The Republican Party, Racism and the Dangerous Road They’re Taking Our Nation Down

rand-paul-teaLiving in Texas, whenever I hear someone say “racism isn’t that big of an issue anymore,” I just have to laugh.  Is it better than it was decades ago?  Of course it is.  But for someone to really believe that racism is no longer an issue in today’s society—well they’re simply naive, ignorant or both.

I wrote a piece a while back outlining what is referred to as the “Southern Strategy.”  Essentially, it was a movement in 50’s and 60’s where Republicans identified that African Americans were often voting for Democrats.  They used this as a “negative” and sought out to make white people aware of it with the hope that racism within many whites would drive them toward the party African Americans weren’t voting for—the Republican party.

Basically, “Hey look, black people are voting for Democrats and you white people don’t want to do what black people do now do you?  So vote Republican!”

It was a clear strategy that targeted racism and officially moved Republicans away from the party of Lincoln to the party which not only embraced racism—it sought it out.

Since the emergence of the tea party a few years ago, a growing portion of the Republican party has delved into the irrational and embraced some of the more radical parts of the conservative movement.

Here’s a quick run down of just a couple of key bullet points supported by most tea party Republicans:

  • Conservatism, the irreplaceable hub of our Nation, our Christian Faith, and the highest standards of western culture and technology.
  • America First: America before ANY foreign or alien influence and the removal of the United Nations from our borders. We condemn the U.N. and advocate withdrawal of the United States from membership in the U.N.
  • The Constitution Of The United States: as originally written and intended! The finest system of government ever conceived by man.
  • Free Enterprise: private property and ownership of business.
  • Positive Christianity: the right of the American people to practice the Christian Faith, including prayer in school.

Oh and on guns…

The fact is to all you government officials considering confiscating guns, what you are considering is TREASON against the Constitution and Citizens of the United States of America. 

Except—I didn’t write those talking points.  I didn’t pull them from a right-wing tea party website.

I pulled them from the Traditionalist American Knights—of the Ku Klux Klan.  I only changed one part on the first bullet point from “The white race” to “conservatism.”  And I only did that to show how easily interchangeable those two seem to be with these set of beliefs.  Everything else in bold is directly pulled from their website.

Now you can claim this article is simply “liberal propaganda,” and that’s fine.

But no rational human being who knows anything about politics can read those ideological beliefs taken directly from a KKK website and say they haven’t heard many of these right-wing tea party Republicans support nearly the exact same ideological talking points.

Heck, the tea party is built on most of them.  From their irrational paranoia about the United Nations, to the push for their brand of “Christianity” being forced on all Americans, to their rhetoric about guns and the belief in getting back to the way the “Constitution was intended.”  The tea party’s ideology is nearly a mirror image of the Traditionalist American Knights of the KKK.

Now this wouldn’t be anything worth writing about if just one issue was similar, or even a couple of talking points could be twisted to mean basically the same thing between Republicans and the KKK.

But the fact that many of these tea party Republicans are holding office and governing using these bullet points as the basis for their system of beliefs is terrifying.

Do they wear white hoods and burn crosses?  No—well at least none that I’m aware of.

They just do things like oppose affirmative action, stand against sensible immigration reform, want to build a wall between the United States and Mexico, support stricter voter ID laws (which many federal courts have found unfairly targets minorities) and have beliefs similar to those such as Senator Rand Paul who apparently believes the Civil Rights Act is unconstitutional.

Hell, after the Supreme Court struck down parts of the Voting Rights Act (well they didn’t strike them down as much as they said they needed to be updated), many southern states almost fell over themselves passing stricter voting laws that they were prevented from passing while certain provisions in the Voting Rights Act remained intact.

Oh, and let’s not forget how conservatives like to gerrymander Congressional districts to often split districts that would be controlled by minorities to create a more “white, conservative district.”  This of course, lessens minority influence in Congress by unfairly drawing districts to favor white, conservative voters.

And that’s the road Republicans are trying to take this country down.  A nation built on many of the same ideological principles ignorant hate groups like the Ku Klux Klan support.

If you doubt this example, feel free to take a look at some of the comments from conservatives following the Supreme Court striking down the Defense of Marriage Act, then compare those to the the beliefs of the sick parasites at the Westboro Baptist Church and how those people view same-sex marriage.

When you look at the facts rationally and digest exactly what they stand for, the issue becomes crystal clear.  Simply put, tea party Republicans are giving hate groups a voice in mainstream politics.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.

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  • exoraluna

    The Tea Party is full of B.S. Their party does not have legs to stand on.

    • nobody’s business

      If the Rs were smart they’d shear them off and let them stand on their own two feet. They’re not nearly as popular as all the screaming would suggest.

