“Jim Crow” Laws

Susan B. Anthony “Pardon” A Total Mockery And Embarrassment, And No Intelligent Woman Would See It As Excusing Trump Misogyny

One of the most preposterous and ridiculous events occurred yesterday, on the centennial anniversary of the ratification of women suffrage, the 19th Amendment.

President Donald Trump, the all time misogynist in a very public manner, “pardoned” suffragette Susan B. Anthony for her conviction in 1873, for having “illegally” voted in the Presidential election of 1872, since women were not given the suffrage until 1920.

Anthony “broke” the law in protest the fact that the 15th Amendment, added to the Constitution in 1870, gave African American men the right to vote but not women, although the right for African American men would be taken away over time in the “Jim Crow” South, until restored by the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Anthony refused to pay the fine of $100, about $2600 in modern times, and the judge did not take any action, and she never was in prison for the so called ‘violation”.

So to “pardon” her over a conviction where she did not pay the fine or go to jail is a total mockery of the idea of pardons, but Trump is infamous for that kind of ridiculous behavior!

One wonders if Trump thinks Susan B. Anthony is still alive, since he seemed to think abolitionist Frederick Douglass was “alive”, when both passed away in 1906 and 1895 respectively! But Donald Trump has no knowledge or sense of history, plus a multitude of many other areas of learning!

One can be sure neither Anthony nor Douglass would give Trump the time of day, so to speak, and would be furious with his racism and misogyny! Anthony made clear in her lifetime that she did not want a pardon, as she felt she had done nothing wrong, so this idea of a posthumous pardon is a pure joke, and historians have already deplored it as a stunt by Trump that is totally out of line!

So this attempt by Trump to try to gain African American or women in large numbers voting for him is totally delusional!

Wipe Out Memory and Statues Of Thomas Jefferson, John C. Calhoun, Jefferson Davis, Woodrow Wilson? NO WAY!

A major campaign has been mounted to “cleanse” America’s history of political leaders who were racists, people who advocated and owned slaves, and those who promoted segregation and “Jim Crow” after slavery ended 150 years ago.

So the move is on to wipe the name of various major figures off of buildings, and the removal of statues and monuments erected in their honor.

The biggest “villains” in this quest to “correct” the past are President Thomas Jefferson, Vice President and Senator John C. Calhoun, Confederate President Jefferson Davis, and President Woodrow Wilson.

There is no question that all four, and others, can be condemned for their beliefs and behaviors.

But if we are to “discipline” them, then should we NOT add eight of the other nine pre Civil War Presidents who owned slaves; and the multitude of political leaders since the end of the Civil War who promoted segregation and racist views in the century and a half since 1865?

So while we are at it, why  not wipe out all American history, instead of recognizing the sins and shortcomings  that exist, as any good history professor will do in class, including this blogger, and also point out the major contributions that these leaders had on the totality of American history?

We cannot wipe out the past, and the move to sanitize it is a massive mistake!  We need to TEACH and LEARN about it, and draw attention to it for present day political leaders, not try to make believe it never occurred in the first place!  The goal should be to demand that today’s leaders stop promoting racism, nativism, and misogyny by exposing their transgressions!

So NO, to the attempt to reconstruct history, and wipe out the past, too common, ironically, to what happens in left wing and right wing dictatorships!

Voter “Fraud”, Voter Suppression, Civil Rights, And The 26th Amendment!

We hear Republicans claim “voter fraud”, which is a total fraud in itself, as the amount of voter fraud has been shown to be something like one billion of one percent!

There is no voter fraud to speak of, and if we are going to talk about voter fraud, what about the fraud in the vote count in Florida in the Presidential Election of 2000, which benefited George W. Bush over Al Gore; and the reported voter fraud in Ohio in the Presidential Election Of 2004, which again benefited George W. Bush, this time over John Kerry?

It is a fact that only in states that are seen as in danger of turning “blue”, do we see accusations of voter fraud, to insure that a “red” state will stay “red”! So we have seen the Southern states and some Midwestern states, which have passed voter suppression laws, affecting African Americans, Latinos, poor people, the elderly, and now, even the young.

So the classic case, but not the only one, is North Carolina, which now had cut down the number of voting days before Election Day; has stopped same day registration; has decided that early voting on the Sunday before the election shall be ended (what often is the method for black churchgoers to make voting a group event); has required a state ID to vote, something many poor people cannot afford, and often have trouble getting to proper locations if they wish to buy it in person (a requirement); and now is preventing 16 and 17 year old high school students from preregistration; and not allowing college students from other states to use their college address so that they can vote in the state elections of the college or university they are attending and residing in for four or more years!

