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Brad Mason @AlsoACarpenter
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I'm definitely a fan of @KevinMKruse and am very thankful for this thread. But, as a non-historian, I would like to offer a little push-back on each of these points, if I may. Not in defense of @RealCandaceO (please no!), but in defense of criticizing Dems, LBJ, and Sanger. 1/
2/ Dr. Kruse rightly notes that the first Klan was almost entirely Democrat, but seems to want to make the Second Klan appear to be some sort of 50/50 R and D. The photo he critiqued was indeed a Chicago meeting, which more than likely contained majority Republicans.
3/ During the “Great Migration,” Northerners reacted in violence and rage to the incoming millions and the North was certainly Republican. But the Second Klan, just like the first, was still largely a Southern Democrat organization.
4/ The Second Klan was founded by Atlanta Democrat William J. Simmons in 1915 and was aggressively marketed by Democrats Mary Elizabeth Tyler and Edward Young Clarke, whom Simmons had employed for the task.
5/ Membership soared quickly and was marketed as holding no political party affiliation, hoping that both parties would vie for their support. But I don’t think anyone questions that the large majority of members were in fact Democrats, and high-level political support was ...
6/ ... almost entirely Democrat (see Southern governors) and its highest level ardent opponents included Republican presidents Warren Harding and Calvin Coolidge, who were in office from 1921-1929, the high period of the Second Klan.

Otherwise I agree w/ Kruse, a real historian
7/ Second, Dr. Kruse also rightly debunks the supposed Lyndon B. Johnson quote. Johnson undoubtedly was instrumental in pushing and passing the Civil Rights legislation of 1964, and even more importantly, the 1965 Voting Rights Act, which had a much greater impact toward ...
8/ ... Black American empowerment than even the 1964 CR. (To Dr. Kruse’s point, 82% of Republican House and Senate voted for the latter and 78% of Democrats—roughly even. He rightly captures a lot of the BS on all of these subjects.)

So far so good for LBJ.
9/ But his real racist assimilationism began with his pivot to Law & Order. In his State of the Union address in 1968, following a period of national “race” violence, he declared, “the American people have had enough of rising crime and lawlessness.”
10/ He then appointed the Kerner Commission, made up of 9 white and 2 black commissioners, to study the “why” of the recent violence. The 420 page report produced is one of the greatest pieces of anti-racist research ever produced by the government.
11/ It laid the blame for violence directly in the lap of America’s white supremacy. The Report included statements like the following: “What white Americans have never fully understood—but what the Negro can never forget—is that white society is deeply implicated in the ghetto.
12/ ... White institutions created it, white institutions maintain it, and white society condones it,” and “Our nation is moving towards two societies, one black, one white—separate and unequal.”
13/ So then, LBJ displayed his trident anti-racism and followed the full range of the Report’s recommendations? Not at all! The report did not lay the blame on those LBJ ACTUALLY thought were the source of the violence, so he created a second commission with a more ...
14/ ... carefully selected membership. They gave him a “better” answer, the answer he wanted: black violence and the breakdown of the black home were the cause of the civil unrest. What is the solution? More police, more weapons, stricter enforcement.
15/ LBJ did in fact act on these recommendations, and was thus an integral part in creating America’s greatest post Jim Crow method of racial social control—that which was later perfected by Republicans (to be fair).

Otherwise, I agree w/ Kruse, a real historian.
16/ Last, the Sanger “quote” is indeed bunk. In fact, it is not easy by direct means to demonstrate that Sanger had any intentions of wiping out the “Negro race.” But Sanger was clearly a racist assimilationist, as was LBJ, and without a doubt was a eugenicist.
17/ Much of the scholarship I’ve seen attempting to distance her from the eugenics movement only point to her disagreements with other eugenicists, attempting to leverage specific disagreements to mean repudiation of the project.
18/ E.g., she wrote in her “The Pivot of Civilization,”

“’Eugenics’ was first defined by Sir Francis Galton in his ‘Human Faculty’ in 1884, and was subsequently developed into a science and into an educational effort. Galton’s ideal was the rational breeding of human beings. ..
19/ ... The aim of Eugenics, as defined by its founder, is to bring as many influences as can be reasonably employed, to cause the useful classes of the community to contribute more than their proportion to the next generation. ...
20/ ... Eugenics thus concerns itself with all influences that improve the inborn qualities of a race; also with those that develop them to the utmost advantage. It is, in short, the attempt to bring reason and intelligence to bear upon heredity. ...
21/ ... But Galton, in spite of the immense value of this approach and his great stimulation to criticism, was completely unable to formulate a definite and practical working program.”

