Saturday, November 04, 2006
Fear, it worked back in 1861 and it's working again...
We Americans need to get over this mentality that suggests that the other (in this case gays and lesbians, illegal immigrants, and African-Americans) is going to come into your homes and rape and kill you. We must seem like a cowardly people, so afraid of the big, bad terrorist that we are willing to compromise our civil liberties in order to receive protection (non-existent from the GOP, but that’s for another blog post). We are so afraid of so-called illegal immigrants crossing our borders, invading our towns, terrorists coming over to blow up our petting zoos in Indiana, and even worse, TEH GAYS brainwashing our children and forcing them into homosexual orgies and Bacchanalias. It is my intention in this blog to hopefully argue that the same irrational appeals to fear are being perpetrated on the American voter today and that the GOP does not really believe in those appeals but are finding them useful in trying to keep power.
Corker had been trailing in the polls to Ford until that FUCKING NRCC ad aired, you know the one with the seductive scantily-clad woman winking at Harold Ford. Ever since, he has been rising in the polls and now enjoys a slim lead over Ford. If Corker pulls out a victory, we can thank this damn ad that plays to a common theme that has been found throughout Southern history, the fear of the other, in its case, the black person, whether slave or free, a fear that has led to 3029 lynchings of African-Americans in the former Confederate states, an astounding 87.9% of the total in just 11 states, will rightfully be blamed for snatching victory from the jaws of defeat.
Rewind back to 1861. The DEEP South is burning with the fire of secession.
The Deep South knows that they would not stand a chance without those states for If they could get the Upper and Middle South, states like
Charles B. Dew, a Southern-born historian argues persuasively that it was racism and the appeal to fear that got the Upper South fired up from lukewarm support to actual secession. He argues that the direst specter that any Southerner could imagine was the slaves rising up and engaging in interracial sex with their daughters! Dew argues that this was the most dire threat of all as the chastity of their daughters was what the plantation owners cherished the most (Dew 79). Contrast that to the denial of neo-Confederate groups who deny that slavery had anything to do with what they call the “War of Northern Aggression.” Contrast that to the neo-Confederates who deny that racism is a problem today and that it IS a problem.
I’ll let the primary documents and Dew speak for themselves…for they can say it better than I can.
But in the South, where in many places, the African race largely predominates, and as a consequence the two races would be continually processing together, amalgamation or the extermination of the one or the other would be inevitable. Can Southern men submit to such degradation and ruin? God forbid that they should.
But it is said that there are many constitutional conservative men at the North who sympathize with and battle for us.
- Letter of Stephen F. Hale, commissioner from
Alabamato Governor Magoffin of , 12/27/1860 Kentucky
They have demanded, and now demand, equality in the honors and emoluments of office, equality in the social circle, equality in the rights of matrimony. The cry has been, and now is, “that slavery must cease, or American liberty must perish,” that “the success of Black Republicanism is the triumph of anti-slavery,” “a revolution in the tendencies of the government that must be carried out.”
- Address of William L. Harris, commissioner from
, to the Georgia General Assembly, Dec. 17, 1860. Mississippi
Leroy Pope Walker, Alabama’s commissioner to
and subsequently the first Confederate secretary of war, predicted that in the absence of secession all would be lost – first, “our property,” and “then our liberties,” and finally the South’s greatest treasure, “the sacred purity of our daughters.” Tennessee
- Dew, Apostles of Disunion, pg. 79
Same strategy except less graphic and less mention of rape, but the same topic of “miscegenation” is there. The GOP knows that showing Ford and bringing up the fear of blacks raping whites is overtly racist and would be too obvious for our society today, which is reluctant to acknowledge our racist past but is just in denial today, believing that racism is a thing of the past and limited to only the KKK and other Neo-Nazi groups. However, they can imply that Ford, a black man is secretly lusting after white women and they know that some of their hardcore racist hick base will fall for that again unfortunately. I find it sad that perhaps the ad is working as Corker has opened up a slight lead in the polls and signs show it to be leaning Republican as of today. Of course this is not to excuse Ford, I thought his pandering to his base was despicable with respect to the
I’m arguing that the GOP is using the same strategy here as right-wingnuts did in 1861. Does the GOP actually believe their inane arguments just as implausible as the brutal orgy of rape the secession commissioners conjured up in the
Same arguments apply here to gay marriage. Legalize gay marriages and TEH GAYS will be emboldened! They are trying to brainwash our children by sending subliminable (haha) maessages to our children attending our schools. Their message of tolerance is just a Trojan Horse in which lies the true, dire, sinister message that children SHOULD accept homosexuality and even become homosexuals themselves. So let us compare the message…Not seceding will mean amalgamation and miscegenation and interracial rape…fast forward 145 years and now it’s homosexuals want to convert our children into becoming homosexuals! Isn’t there a common theme here? Why did Ford feel the need to pander when it came to the
Compare the quotes of the secession commissioners to the quotes the Religious Right and the extreme right leaders of our generation say against our GLBT brothers and sisters…
"This is ultimately about the protection of America's youth from such groups as NAMBLA and militant homosexuals who seek to lower the age of consensual sexual intercourse between homosexual men and young boys to the age of fourteen" - Charles Socarides, on the board of NARTH and the other top 'ex-gay' psychiatrist, from NARTH's Web site, http://www.narth.com/docs/1995papers/socarides.html
Gays want access to children
"Gaining access to children has been a long-term goal of the homosexual movement." - "Homosexual Activists Work to Normalize Sex With Boys," Family Research Council publication, July 1999, http://www.frc.org/misc/bl057.pdf
Cannot this argument be compared to the OMG Slaves want access to our daughters and race mixing will ensue if we don’t secede from the
Gays want to give churchgoers AIDS
"[Homosexuals]want to come into churches and disrupt church services and throw blood all around and try to give people AIDS and spit in the face of ministers." Pat Robertson, 700 Club, 1/18/95 - People for the American Way Web site, http://www.pfaw.org/issues/right/rtvw.antigay.shtml
Compare this quote to John Smith Preston’s speech claiming that
I find it truly sad that the GOP has to use race-baiting especially in the South to “win.” It just shows that they truly have no ideas and that they are the party with no ideas other than tired, battle-tested, battle-failed ideas such as “STAY THE COURSE,” tax cuts for the rich that fail to prop up a sluggish economy, BAN GAY MARRIAGE (gets old), and deregulation of everything. I find it sad that Corker has to express faux outrage over the ad and Mehlman suddenly claims he is impotent and cannot do anything against an ad “independently produced,” INDEPENDENT of the NRCC that paid for them. I find it sad that the party which started off with some rather progressive ideas such as the progressive income tax they passed during the war has degraded into a shadow of its former self.
Except, things are different now. This blatant play to racism and the faux outrage make it seem that the Southern Strategy is evolving into even more of a giant shell game. Show the racist ads but condemn them at the same time and blame them on some independent contractor. It’s always someone else’s fault with the Republicans because the Party of Personal Responsibility is always taking the awesome responsibility of shifting responsibility away from itself. We’re not racist, the ad was an independent expenditure! We had no control over it even though we paid for it. Besides, it’s all fun and games! It’s all satire. This is the new Republican line when it comes to this racist ad and deceptive mailers in
FEAR, it’s the only weapon that the GOP has left, it’s just too bad that some people are just so fucking scared that they will believe anything fearmongerers have to say.
Dew, Charles. Apostles of Disunion: Southern Secession Commissioners and the Causes of the Civil War. (
McPherson, James M. Ordeal by Fire: The Civil War and Reconstruction (
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