So we have a law suit against North Carolina, asserting that they are discouraging college and young voters from registering and voting, therefore trying to fix the elections, true voter fraud! And the constitutional case is the 26th Amendment of 1971, which allows 18-21 years old citizens to vote!

This is the new attempt at what used to be called “Jim Crow” laws, and the Republican Party is fully backing such denials in multiple states, right after the Supreme Court, wrongfully, weakened the Voting Rights Act of 1965, forgetting the struggles, bloodshed, and deaths suffered in the battle for voting rights. The ultimate civil right is voting rights!

What is clear is that when the states lose these battles, particularly regarding the 26th Amendment, they are guaranteeing the loss of the young vote for generations, as any intelligent young person voting for the party which worked to suppress its voting rights is as likely as “Hell Freezing Over!”

The False Voter Fraud Issue Of Republicans Challenged Head On By Barack Obama

One of the most outrageous activities of the Republican Party is its attempt to prevent people from voting by requiring all kinds of documents, and cutting voting days and hours, and refusing same day voting registration.

The GOP claim of widespread voter fraud is absolutely ridiculous, and Barack Obama took it on in a speech yesterday, at a time when the Supreme Court, Republican dominated majority, has weakened enforcement of the Voting Rights Act, just as we celebrate 50 years of the Civil Rights Act, and next year, 50 years of a now weakened Voting Rights Act, something civil rights workers died for in the early 1960s.

As Obama pointed, statistics demonstrate that between 2002 and 2005, out of 197 million votes cast, there were ONLY 40 examples of people indicted for voter fraud, a infinitesimal number, a percentage of 0.00002 percent!

For this, we need millions of African Americans, Hispanics and Latinos, elderly, poor, disabled, and young voters denied the basic right to vote?

What the Republican Party is doing in Republican controlled states with Republican legislatures and governors is against the whole concept of fairness, justice, and equality, dating back to the old Jim Crow days in the South, but now embraced in areas outside the South as well.

Abraham Lincoln is turning over in his grave as to what his party has done, a true example of their political corruption, and lack of ethics!

Conservatives Call Barack Obama First Racist President: Look In The Mirror And At History, Right Wingers!

What a preposterous statement by many people in the Right Wing of the Republican Party and the conservative movement, to call Barack Obama our first “racist” President, because of his detailed, courageous, principled statement about race yesterday before White House reporters!

What Obama said about young black men growing up in America is absolutely true, and despicable, and Obama made it clear that he had, personally, experienced the same racism, and all that talk show hosts can do is throw the appellation “racist” at the President, rather than admit the history of the country, and the reality of the profiling of blacks in 2013, along with Hispanics and Latinos as well!

And the Right Wing chooses to ignore history, probably affected by fake historian David Barton, who promotes a sanitized view of American history, and has had a dramatic effect on textbook companies, pressuring them to write myths, rather than facts, about American history!

The facts are as follows:

George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe, Andrew Jackson, William Henry Harrison, John Tyler, James K. Polk, and Zachary Taylor all owned and exploited slaves, and some of them had children with their slaves, what could be called rape situations!

Andrew Jackson and Martin Van Buren forcibly removed Native Americans, the infamous “Trail of Tears”, while in office; and William Henry Harrison, Andrew Jackson, and Zachary Taylor all gained their original fame by killing Native Americans, and bragging about it!

Andrew Johnson was probably the most outspoken racist President, and made it clear in working against the Freedmen’s Bureau continuation after the Civil War!

Ulysses S. Grant warred against Native Americans during his Presidency in a massive campaign to take away their lands!

Republican Presidents after Grant ignored violations of civil rights by Southerners, beginning with the fixed election of Rutherford B. Hayes on a promise to end military occupation of the South and let Democrats take care of their own states, and promoting racial segregation, Jim Crow laws!

Woodrow Wilson demonstrated strong racist tendencies and views during his administration, catering to the Southern Democratic heritage of his boyhood!

Many Presidents in their writings displayed racist thoughts, and some did so in speech at times, including Harry Truman, Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard Nixon, and Ronald Reagan (who talked about welfare queens).

Only since Truman has it been fashionable to be FOR civil rights, but even then, Nixon and Ronald Reagan worked against civil rights any opportunity they were given!

So we have at least 18 Presidents who were racists, or displayed racist tendencies, toward African Americans and Native Americans in different forms!

So the concept that Barack Obama is a racist for speaking up on injustices toward people of his heritage is outrageous, ridiculous, and preposterous to the extreme!

Do you hear that?—Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, Michael Savage, Ann Coulter and the rest of their ilk?

Voting Rights Act Under Review, As Arizona, Florida And Other States Show Evidence Of Voter Suppression

The Supreme Court has accepted a case on the validity of continuation of federal oversight of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, with the argument that states can handle their voting effectively, without discrimination.

