The Civil Rights Act, MLK, and the GOP “Southern Strategy” Part II: The Denial
In spite of the voluminous historical documentation concerning the passage of the Civil Rights Act, and the Republican party’s ideological shift in the 1960’s from progressive to reactionary, right-wingers are actively promoting an alternative history:
First of all, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was NOT a Republican. He wrote: “I have always voted the Democratic ticket.” He did admit that he was still undecided for the 1956 election, since Eisenhower was very pro-Civil Rights. But someone who had always voted Democratic can not be described as a “Republican.” And he did recognize the difference between Democrats of the Northern region and the Southern Dixiecrats, a fine distinction that our modern-day right-wingers refuse to acknowledge.
Secondly, the GOP did NOT “pass” the Civil Rights Act while Democrats “opposed” it. Northern Democrats and Republicans alike supported the CRA while Southerners of both parties overwhelmingly rejected it. It was a regional, not a partisan issue.
Wingnuts double down:
Barry Goldwater, the Republican Senator from Arizona, voted against the CRA, yet he won the GOP nomination in 1964.
Right-wingers have published a number of articles denying that the “Southern Strategy” ever happened:
This, in spite of the documentation provided in the previous article, and the current Republicans’ behavior!
Furthermore, the denialists claim, The Civil Rights Act was an eevil Democrat plot! Teh Democrats are the “real racists” who offered “Civil Rights” and “Free Stuff” to the stupid, greedy Blah people. Lyndon Johnson was the “real racist”!
Want to fix the problems in the Black community,repeal EVERY LBJ ”The Great Society” crap that ruined the black folks Democrat=Plantation
democrat LBJ on his black welfare program “i’ll have those niggers voting democrat 4 the next 200yrs” (when blks switched) @viciousbabushka
I have searched for the source of this alleged Lyndon Johnson quote, which is all over right-wing sites. Mountain That Blogs found it in a book Inside the White House, published in 1996, full of juicy gossip about former Presidents. The source is an interview with Robert MacMillan, a steward aboard Air Force One. Amazon reviews show that it is far from objective.
Was Lyndon Johnson a racist in private life? He was a very vulgar man who exposed his penis, displayed his surgical scars, pulled his dogs up by the ears so yeah, he might have used the N-word now and then. Did he allow alleged personal racism to rule public policy? History shows that he did not. If anything, history shows that he struggled to rise above that.
Finally, if the right-wingers actually believe what they are saying and the Republicans are the true “Civil Rights fighters” while the “Democrats are the real racists!” please explain why there have been so many examples of Republicans not even bothering to pretend that they are not racist.
Abe Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, and yes Ike too, are ashamed.