‘Mantle of racism’ snatched by the GOP
Racism certainly existed in the Southern branch of the Democratic party well into the 20th century, even if it is somewhat amplified in Todd Peterson’s screed in the “Where I Stand” section (“Roots of racism and white supremacy,” The News-Times, Jan. 4). Even as a boy growing up in a liberal Democratic household during the 1930s, I wondered at the strange marriage of Southern bigots and enlightened Northerners.
But Peterson would apparently like to load the sins of the fathers on their sons. That was then and this is now!
The mantle of racism was snatched by the Republican Party with the introduction of the infamous Nixon-Goldwater “Southern strategy” and is worn to this day. Abe Lincoln surely must be turning in his grave, accompanied by my revered maternal Republican grandfather and uncles.
Today, in the Trump era, could anyone in his/her wildest imagination picture the Republican party endorsing the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments? The party leader himself has suggested repealing at least part of the 14th and the party’s ubiquitous voter suppression activism makes Daniel Moynihan, he of the “benign neglect” proposal, look like a raging leftist.
Similar shifts take place in other contexts, e.g., compare the original Federalists with those taking the name later.