Are such advocates getting high on drugs?

It is CLEAR CUT that Arizona, Florida and other states were working to discriminate against people of color and poor people in the recent election!

Florida was unable to handle its voting process expeditiously, and was abusive in cutting down days of voting from 14 to 8, thanks to the GOP legislature and Governor Rick Scott!

Arizona has still not counted all the votes, and Governor Jan Brewer and Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio are the worst abusers of voting rights, and both promote intimidation of Hispanics and Latinos, and act as if they are above the law!

Other states have promoted intimidation of Hispanics and Latinos, including Alabama specifically, and many states have promoted voter suppression laws.

How could a reasonable Supreme Court do anything other than uphold the need for continued monitoring of voting?

And yet this right wing majority on the Court could very well destroy one of the path mark pieces of legislation under Lyndon B. Johnson, and bring us back to the age of “Jim Crow”!

It i s hoped that Justice Anthony Kennedy (often the swing vote), and or Chief Justice John Roberts will join the four liberal members of the Court in upholding the continued enforcement of the Voting Rights Act. Roberts, having surprised everyone, with his decisive vote to uphold ObamaCare, hopefully will surprise us again with an open mind, and come through, even if Kennedy fails to do so.

To have advancements in American democracy endangered 50 years later is a true disgrace!

The Ides Of March: Significant In The Past And The Present!

Today, March 15, marks the anniversary of the assassination of Julius Caesar in the Roman Republic in 44 BC, so well depicted by William Shakespeare.

But in America, it is marked by the speech of President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1965, calling for the Voting Rights Act to stop discrimination in voting for African Americans in the South.

Ironically, 47 years later, we are seeing many states, primarily in the South and Midwest, trying to deny the right to vote for the elderly, college students, the poor, and minorities by onerous Voter ID requirements, in many cases for people who have voted for decades without trouble, but now are being told they cannot vote in this year’s Presidential election.

This is all designed by Republicans and conservatives in their effort to defeat President Barack Obama by any means they can find, because they do not have the issues to win the election without utilizing dishonesty. And yet they claim they are trying to prevent voter fraud, which is only a few cases in many millions, far less than even one thousandth of one percent in the past decade!

So the Obama Administration, through Attorney General Eric Holder, has brought lawsuits against South Carolina and Texas, as well as Arizona and Alabama on other issues of racial and ethnic discrimination related to voting and basic human rights. And many Midwestern and Southern states, other than those mentioned, are also setting out to abuse the Voting Rights Act, trying to take us back to the era of Jim Crow voter laws, that denied poor and minority voters their basic rights!

Also, today marks the beginning of what is seen as an end to our engagement in Afghanistan, as President Hamid Karzai is calling for Allied forces to retreat to bases, and remove themselves from Afghan villages. This is the reaction to the tragic massacre by one American soldier last week, the murder of 16 civilians, including nine children and three women and four men, as they slept in their village a mile away from an American military base; and the earlier burning of Korans by American soldiers, leading to the killing of several soldiers by Taliban terrorists.

America has been in Afghanistan more than a decade, and the war is leading to no improvement worth the continuation of the sacrifice of our troops, or those of our allies.

Afghanistan has been the doom of Alexander the Great in the ancient world; the British Empire in the 19th century; the Soviet Union in the late 20th century; and now the US and allied nations in the 21st century! It is time to expedite our exit, and just use drones and the air force against Taliban and Al Qaeda terrorists. Making Afghanistan a democracy is, sadly, a lost cause!

So March 15 past and present has significant meanings we must not forget!

Bill Clinton Reminds Us About “Jim Crow” Voting Restrictions On Blacks, Warns Against Them Returning!

Former President Bill Clinton has made a major speech criticizing Republican Governors and legislatures passing restrictions on voting rights, comparing them to the old “Jim Crow” restrictions that ruled the South for nearly one hundred years until passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

The new restrictions being promoted and put into law with the backing of Florida Governor Rick Scott, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, Ohio Governor John Kasich, and many other Republican Governors would require drivers license ID cards to vote, shorten hours and days of early voting, require college students to vote at home instead of where they live, and restrict felons who have completed their obligation to society from being able to cast their vote. The theory is that these states are trying to prevent voter fraud, which in reality, is a very slight problem historically!

This is all designed to harm groups–African Americans, Latinos, the young, and the poor–who are perceived as likely to vote for Democrats.

Clinton reminding us of “Jim Crow” should lead to law suits to stop this new limitation and discrimination of the right to vote, something supposedly overcome by Lyndon B. Johnson in the 1960s as part of his Great Society.

Somehow, we seem to repeat history’s mistakes over and over again!