A pretty amazing statement (and not in a good way) from New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who made an argument against a measure legalizing gay marriage by comparing it to the civil rights movement — and ended up saying that the civil unrest of the 1950s and 60s could have been avoided by letting states vote on whether African Americans should have human rights.
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie says the turmoil of the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 60s could have been avoided, had states simply put African-Americans’ rights and integration to a vote.
“People would have been happy to have referendum on civil rights rather than fighting and dying in the streets in the South,” Christie said on Wednesday.
Christie was comparing the civil rights movement to the fight for same-sex marriage, calling for a referendum on gay marriage in New Jersey, rather than the passage of marriage equality by the legislature.
This is Ron/Rand Paul’s argument against the Civil Rights Act, of course, and it comes from some kind of wingnut fantasy version of the civil rights struggle that’s exactly opposite from reality. The entire reason for the violence and civil disobedience was because those Southern states were allowed to vote on rights for black people, and they voted NO. This was the era of Jim Crow laws. If African Americans had just sat back and let these states hold referendums on it, there’d still be segregated lunch counters today in Alabama.