Black and White: Little-Known Facts About Race Relations in American History

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Having lived in the past month both in a city with a radical BLM-touting Democrat mayor and on a campus where Confederates are as common as weeds, I have become increasingly tired of hearing the same old lies about race relations in America from both sides.  Whether you wish that the Democrat Confederates had won the Civil War, or you think that America was systemically racist from its inception and therefore evil, or are simply a normal, average American with common sense and a love for your country, you have probably been told quite a few lies or simply had significant facts withheld from you concerning historical American race relations.  This article is my effort to set forth these neglected but important facts that every American ought to know.

1. George Washington’s revolutionary army was fully racially integrated.  There were no “black regiments,” no segregation.  One of Washington’s most elite, effective, and highly-trained regiments was called the “Immortals.”  They were from Maryland and this elite regiment was made up of black men, white men, and American Indians, all fighting side-by-side without regard for ethnicity or skin color.

2. The Founding Fathers were overwhelmingly anti-slavery—and the Constitution was intended to set up a state of affairs in the new nation wherein slavery would pass away over time.  Thomas Jefferson, himself a slave owner, tried to include an anti-slavery passage in the Declaration of Independence, but pressure from a few of the states which relied economically on slavery caused him to remove it.  Jefferson, as well as fellow slave-owner George Washington, continued to decry slavery throughout their lives, however.  Washington was so convicted of slavery’s evil that he even tried to sell off his beloved Mt. Vernon plantation, so that he would be forced to free the slaves, and when that scheme didn’t succeed he put it in his will that his slaves were all to be freed after his death. During the Constitutional Convention, the abolitionists’ efforts to enshrine an explicit condemnation of slavery were frustrated, because three states (including Georgia) demanded slavery be kept in return for other concessions. Though unhappy with this, abolitionists took comfort in the fact that the Constitution abolished the slave trade after 1800 (the date was later moved back) and, as James Madison put it, “slaves” and “slavery” were never mentioned by name, because it would have been very “wrong to admit in the Constitution the idea that there could be property in men.”  

3. Black men could vote when the Constitution was first passed.  There were no racial limitations placed on voting eligibility in the Constitution.  In fact, as former slave and famous abolitionist Frederick Douglass later pointed out, race-based slavery could actually have been fully abolished without changing a word of the Constitution—not only because the word “slavery” never appears, but also because there are no racist tenets in it at all.  Abraham Lincoln originally used this as an argument for ending race-based slavery and giving black men equal rights with whites under the law—that, in fact, blacks had originally had equal rights at the founding of America as a nation (Abraham Lincoln: The Prairie Years by Carl Sandburg). Free black men had originally voted in the early days of American nationhood.  Unfortunately, of course, many of America’s original ideals were not carried out in practice, and in this case, were later explicitly contradicted in (state) laws.  The Democrats of Lincoln’s time, like the Democrats of our own day, were not particularly interested in America’s founding philosophy and ideals—they were more interested in whatever was convenient and economically remunerative for them at the moment. But the fact remains that the founding of America was not racist—in fact, the opposite is true.

4. The Civil War was not fought between the states’-rights-loving (or slavery-loving) South and the oppressive or federal-power-loving North.  It was fought between the slavery-adoring Democrats and the freedom-loving Republicans, who recognized that the Democrats were willing to destroy the American political philosophy itself in order to preserve what they called the “sacred institution of slavery.”  This is important to recognize because the only “system” or “institution” which was being actively racist in the Civil War was the Democrat Party.  This is not to say that every single Confederate fought because he loved slavery—but almost all of the key leaders of the Confederacy certainly thought that slavery was what they were fighting about.

One Confederate Richmond-based newspaper even indignantly spurned the suggestion that the debate was over states’ rights or anything else, saying that this took away from the “glory” of fighting for the cause of slavery, which was, naturally a “positive good,” as John Calhoun infamously put it; “WE ARE FIGHTING FOR INDEPENDENCE THAT OUR GREAT AND NECESSARY DOMESTIC INSTITUTION OF SLAVERY SHALL BE PRESERVED, and for the preservation of other institutions of which slavery is the groundwork.” James Henry Hammond agreed with this attitude in a speech and said, by enslaving those who were “black, of another and inferior race. . .(they) are elevated from the condition in which God first created them, by being made our slaves.”  Meanwhile, Alabama’s Muscogee Herald said in 1856, “Free Society! We sicken at the name. . .All the Northern men and especially the New England States are devoid of society fitted for well-bred gentlemen. The prevailing class one meet with is that of mechanics. . .and small farmers who do their own drudgery, and yet are hardly fit for association with a Southern gentleman’s body servant.”  Jefferson and Washington were right to fear the long-term effects of slavery—it had corrupted the white men in the South as well as harming the black men, slave and free (interestingly, in 1830, 3,775 black people in the South owned 12,740 slaves).  White Southerners, whether they owned slaves or not, were all perpetuating a culture of elitism and disdain for whomever was the next lowest on the social ladder.  The South had an aristocracy—an institution wholly opposed to the American belief in equality and liberty.  But the Confederates were very proud of that aristocratic society, and they themselves, as evidenced by the newspaper quote above, were the first to contradict the narrative that they had fought for states’ rights or anything other than slavery.  Certain Southern politicians were not so enthusiastic for states’ rights earlier in the 1800s when they demanded that the federal government force the state of New York to allow them to sell slaves there.

5. The Democrat Party is not and has never been the party for racial justice.  As evidenced by the information above, Democrats in the 1800s had racism as a key tenet in their party platform and set of beliefs, and that never changed.  As Dinesh D’Souza’s movie Hilary’s America describes, the 1924 Democrat Convention which nominated Franklin D. Roosevelt for president drew such huge numbers of KKK terrorists that it was nicknamed the “Klan bake.”  As late as the 1960s, President Lyndon Johnson was saying, “I’ll have those n**gers voting Democratic for 200 years.”  And let’s not even go into the fact that Planned Parenthood, the pet “charity” of the Democrat party, was founded by KKK member and Nazi-loving racist Margaret Sanger, and that Planned Parenthood even today accepts race-specific abortion donations, so you can especially fund the murder of a black baby in the womb.

We have to fight the narrative.  Know the facts, know the truth, do your own research—and don’t let them convince you of anything just because they are louder and angrier.  “Truth will ultimately prevail, when there is pains to bring it to light,” said the great George Washington—but it is up to us in a world gone mad to take the pains to bring truth to light.

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