Cain Turns History Upside Down

herman cainHerman Cain’s run for president has sparked new interest in his book, They Think You’re Stupid: Why Democrats Lost Your Vote and What Republicans Must do to Keep It.

Cain is especially frustrated that most blacks are still Democrats. He claims liberal Democrats are conning them.

Cain says he is a conservative who “won’t stay on the Democrat plantation.” He disses liberals as “slave-catc­hers of black people.”

Cain says liberal Democrats have foisted “economic slavery” on African Americans and the rest of the body politic just as conservative, white supremacist Democrats of old fastened shackles on his forbears.

His slam against today’s Democrats is history turned on his head. So is his candidacy.

During the post-Civil War Reconstruction Era, the Southern Democrats said the Yankee Republicans were exploiting newly freed slaves. The GOP was pushing policies calculated not to help blacks but to foster their dependency on the party, according to the Dixie Democratic white guys.

The Republican Party had been founded up North in 1854 on anti-slavery principles. The Democrats, whose base was the slave state South, were chiefly the pro-slavery party.

Southern Democrats helped push the South out of the Union, create the Confederacy and bring on Civil War because they feared Abraham Lincoln and his “Black Republican” party would end slavery.

During Reconstruction, the Republicans welcomed African American support in the defeated Confederate states. Bi-racial Republican governments were voted into office; black Republicans were elected to state and local offices and to the U.S. House and Senate.

Unlike Cain, and almost everybody else in the current, tea party-tilting GOP, these Southern Republicans believed government could — and should — go a long way toward bettering society.

Indeed, the Southern Republicans created public school systems. They abolished property requirements for voting and expanded women’s rights.

In addition, they greatly expanded public services and boosted economic development by upgrading river, rail and road transportation. They raised taxes on rich people to help pay for such societal improvements.

The conservative white Democrats hated the Republican governments. They charged that the governments were run by crooked Yankee “carpetbaggers,” conniving white Southern “scalawags” and their African American “dupes.” The allegations were largely false and mainly rooted in racism.

Ultimately, the Democrats, who called themselves “redeemers,” stooped at nothing – including encouraging terror by the Ku Klux Klan and other groups – to destroy the GOP in Dixie. In the end, the Democrats bullied, burned, beat and murdered their way back into power.

Here and there, the Democrats found African Americans willing to run for office on the Democratic ticket. They parroted the conservative party line, railing against “big government” and claiming the white Democrats were right in saying the Republicans were scamming blacks. However, most African Americans remained true to the GOP, the party of “Lincoln and Liberty.”

The Reconstruction Era GOP included some of the most progressive and principled politicians in our history. They would be considered liberals today.

In Congress, Republicans led the fight for constitutional amendments that abolished slavery, made African Americans citizens and put the ballot in the hands of black men.

Also progressive and principled were the liberal Congressional Democrats of the 1960s. With help from moderate and liberal Republicans, they spearheaded the fight for sweeping civil rights bills aimed at ending years of Southern Jim Crow segregation and race discrimination that began after Reconstruction. The civil rights legislation was rightly hailed as a Second Reconstruction.

While liberal Republicans got Cain’s ancestors off real plantations, liberal Democrats – and the sort of Republicans generally unwelcome in today’s reactionary GOP — enabled him not only to vote but also to run for president.

Berry CraigAnyway, I doubt Cain will get very far with African Americans. Like all Americans, they vote for the party they think best represents their viewpoint. For a majority of them, that’s been the Democrats, starting with FDR and continuing down through LBJ to today. Moreover, people don’t like being portrayed – flat-out or by implication – as suckers for voting the way they do.

To be sure, there is no African American “viewpoint” any more than there is a white “viewpoint.”

But despite Cain, Reps. Alan West and Tim Scott and a handful of other outspoken black conservatives in the GOP and the media, the Republican party has become largely what the Democrats used to be: the white folks’ party with a stout base in the white South. The party of “Lincoln and Liberty” and Hiram Revels and Ed Brooke is long gone.

Berry Craig


  1. LD says

    @BC Cain’s got a spark of genius that’s been lacking in politicians the past 50 years. He just nailed the 13th and 14th amendments dead center on the issue of slavery, and you are saying what about his credibility? He also recently correctly identified AND clarified the issues with Islam. This individual is awake, which I am sure this is a problem for your LGBT community. Personally, I rate him highly along with Ron Paul, and I am hoping they will share the ticket, because we desperately need intelligence in the White House at this time.

  2. in_awe says

    Thank professor for the history lesson. You managed to leave out the most recent chapters where Democrat policies and entitlement programs reversed much of the economic advances African Americans made through the late 1950’s and into the mid-1960’s. Nuclear families were the norm and educational achievement among the youth was heartening. LBJ’s Great Society started a decades long downward spiral that continues to today.

    When will current day Democrats hold the teachers unions responsible for the abysmal schools that are failing minority youth? With sky high dropout rates and underachievement, blacks today are less ready for the workforce and economic self-sufficiency than ever. Most of the cities with the worst economic condition have been run by Democrats for decades. When will black Democrats hold these failed Democrat politicians to account?

    Cain is right – the Democrat Party has sold the African American community political crack, promising a high when it is election time but always leaving the community to decay afterward.

    • LD says

      Amen to that! I know and trust Ron Paul, but Cain IS making his way to the top of my list. He’s sharp, and we need that in the White House.

      Here’s a peek at the Neo occult protocol to help clarify how this entity has snaked it’s way into the mainstream of American politics.

      Individuals who subscribe to the occult protocol: 1) make extensive use of the double bind and are charismatic and paradoxical (BC?), 2) posture extreme prejudice which appears to circumvent the rule of law, 3) will exaggerate circumstances throwing militancy at issues having very little relevance and de-emphasizing critical ones, 4) perpetrate deadly sabotage involving destruction of property, assassinations and occult rendition, and 5) flare vehemently in forward flight when pressed with reality.

    • Don Duitz says

      To LB: I appreciate reality as much as you but, unfortunately yours is jaundiced against rules of society that allow for everyone to have a place. Not everybody is as smart as you. The other side is that smart people do utterly inhuman things.
      To in_awe: If pricing college out of the range of most poor people and African Americans is your idea then the party for you is the GOP. But, don’t con us with the idea that they give a damn about anybody but the elite rich citizens of which most blacks are not welcome. Talk about Uncle Tom; Thomas is the perfect example of their hypocrisy.
      To Barry Craig: Right on man! Unfortunately, passion rules intellect. THEY can’t even understand that there are many shades of color. Color theirs bleak.

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