  • strayaway

    Under President Obama, black income, home ownership rates, and savings have declined relative to whites’. Recent polls also indicate that perceived racial relations have significantly declined since Obama became President. Considering the numbers, its surprising that racists didn’t advocate voting for Obama in 2012.

    • Amy

      citation please?

      • strayaway

        Already provided with links. Looks like my response was censored. Not related to race, but since I last posted on this thread a study showed that the 1% has been doing better, relative to working people, than during Bush’s term.

        “Research by University of California economist Emmanuel Saez shows that since the Obama recovery started in June 2009, the average income of the top 1% grew 11.2% in real terms through 2011.

        The bottom 99%, in contrast, saw their incomes shrink by 0.4%.

        As a result, 121% of the gains in real income during Obama’s recovery have gone to the top 1%. By comparison, the top 1% captured 65% of income gains during the Bush expansion of 2002-07”

  • suburbancuurmudgeon

    I’m not sure why this is such a surprise. Most of the Tea Party stalwarts are Southerners.

  • Chrysippus

    Racism is still alive and well in the South, its flames being fanned by corporations who hope to use racial hatred to better their bottom line and privatize everything for their own gain–schools, prisons, libraries–anything to make a buck.

    • pbfrank13

      Your own president and Holder continued to prosecute non-violent drug offense and depositories for most of their tenure (and continue to do so despite speeches) even in states where its legal. I bring this up because you brought up private prisons which have contracts with states and the feds to maintain a certain capacity in order to stay open. To fill those cells, they have to prosecute non-violent drug offenses which is the majority of offenses and inmates IIRC.

      Don’t be blinded by partisans and hacks, both parties are corporatist and give government granted privilege and ‘rights’ to specific companies and industries. Businesses hate real capitalism and real free markets because it forces them to compete solely on merits, rather than on buying privilege from government which literally can make or break a business.

      • louis

        Boom goes the dynamite. What you said is 100% accurate. both parties are in bed with the same people. the dems have figured out that if they pretend to not be, they will get the vote. Once the rethuglicans figure this out, telling them apart will be difficult.Obama sucks, and has lied and gone back on major promises just like every Rep. elected. In front they are divided, behind closed dorrs they are almost identical as far as harming the country and middle class/lower class.

      • 80sretrodude

        No President is perfect, and NO President will hold every campaign promise. However, both parties are NOT the same whatsoever.

  • Matthew Reece

    And how many progressive liberal talking points are in agreement with those of dictators who murdered millions of their own people?

    • Michael

      I’m going to go out on a limb here and say probably quite a few. At least many as there are analogs for conservative talking points. It is truly frightening how even the best, most positive ideas can be perverted within a structure of hatred and control. Many times it isn’t the idea, but the execution and the context that are evil.

  • Jaye

    Democrats have reached a new low. Comparing rights for freedom as being racist because the KKK believed in similar rights? No contest. You’re going to have to do better than that. This was just about as fake as that 11 minute bashing of “racist” Alex Jones on MSNBC the other day.

    • 80sretrodude

      And Republicans haven’t? All those signs screaming “Go back to Kenya!”, spending millions looking for Obama’s birth certificate, and stubbornly proclaiming to not work with him on any issues because your party was too busy throwing a fucking temper tantrum isn’t LOW? Saying that legitimate rape has a way of shutting down the female body isn’t LOW? Wow.

  • JR

    So the Klan believed in free enterprise and positive Christianity so anyone who believes the same is complicit in their crimes? Please tell me, am I allowed to enjoy Snow White with a clean conscience since it was Hitler’s favorite movie?

  • bullshirt

    I think the author of this article is forgetting one thing. The republican party was originally founded on one core principle – to abolish slavery. It was in fact the first republican president Abraham Lincoln who made this happen. But the democratic party would follow shortly after with a majority in congress to pass what is now referred to as the Jim Crow Laws. These laws remained in effect until Republican President Ronald Reagan championed the Civil Rights for minorities. It is the Democratic party that has its roots in racism and not the republican party. You may want to do some fact checking before publishing slander.

    • 80sretrodude

      Get a clue. The Democrats of yesteryear are the same as the current GOP/teabaggers. The parties have switched sides. Tell me- how many progressive liberals have you ever seen at a KKK rally? NONE. Yet, I would put a $100 bill down that virtually EVERYBODY at a KKK rally votes Republican. Nice try but epic fail.

    • Grannysmovin

      What you are forgetting is the Democratic party evolved and saw the indecency of what they supported. What is the excuse of the Republican Party’s regression? Part of the problem with the Republican Party is they want to live in the past and do not want to embrace thee 21st century and move forward.