warren G. Harding 1923
William Howard Taft 1930
John Joseph Pershing 1948
Robert A. Taft 1953
Unknown Soldiers of World War II and the Korean War 1958
John F. Kennedy 1963
Douglas MacArthur 1964
Herbert Clark Hoover 1964
Dwight D. Eisenhower 1969
Everett McKinley Dirksen 1969
J. Edgar Hoover 1972
Lyndon Baines Johnson 1973
Hubert H. Humphrey 1978
Unknown Soldier Of the Vietnam Conflict 1984
Claude Denson Pepper 1989
Jacob Joseph Chestnut and John Michael Gibson (US Capitol Police Officers)
Ronald Wilson Reagan 2004
Rosa Parks 2005
Gerald R. Ford, Jr. 2006-2007
Daniel K. Inouye 2012

Additionally, Salmon P. Chase 1873 in the Senate chamber; Samuel Hooper 1875 in the House chamber; also Thurgood Marshall in 1993, Warren Burger in 1995, and Antonin Scalia in 2016 at the US Supreme Court; as well as Commerce Secretary Ron Brown at the Commerce Department in 1996.

The Republican Party At The End Of 2017: Bereft Of All Principle, Common Decency, And Concern For The American People Who Are Not Wealthy And Privileged

Here we are on Christmas Day, and we would like to have the Christmas spirit far and wide in America.

But we cannot have that spirit, as the governing Republican Party at the end of 2017 is a shell of its old self.

The Republican Party today is not the party of Abraham Lincoln, William Seward, Thaddeus Stevens, and Charles Sumner. It is not the party of civil rights and racial equality.

The Republican Party today is not the party of Theodore Rooevelt, Robert La Follette, Sr., George Norris, and Charles Evans Hughes. It is not the party of progressive reform, of regulation of corporations and promotion of the environment.

The Republican Party today is not the party of Dwight D. Eisenhower, Nelson Rockefeller, William Scranton, and Earl Warren. It is not the party of world leadership and moderate domestic reform.

The Republican Party today is not the party of Gerald Ford, Charles Percy, Mark Hatfield, and Charles Mathias. It is not the party of bipartisan domestic and foreign policy.

Instead, the Republican Party is now the worst elements imaginable, bereft of all principle, common decency, and concern for the American people who are not wealthy and privileged.

It is an evil party, which has committed massive crimes against the American people and the world community.

It is a party which has shown no concern about breaking up families; destroying people’s lives; and consorts with enemies of the American Constitution and democratic values.

It is a party which has set out to destroy all domestic tranquility and foreign stability, all in the lunatic and maniacal craziness to enrich themselves and exploit others.

It is a party which professes religiosity, but ignores the Judeo-Christian tradition of “good works”.

It is a party of hypocrisy and the promotion of lies.

It is a party of disgraceful, selfish, greedy men and women who have declared war on the long held traditions of their party, and their super nationalism, xenophobia, and fascist tendencies endanger all Americans of color, other religions, and women who resist their evil intentions.

It is a party which deserves to go into the dustbin of history!

Historic Leaders Of The Senate Foreign Relations Committee

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee is one of the most important of all committees in the history of that body, having begun as early as 1816.

It is one of the most significant committees, with many future potential Presidential seekers wishing to be seen as “experts” on American foreign policy.

It is a committee often in conflict with the President of the United States on strategy and policy toward other nations.

There have been many colorful leaders of the committee, both Democrats and Republicans, who have become famed or notorious for their principles and impact on American foreign policy.

The committee again has become focused on as part of the heated debate over the Iran nuclear deal, and its recent former Chairman, John Kerry, is now the Secretary of State, charged with gaining the support of the committee, which, clearly, however, under Republican control, is a lost cause.

Among its leaders have been Presidential nominees Rufus King, Henry Clay, and John Kerry; President James Buchanan; and Vice Presidents Hannibal Hamlin and Joe Biden.

Such prominent political figures, other than those mentioned above, who served as Chairman of the committee include: Thomas Hart Benton, Charles Sumner, John Sherman, Henry Cabot Lodge, Sr., William Borah, Arthur Vandenberg, J. William Fulbright, Frank Church, Charles Percy, Richard Lugar, Claiborne Pell, Jesse Helms, and present Chairman Bob Corker, with Fulbright serving the longest as Chairman, 16 years from 1959-1975.