Her problems were with ineffective methods, not the program itself.
22/ The whole book, and nearly all of her writing, was just her own version, largely arguing that education, birth control, and even sterilization, were the most effective means for purifying the race and ending all social ills.
23/ Margaret Sanger was also a pretty classic Social Darwinist. She wrote on charity and benevolent aid that,

“It encourages the healthier and more normal sections of the world to shoulder the burden of unthinking and indiscriminate fecundity of others; ...
24/ ... which brings with it, as I think the reader must agree, a dead weight of human waste. Instead of decreasing and aiming to eliminate the stocks that are most detrimental to the future of the race and the world, it tends to render them to a menacing degree dominant. …
25/ ... The most serious charge that can be brought against modern ‘benevolence’ is that it encourages the perpetuation of defectives, delinquents and dependents. These are the most dangerous elements in the world community, the most devastating curse on human progress and ...
26/ ... expression.”

Further, her proposals to Woodrow Wilson (published in 1932) read like a white supremacist dream, hatched by neo-nazis, the alt-right, or Richard Spencer himself.
27/ She suggested the appointment of a “Population Congress,” with the following among its "objects”:

“b. to increase the population slowly by keeping the birth rate at its present level of fifteen per thousand, decreasing the death rate below its present mark of 11 per thousand
28/ c. to keep the doors of immigration closed to the entrance of certain aliens whose condition is known to be detrimental to the stamina of the race, such as feebleminded, idiots, morons, insane, syphilitic, epileptic, criminal, professional prostitutes, ...
29/ ... and others in this class barred by the immigration laws of 1924 [i.e., WHITES ONLY!].
30/ d. to apply a stern and rigid policy of sterilization and segregation to that grade of population whose progeny is tainted, or whose inheritance is such that objectionable traits may be transmitted to offspring.
31/ e. to insure the country against future burdens of maintenance for numerous offspring as may be born of feebleminded parents, by pensioning all persons with transmissible disease who voluntarily consent to sterilization.
32/ f. to give certain dysgenic groups in our population their choice of segregation or sterilization.

g. to apportion farm lands and homesteads for these segregated persons where they would be taught to work under competent instructors for the period of their entire lives. ...
33/ ... The first step would thus be to control the intake and output of morons, mental defectives, epileptics.

The second step would be to take an inventory of the secondary group such as illiterates, paupers, unemployables, criminals, prostitutes, dope-fiends; ...
34/ ... classify them in special departments under government medical protection, and segregate them on farms and open spaces as long as necessary for the strengthening and development of moral conduct.” ("A Plan For Peace")
35/ One may still not see the racist implications of Sanger’s program; but I would suggest that could only be due to ignorance of racial history. How do you think this would all be employed in 1920’s and 30’s America? Do you know what the 1924 Immigration Act was?
36/ Do know that it doubled down on enforcement of “whites only”? And which group of people in the 20’s and 30’s do you think were almost universally considered to meet Sanger’s categories in need of segregation, sterilization, and social control?
37/ Do you understand the concept of “assimilationism”? “Uplift Suasion”?

Here, I think I only agree with Kruse, a real historian, on the spurious nature of the quote.
38/ But, my point in bothering to write all this is not to defend the Republican Party. I do believe the GOP houses the vast majority of racists and is a constant purveyor of racist ideas. But please don’t pretend there is not PLENTY to criticize about Democrats re: the KKK, ...
39/39 ... LBJ, and Margaret Sanger, when it comes to race. Well-meaning #Blexit advocates have every right to be angry with Democrats past and present. I'm a big fan of pointing out past & current racism in the history of the GOP, but I'm not a fan of running cover for the DNC.
Oh, and, yes: this is just my opinion and I am not a "real" historian.
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