Mark Schenck Contributing Columnist
February 18, 2014
In a blunt assessment of race relations in the United States, Attorney General Eric Holder called the American people “essentially a nation of cowards” in failing to openly discuss the issue of race. I would gladly reply to Holders challenge by asking these questions:
Is the traditional NAACP in North Carolina being taken over by the “new progressive socialists” from the far left wing of the Democratic Party?
Case in point: North Carolina’s NAACP President Reverend William Barber II said of South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, a Republican, “A ventriloquist can always find a good dummy.”
Barber chose to use the platform of the holiday celebrating the life and work of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to attack conservatives and specifically deride the African-American Senator from South Carolina, one Tim Scott. This kind of action towards only conservative African Americans might be construed as having a pattern, being that many other conservative African Americans have been subjected to similar venomous attacks, including: Allen west, Herman Caine, Mia Love, Thomas Sowell, Condelessa Rice, Judge Clarence Thomas and others. And yet New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin, a Democrat and an African-American was convicted of 20 counts of corruption and Jesse Jackson Jr. and his wife were convicted of misappropriation of $750,000 in political funds — funds given by donors, and required by law to be used only for his campaign — and still Democrats receive little or no criticism from the NAACP. Would one-sided political party bias violate rules and regulations for a non-partisan 501-C3 organization?
At the NAACP’s Annual Convention in Orlando on July 14 and July 15, 2013, the Rev. CL Bryant commented, “As a former NAACP branch president in Garland, Texas, I was punished for my outspoken belief that as a Baptist preacher, my rights come from God, not the government. The NAACP has strayed from the principles of empowerment and opportunity.”
“We are here,” said Bryant, “to remind the leadership and the membership that the NAACP stands for the ‘advancement of colored people,’ not the ‘advancement of colored progressives.’”
There are other signs of what could be the NAACP’s growing progressivism. George Washington’s statue — a life-sized bronze likeness of the proclaimed Father of our Country — was hidden at the MLK rally at the State House Plaza in Columbia, S.C. Hidden behind a make shift box, reason given, so as not to offend anyone during an NAACP rally. After several years of trying to have it covered, the NAACP finally succeeded. During these years the Statue was left uncovered, how many complaints were received?
It may come as a surprise to many but according to many public documents, Dr. King’s Niece, Dr. Alveda King, the National Black Republican Association, the National Assembly of Black Republicans, and the National Black Republican Caucus, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a Republican.
And for the non-believers, here are the cold hard facts with no spin:
It was A. Phillip Randolph — an African American and a member of the Republican Party — who coordinated the famous “March on Washington” for King, where King gave his legendary “I Have a Dream” speech.
King, according to Frances Rice of the National Black Republican Caucus, was battling “Democrats who stood in the school house doors, turned skin-burning fire hoses on blacks and let loose vicious dogs.”
King Sr. Was a strong supporter of Richard M. Nixon.
True Black History in the Republican Party:
The Republican Party was founded in the year 1854 as the “anti-slavery party,” a party which gave us President Abraham Lincoln and subsequently the Emancipation Proclamation and the freeing of slaves. It was actually Democrats who fought the Emancipation Proclamation in order to keep African Americans in slavery.
It was the Republican Party that amended the Constitution and ended slavery with the 13th Amendment, gave them citizenship with the 14th Amendment and provided the right to vote in the 15th Amendment. In fact, Republicans passed the Civil Rights laws of the 1860s, including the Civil Rights Act of 1866 and the Reconstruction Act of 1867, and they have stood for civil rights dating all the way back to 1854.
The Democratic Party was responsible for passing Jim Crow laws and the so-called Black Civil Codes which resulted in separate drinking fountains and public spaces.
The majority of Democrats fought every Civil Rights law from the 1860s, through the 1950s and 1960s.
Even Democrat John F. Kennedy voted against the 1957 Civil Rights Act while he was a U.S. Senator, as did Sen. Al Gore, Sr. However, it was President Lyndon B. Johnson who was able to pass the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the 1965 Voting Rights Act only with help from Republican support in Congress.
Republican President Dwight D. Eisenhower appointed Supreme Court Justice Earl Warren, which resulted in the landmark Brown vs. Board of Education which ended school segregation.
Republican legislation created black colleges and universities.
According to The Fredrick Douglas Foundation, two black Republican women suffragists and one white Republican woman abolitionist founded the NAACP.
Republican Senator Everett Dirksen drafted legislation for the Civil Rights Act of 1968 which banned discrimination in housing.
President Richard M. Nixon introduced the Philadelphia Plan, the blueprint for Affirmative Action. Republican President Ronald Reagan in 1984 signed into law the holiday known as Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
One might wonder why Republicans are never recognized for any of these accomplishments. And why are Republican Conservative minorities, demonized, ridiculed, personally attacked and apparently feared by both black and white progressive socialists?
Conservatives are not to be feared. Just as their name suggests, their intent is to conserve the U.S. Constitution, as they also seek to conserve the Holy Scriptures. Conservatives believe as King, in personal responsibility, self help and a limited government. These are also some of the basic lessons of life we are taught in a strong stable home with roots in the Holy Bible.
So, during February, as we commemorate King’s birthday and Black History Month, we are proud to be members of the same party as King. May his dreams and his convictions live on forever.
Mark Schenck is chairman of the Scotland County Republican Party.