Those who made the most news included Lodge fighting Woodrow Wilson on the Versailles Treaty and League of Nations; Vandenberg playing a crucial role in backing the containment policy of President Harry Truman, despite them being from different parties; Fulbright fighting against the Vietnam War under Lyndon B. Johnson and Richard Nixon; and Helms being a major problem for Bill Clinton on many foreign policy issues.

The “New” South Vs. The “Old” South

The American South has undergone a lot of change in the past half century since the March On Washington in 1963.

Many Northerners have moved South; many people of African American and Latino heritage have grown up in an environment where segregation and open prejudice is gone: and we have seen Southern Presidents who completely represented a different image of the South.

So we have President Lyndon B. Johnson of Texas, who overcame his past and his heritage, and promoted the Civil Rights Revolution, including the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

We have Jimmy Carter of Georgia, the first Southerner elected from outside since Zachary Taylor in 1848, representing the “New South” Governors elected in 1970, including Ruben Askew of Florida and Dale Bumpers of Arkansas. Carter promoted advancements in civil rights and human rights, and demonstrated then, and right up to this moment, that he is a very principled, decent man.

And we have Bill Clinton, elected Governor of Arkansas, representing the New South tradition after Dale Bumpers had initiated it in Arkansas, and being a major promoter of civil rights and equality during his Presidency, as much as Johnson and Carter.

And we have John Lewis, the only surviving speaker at the March on Washington, now 73 years old, and carrying on the tradition of his mentor, Martin Luther King, Jr. He has been an exemplary Congressman from Georgia, and truly the conscience of the nation on civil rights!

These four gentlemen, three Presidents and a Congressman, represent the best of the “New South”!

The “Old South” was thought to be overcome, particularly over time with the death of Strom Thurmond, Jesse Helms, and others of their ilk.

But as it turns out, the “Old South” mentality has survived even past these two GOP leaders who promoted segregation and hate, as the 2013 Republican Party, with the evil influence of the Tea Party Movement, is working very hard to back track on racial equality, racial progress, racial justice, and using code language to appeal to the bigots and racists who remain in America, whether in the South or Midwest or Great Plains areas of the nation, and hoping to repeal the progress of the past half century.

They do this without shame or embarrassment, and that is what is most troubling, and they even have their talk show hosts on radio and television and cable, who spew forth hateful and divisive propaganda with no apologies–Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity et al—and make millions on promotion of hate and division, rather than trying to bring us together and move forward!

So the “Old South” is, ironically, surviving in the party of Abraham Lincoln, Thaddeus Stevens, Charles Sumner and the other principled Republicans of 150 years ago, who fought against the “Old South” and slavery, and would, if they were here today, hold their heads in their hands, and weep over what the Republican Party they loved, has become!

159th Anniversary Of Founding Of Republican Party: Not A Celebration!

The Republican Party, which gave us Abraham Lincoln, Thaddeus Stevens, Charles Sumner, William Seward in the years of the 1850s and 1860s; which gave us Theodore Roosevelt, Robert La Follette, Sr, George Norris, William Borah, Hiram Johnson in the 1900s-1940s; which gave us Dwight D. Eisenhower, Nelson Rockefeller, William Scranton, Henry Cabot Lodge Jr,, George Romney in the 1950s-1960s; and which gave us Mark Hatfield, Charles Mathias, Charles Percy, Howard Baker, Bob Dole, Gerald Ford in the 1970s–1990s, reached its 159th birthday today.

The Republican Party began as an anti slavery expansion party, with elements of abolitionism also present when the party began on this day in Ripon, Wisconsin in 1854.

It became the party of civil rights legislation, three civil rights constitutional amendments, progressive legislation, and supportive of much bipartisan legislation with Democrats in the New Deal and Great Society eras.

Of course, they had their evil elements, including McCarthyism, nativism, and tying themselves to organized religious influences that wished to take America backward, but until the past few years, they always had redeeming values in many ways, and would often denounce the extremists in their midst.

But now the Republican Party has become a party dominated by Tea Party radicals, who promote racism, misogyny, nativism, concern only to promote the welfare of the wealthy, and willingness to engage in foreign wars that have cost us dearly in treasure and loss of life and limb!

The Republican Party is no longer, in any way, reflective of its past, and in fact, insults its honorable, respectable history, sullying the names of its heroes and champions over a century and a half!

This is a tragedy of massive proportions, and the name “Republican” should be co-opted by the true moderates who are sitting by, watching the destruction going on, and holding their heads in their hands, ashamed that the name has been so damaged by reckless, anarchistic haters of the federal government! The party which fought the Civil War to uphold the Union is now more like the secessionist Democrats of that era!

