Racism as defined in the Tenth Edition of the Webster Collegiate Dictionary is “a belief that race is the primary determination of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race.” Quite a thought provoking definition. But Americans have long lived in a fog of convenient historical ignorance. I am now compelled to challenge the current insidious narrative that racism is a predominant conservative sickness; and being liberal or a Democrat automatically absolves you of any prejudicial leanings. After all; you are better than that. As Bette Davis once said: hold tight you’re in for a bumpy ride.
Branding anyone a “racist” is the trump card (pardon the pun) of left leaning activists, the main stream media, and the majority of the Democratic Party. The “red” racist card is readily whipped out of their back pocket like a referee at a World Cup soccer game; dragging through the mud those in disagreement. This “drop of a hat” labeling has watered down real bigotry into an annoying cliche’. It diminished the pain of prejudice and poked the eye of those who walked the walk and talked the talk. I was recently labeled a racist because I opined that violence in the United States had increased considerably under Mr. Obama’s watch. I was of the opinion that Charlottesville should not have come as a surprise because violence had found haven under the nebulous cloud of social justice. I also stated that the first amendment had been hijacked by anarchy sans consequence from either Mr. Obama or his Department of Justice. Violent activist groups were given a pass to burn and pillage in pseudo justification of a police brutality narrative which in many cases was unsubstantiated or blatantly false. Ferguson comes to mind. Forensics debunked the “hands up don’t shoot” myth, but the violence continued and eventually organizations like Black Lives Matter were guests at the White House. So why are we so surprised that White Supremacists neo-Nazi pinheads became emboldened to terrorize? I do not take being called a racist mildly. So I decided to go on a fact finding mission. Who are the White Supremacists and when did the perception of linkage to conservatives take hold? How factual is this perception? How “snow white” are liberals?
I researched unbiased historical fact by staying away from obvious conservative leaning websites. “Founded in 1866, the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) extended into almost every southern state by 1870 and became a vehicle for white southern resistance to the Republican Party’s Reconstruction-era policies aimed at establishing political and economic equality for blacks. Its members waged an underground campaign of intimidation and violence directed at white and black Republican leaders.” (http://www.history.com/topics/ku-klux-klan)
That took my brain out for a spin. Powerful myth busting words. What do you know? The Republican Party was victimized by the KKK.The KKK did not rest with going only after the Republicans: they added Catholics, Jews, and immigrants to their list of victims. The group was founded in Pulaski, Tennessee by a few confederate veterans as a social club. The first two words of their name were derived from the Greek “kyklos” or circle. The first Grand Wizard was Nathan Bedford Forrest, a Confederate General. The irony is that KKK insurgence coincided with post-Civil War Reconstruction; a Republican initiative to pass the Reconstruction Act giving “equal protection” of constitutional rights to former slaves. It was the pre-cursor to the 14th amendment. The KKK continued its violence targeting Republicans and Republican voters who were split between whites and freed blacks. In the meantime, other supremacy groups joined the KKK, bringing the number to approximately four million country wide; this was an attempt to reverse the Reconstruction Act. But hard-core Republicans went a step further and enacted the KKK Act which labeled certain hate crimes as federal offenses. President Grant suspended habeas corpus and individuals suspected of KKK terror were arrested without being formally charged. The Southern Democrats were furious. The KKK had politicians and law enforcement in its back pocket and the KKK Act cramped their style. The KKK eventually found haven in the South; which from 1876 onward became the Democratic Party’s stronghold. Moving forward to 1924 and to the Democratic Convention in Madison Square Garden, New York City. Chaos was not only attributed to the 103 ballot deadlock between William Gibbs McAdoo and Alfred E Smith; but the hundreds of KKK knights who attended as delegates making sure that a platform to condemn them would not pass. It did not. The convention was later referred to as the Klanbake. (Wills, Matthew. May 11, 2016. A Really Contested Convention. The 1924 Democratic Klanbake.)
