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‘Call out racism and bigotry’

January 8, 2019

In “Roots of racism and white supremacy,” Jan. 4, Todd Peterson starts with a reference to the Left accusing President Trump of racism. The remainder is a historical look at the roll of the Democratic Party and racism in our country. While accurate in its portrayal, it stops short of the latter part of the 20th century.

A Southern Democratic President, Lyndon Johnson, managed to push through the Civil Rights Act of 1964 followed by The Voting Rights Act of 1965. At the time, he stated to his aide, Bill Moyers, “I think we just delivered the South to the Republican Party for a long time to come.” He was correct, as the segregationists of the South abandoned the Democratic Party for the Republican Party.

I do not suggest that today’s Republican Party represents that segregationist agenda of the Dixiecrats of that era. The South, in particular, and the country, in general, have progressed. However, with 953 hate groups operating in this country, we have a ways to go, requiring leadership from both parties.

As to our President, there is a reason members of White Nationalist groups have expressed their support for him. They heard him in the primaries, as well as his first two years as President, and clearly found a kindred spirit. His statement after the Charlottesville march by Klansmen and neo-Nazis that there had been an “egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides” was music to their ears!

History will look back on this period and judge us all quite harshly if we don’t call out racism and bigotry. It doesn’t have to be as flagrant as George Wallace and Strom Thurmond of an earlier time to warrant our expression of disgust. Even its more subtle forms have no place in our society!

Peter Jeffrey

Danbury

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