Brace yourself–you’re about to witness a mighty good example of PC Judo from the fabled conservative institution National Review on the topic of Jim Crow and the Democrat Party.
PC Judo, of course, is Richard Spencer’s term for when conservatives affirm and repurpose the tenets of political correctness against their left-wing opponents.
In the latest edition of this tactic, NR contributor John Fund tries to “set the record straight” on Jim Crow. And by setting the record straight, he means bringing up the cliché that Democrats are the real racists:
Even as the nation celebrates the passage of the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act, some liberals are using the occasion to bash Republicans as inheriting the legacy of Jim Crow — ignoring the fact that a higher percentage of Republicans in Congress voted for the Civil Rights Act than did Democrats…
The American Civil Rights Union, a conservative group that has filed suit in favor of voter-integrity measures, has had enough of such tactics. Its leaders include former attorney general Ed Meese and former Ohio secretary of state Ken Blackwell. ACRU has just published a booklet on the real history of Jim Crow. Available for free at TheTruthAboutJimCrow.org, it sets the record straight on a hidden racial past that many Democrats would rather see swept under the carpet. While Richard Nixon’s “Southern Strategy” is constantly referenced in the media as a tool to attract white voters, less well remembered are Woodrow Wilson’s segregation of the entire federal civil service; FDR’s appointment of a member of the KKK to the Supreme Court; John F. Kennedy’s apathy toward civil-rights legislation; and the rise of Robert Byrd, a former member of the KKK, to the post of Democratic leader in the Senate in the 1980s.
We’re already beginning to see the winning strategy of an average conservative piece that aims to teach the “real history” of Jim Crow to non-White voters…through National Review‘s nearly all-white readership.
But you know how Fund mentioned that the Democrat Party was ok with former KKK members representing the party in the Senate? Betcha didn’t know that the liberal KKK was the “paramilitary wing” of the Democrats!
But the political enforcement of Jim Crow was entirely in Democratic hands. The Ku Klux Klan functioned as the paramilitary wing of the Democratic party, and it was used to drive Republicans out of the South after the Civil War. Before he took up the cause of civil rights as president, Lyndon Johnson acting as Senate majority leader blocked the GOP’s 1956 civil-rights bill, and gutted Eisenhower’s 1957 Civil Rights Act. Democratic senators filibustered the GOP’s 1960 Civil Rights Act.
The horror of the Democratic Party.
Even though the entire essay is trying to “rectify” historicy in a misguided appeal to Blacks, the author admits than even that won’t get them to vote Republican:
Of course, scoring historical points shouldn’t take front place in today’s civil-rights efforts. Conservative efforts to reach out to African Americans must begin with appreciation and recognition of African Americans’ history of subordination and oppression. As author David Frum put it: “Until conservatives and Republicans, who are of course predominantly non–African American, can sincerely convey that what was done to black people in this country is as real to us as it is to them . . . a relationship that is needed by both cannot begin to develop.”
And what are those issues that will get the non-White vote?
In terms of issues, conservatives must continue to point out the real-life consequences to minorities of today’s failed liberal policies. In Monday’s Wall Street Journal, former Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa recounted how “deeply troubled” he is over the refusal of many teachers’ unions to embrace educational reform. “At a time when only one in 10 low-income children is earning a four-year college degree and two out of three jobs of the future will require one, change is needed,” he wrote.
Apparently the dreaded menace of teachers’ unions unites every race, even a racial purveyor like Villaraigosa. And so with all of the techniques of PC Judo used (minuse abortion=black genocide), can the author hope that the Democrats will one day carry the baggage of racism like the Republicans have carried the baggage of Joe McCarthy?
As liberal black blogger Jamelle Bouie points out, the original editors of National Review and many other supporters of the Republican Party were strongly in favor of segregation, thus negating the point that only those damn Democrats supported it. He easily eviscerates the rest of Fund’s points and comes to the obvious conclusion that Blacks and other non-Whites vote Democrat not because of historical censorship, but because they like the policies the Democrat Party offers them.
But Bouie fails to mention that the point of this and other instances of PC Judo is not to convert minorities to conservatism—it’s to reassure White conservatives that they’re not racist. Saying that Democrats were the ones supporting Jim Crow and the KKK allows Republicans to pat themselves on the back for beingon the “right side of history.” They can feel easy when liberal sites criticize the tea party for being too White and they can always employ the line “The KKK was the paramilitary wing of the Democrat Party” for special occasions of comment warfare.
Like how White liberals will congratulate themselves for listening to Black music and having a token Black friend, conservatives will read and write articles such as this Fund’s post to reassure themselves that they aren’t racist.
But with the ever increasing predominance of political correctness and the smearing of everything White as racist, how long will they be able to delude themselves into thinking they were on the “right side of history”?