This little history lesson has a poignant point: there is a skeleton in every political closet. The liberal Democrats seemed to have been suffering from political racist amnesia. The ever incessant annoying back patting of their tolerant elite is short on substance and heavy on myth and hypocrisy. Arrogantly thinking that they have a monopoly on tolerance is laughable at best. Going back to my close encounter with the racist card: would I have been called a racist had Mr. Obama been white Anglo-Saxon? Am I now prohibited from criticizing anyone unless they are Caucasian? I had high expectations of Mr. Obama and his administration. I expected a crack down on gang violence in black neighborhoods like Chicago; a better economy for the middle class; a transparent strong leadership; a viable attempt at improving the Middle East, and finally; a unified country. Chicago’s city’s poor and mostly black neighborhoods have become war zones. Weekend shootings often kill innocent bystanders and sometimes kids. All African Americans. Black neighborhoods left to rot. In a predominant Democratic city and government: where is the race card? Where is Black Lives Matter? I guess black lives in Chicago do not matter that much. The middle class under Mr. Obama was economically forgotten and frustrated with wages that for eight years remained stagnant. Jobs were so uncertain that most people gave up looking. Where was the tolerant social justice crew? Four Americans were murdered in Benghazi by terrorist thugs; and we are still debating where to place blame. It is definitely not a video. Where is the indignation that all American lives matter? The IRS targeted conservative groups without a “smidgen” of accountability! Some of those subpoenaed did not even see fit to appear before Congress. Where was the transparency? An imaginary red line in the Syrian sand remained just as imaginary as we watched thousands fleeing that region toward European shores. Most dying in their futile attempts. Finally: our country slowly and methodically became polarized and divided. Either no one noticed or very few cared.
The latest fracas in Virginia should not have taken us by surprise. The gradual escalation in violence was left unchecked and unhindered for eight years. No country’s history is exempt from its past, and injustices should never be forgotten. But social justice should not be an excuse for anarchy. Whichever side of freedom one opts to stand; violence for the sake of political narrative should never be condoned. Under a very nebulous umbrella of anti-police brutality and racism, organizations like Black Lives Matter were permitted to spread militant anti-police rhetoric that included encouraging harm to law enforcement. Cops were intentionally targeted and killed. Charming. What added to the vile of anti-law enforcement rhetoric was the Mayor of New York City’s open disdain toward his own police force, the best in the country if not the world. This political pinhead proudly owned up to the fact that he warned his son to be vigilant of police because his skin color would place him in danger. Double charming. Mr. Obama’s administration dismissed the violence and the blatant over-the-top hatred talking points of Black Lives Matter and their supporters. Eventually he welcomed them to the White House. That was the green light. This “unspoken” endorsement if not encouraging rioting it sure condoned dangerous hateful rhetoric. The battle cry was racism. But the intention was to stifle opposition, free thought, opinion, and traditional ideology. These protests had very little to do with racism and more to do with destroying long-held American heartland values.
The United States has reached an impasse. Racial relations have gone back to pre-60’s days. However, blame must also lie with those who stoke the fire of hatred. Two certifiable charlatans come to mind: Al Sharpton and Maxine Waters. Two loud mouthed unpleasant individuals who encourage malcontent and provide very few solutions. They make a good living on the backs of their own people providing very little respite. Both self-centered political hacks that contribute nothing to improve the lives of African Americans but exploit them for personal political gain. Continually perpetuating the victim narrative to increase political dependence and votes. That is a fundamental aspect of racism. Targeting those who they think are intellectually inferior. If I were African American I would be insulted. Al and Maxine are not unique to the quagmire of racial hypocrisy. Inane white privilege talking points has given rise to ignorance and intolerance seen only in third world countries. Re branding ethnicity in a feeble attempt at self-worth. So, I ask again: why are we so surprised that Charlottesville happened?
Charlottesville is beyond the KKK. It is beyond protesting. It is beyond free speech. Charlottesville was empowered by years of permissive violence and by those who cry “racist” in their sleep. It was a feeble attempt at asserting power over others. But the KKK was emboldened by years of condoned violence. The KKK does not have a monopoly on hatred. Have you spoken to the Black Panthers lately? Our polarized nation has now pitted friend against friend, relative against relative, and neighbor against neighbor. Politics is no longer ideology or opinion. It is now personal. The person who called me racist was a friend; or so I thought. She did not want discourse or opinion, and she definitely did not want to discuss; she wanted to judge. I appreciate her strong convictions: if only she appreciated and respected mine. In her eyes I was a racist by default: a traditionalist-conservative. That was my downfall. I was immediately placed on the same platform as the KKK. This is the new intolerable America. Charlottesville: why are we so surprised that it happened?