Proudly Celebrating Black History Month
By Guest Columnist Nancy Churchill
Since February is Black History Month, I want to take a moment to celebrate the Republican tradition of supporting liberty, equality and prosperity for ALL people, regardless of skin color. We are the party of freedom and social justice. We strongly reject racial superiority and support harmony between all races. We see all people as equal participants of our great human race, and embrace our shared humanity.
The Republican party was founded in 1854 as a coalition opposing the extension of slavery into western territories. The Republican’s goal in 1860 was not to abolish slavery in the South right away, but rather to prevent its westward expansion, which they feared would lead to the domination of slaveholding interests in national politics. In the 1860 election, a split between Southern and Northern Democrats over slavery propelled the Republican Lincoln to victory, although he won only around 40 percent of the popular vote (bit.ly/3Gr9Seh).
An important voice in the fight against slavery was the great Frederick Douglass. Author K.Carl Smith compares Douglass’ personal qualities to those of biblical characters. Like Joseph, who was sold into slavery and later became the second-in-command of Egypt, Douglass was born into slavery and later served as an advisor to five U.S. Presidents.
Like Moses, who liberated the Israelites from Egyptian slavery, Douglass fought to liberate blacks from slavery by agitating President Lincoln. Like Paul, who wrote the majority of the New Testament and composed letters that changed the world, Douglass authored three books and wrote thousands of articles, speeches and editorials which transformed the nature of politics in America.
Like Jesus, who forgave those who nailed him to the cross, Douglass forgave his slave masters and dedicated his life for the liberation of all people (amzn.to/3skvDYm). Frederick Douglass was a dedicated Republican: “I am a Republican, a black, dyed in the wool Republican, and I never intend to belong to any other party than the party of freedom and progress.” (bit.ly/3gJFkKF)
Over the course of the Civil War, persuaded by Douglass and other voices for the freedom movement, Lincoln and other Republicans began to see the abolition of slavery as a strategic move to help them win the war. Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863, and by war’s end, the Republican majority in Congress would spearhead the passage of the 13th Amendment, which abolished slavery.
After the Civil War, the Republican Party fought to protect the rights of African Americans. Radical Republicans in Congress passed legislation protecting the rights of blacks, including civil rights and voting rights (for black men). These Republican Reconstruction policies would solidify racist white Southerners’ loyalty to the Democratic Party for many decades to come (bit.ly/3Gr9Seh). As a native of Tennessee, I can clearly recall the racism and segregation that was still entrenched in the South in the early sixties. Court-mandated segregation in the seventies finally changed many of those attitudes, and today the South is the most racially integrated society in our country, as well as the most Republican region in the nation. I’m proud of the way Southerners embraced social change, and learned from the mistakes of the past to create a beautiful and prosperous colorblind society. We took Dr. Martin Luther King’s dream of judging others by the content of their character and etched it into our hearts and regional psyche. Today’s Democratic leaders are seeking to take us back to an earlier age of overt racism, slave-owner paternalism, segregation and race riots. The Marxist-progressives currently controlling the Democratic party can ONLY see race, and they see it as a tool to achieve power. They care nothing for the impact of their policies on people of color.
Today’s Democratic leaders use the toxic and racist teachings of Critical Race Theory to declare math is racist! They ban letter grades for university students! They promote “learned experience” over applying effort towards discovering new ideas and growing in knowledge. They are dooming an entire generation of students to mathematical illiteracy and the personal poverty that comes from mental poverty.
Can today’s Democratic party be redeemed? Yes, if good, rational, traditional Democrats get involved in their party and fight for it’s heart and soul, precinct by precinct. I realize many of my friends and neighbors who have always voted Democratic did not understand the true history of their party. If you love your party, get involved in your local party and fight for it! However, if you believe the party of John F. Kennedy cannot be recovered, then you are welcome to join the #WalkAway movement and vote Republican.
Today, as in the days of Frederick Douglass and Lincoln, Republicans are the party of racial harmony and equality, of freedom and progress, of education and opportunity! We oppose the racial superiority of any race. We proudly celebrate Black History Month and our powerful role in Emancipation and social progress.
Nancy Churchill is the state committeewoman for the Ferry County Republican Party. She may be reached at DangerousRhetoric@pm.me. The opinions expressed in Dangerous Rhetoric are her own.