Total Ignorance About American History: Michele Bachmann, Pat Buchanan And Other Republicans! :(

Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann is demonstrating her total ignorance of American history and the history of her Republican party, based on the text of her speech to be delivered tonight after President Obama’s State of the Union Address!

She says slavery was ended by the Founding Fathers, showing she is unaware of the role of her Republican Party, Abraham Lincoln, and the Civil War in ending slavery. She is, as always, demonstrating her total lack of knowledge of the American past and the American Constitution, joining many other Republicans, including Sarah Palin, in this regard! πŸ™

But now, Pat Buchanan, former challenger for the Presidency against George HW Bush in 1992, and running for President as a third party party candidate in 2000, has also demonstrated his lack of knowledge, by asserting there were more slaves in the Union states that had slaves (Maryland, Delaware, Kentucky, Missouri) than in any of the Confederate States that broke away from the Union! He also said incorrectly that George Washington freed his slaves after his wife died, but the reality is that his wife outlived him by over two years! πŸ™

The ignorance and lack of knowledge of these and other Republican leaders is shocking and reprehensible! πŸ™

The Founding Fathers (Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Madison, Hamilton, Franklin) and the statesmen of the pre Civil War era (Daniel Webster, Henry Clay, Stephen Douglas, William Seward, Charles Sumner, Abraham Lincoln) would be shocked and mortified if they came back today and witnessed the TOTAL STUPIDITY AND IGNORANCE of many GOP leaders, and Republicans of the Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, and Dwight D. Eisenhower era would also be ashamed of what their party has become: a party without legitimacy, ethics, character, and morality! πŸ™

Interpersonal Relationships On The Floor Of Congress: A Great Idea, And An Absolutely Insane Idea!

Democratic Senator Mark Udall of Colorado and Republican Congressman Louie Gohmert of Texas have proposed totally different ideas regarding interpersonal relationships on the floor of Congress.

Udall has promoted that Democrats and Republicans mingle and sit together when President Obama gives his State of the Union Address on January 25, as a way to promote civility and greater respect for each other, despite party differences, setting a good example for the nation at large.

On the other hand, Gohmert, notorious for being a “Birther” who believes that the President is not a US citizen, and believing that illegal immigrants come to this country to have babies, then go back to their home country and bring their children up to be terrorists 20-30 years later, has come up with an absolutely nutty idea: that members of the House of Representatives be permitted to pack guns on their person on the House floor! πŸ™

Why in the world would members of the House need a weapon on the floor, with people in the galleries and on C-Span able to witness that, when there is total security for everyone in the Capitol complex? Would they not be tempted to draw a weapon against an opponent who angers them with their rhetoric? πŸ™

Are we going to go back to the pre Civil War era, when members of Congress packed pistols, and Senator Charles Sumner of Massachusetts was assaulted with a cane by Congressman Preston Brooks of South Carolina? πŸ™

As usual, Gohmert is promoting insane ideas, while at the same time, Mark Udall is proving to be someone that his dad, former Arizona Congressman Morris Udall, once a presidential possibility in 1976 against Jimmy Carter for the Democratic Presidential nomination, could be proud of!

Guns And Congressmen: Unacceptable! :(

The news that a couple of House members plan to carry weapons on their person when they go to public events, rather than simply have increased security at these events, is a troubling development.

Do they really plan to open up fire on an assailant, while surrounded by the general public?

Security personnel in the House and Senate make it clear that it is an unwise action, and it leaves the image that guns solve problems, which they do not.

With all of the murder victims brought about by the easy accessibility of guns, should members of Congress be advocating more people carrying weapons?

Are we to be an armed society, a nation which is already the most violent in the world?

Are we to go back to allowance of gun duels, like the one which led to Vice President Aaron Burr to kill former Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton in 1804, or Andrew Jackson to kill six opponents in such gun duels?

Are we to go back to the era of armed members of Congress before the Civil War, and have a Congressman, Preston Brooks, assault Senator Charles Sumner of Massachusetts, with a cane, putting him in the hospital for two years of recovery, in the year 1856? There were also many threats of direct gun action on the floor of the House in the 1850s, besides this horrific event.

Members of Congress should realize they must set an example on carrying of guns, or otherwise we will have many more murders and woundings, and the society will collapse into a new civil war! πŸ™