Patterico's Pontifications

7/13/2019

Tennessee Governor Proclaims Day Of Observance For Former Klansman

Filed under: General — Dana @ 1:35 pm



[guest post by Dana]

And to think that in 1921, this was proclaimed a legal holiday:

Gov. Bill Lee has proclaimed Saturday as Nathan Bedford Forrest Day in Tennessee, a day of observation to honor the former Confederate general and early Ku Klux Klan leader whose bust is on display in the state Capitol.

Per state law, the Tennessee governor is tasked with issuing proclamations for six separate days of special observation, three of which, including the July 13 Forrest Day, pertain to the Confederacy.

Lee — and governors who have come before him — are also required by state law to proclaim Jan. 19 as Robert E. Lee Day, honoring the commander of the Confederate Army, as well as June 3 Confederate Decoration Day, otherwise known as Confederate Memorial Day and the birthday of Confederate President Jefferson Davis.

Here is the wording on the proclamation:

Untitled

While Democrats have tried to change law and failed, it’s puzzling that Gov. Lee doesn’t seem interested in making any such effort himself:

“I signed the bill because the law requires that I do that and I haven’t looked at changing that law,” Lee said Thursday.

He declined to say whether he believed state law should be changed to no longer require the governor to issue such proclamations or whether he had reservations about doing so.

“I haven’t even looked at that law, other than knowing I needed to comply with it, so that’s what I did,” Lee said. “When we look at the law, then we’ll see.”

A brief overview of Forrest:

Nathan Bedford Forrest, (born July 13, 1821, near Chapel Hill, Tennessee, U.S.—died October 29, 1877, Memphis, Tennessee), Confederate cavalry commander in the American Civil War (1861–65) who was often described as a “born military genius.” His rule of action, “Get there first with the most men,” became one of the most often quoted statements of the war. Forrest is also one of the most controversial figures from the Civil War era. His command was responsible for the massacre of African American Union troops stationed at Fort Pillow, Tennessee, in April 1864, and he served as the first grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan in the early years of Reconstruction.

Sen. Ted Cruz pushed back against the proclamation:

This is WRONG. Nathan Bedford Forrest was a Confederate general & a delegate to the 1868 Democratic Convention. He was also a slave trader & the 1st Grand Wizard of the KKK. Tennessee should not have an official day (tomorrow) honoring him. Change the law.

American history is complicated. As a general matter, we shouldn’t be tearing down historical statues or erasing our Founders, even though they were imperfect men. But we should also provide context where we can. And, we shouldn’t be issuing proclamations today honoring Klansmen.

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)

–Dana

UPDATE FROM PATTERICO: Stirring statement from Cruz. Those are his principles and he’s sticking with them, unless sticking with them might endanger his re-election prospects. Maybe Trump can come out in support of the Governor’s action, causing Cruz to change his mind.

88 Responses to “Tennessee Governor Proclaims Day Of Observance For Former Klansman”

  1. Hello.

    Dana (bb0678)

  2. Concerning that law, I would change the word (and all synonyms) “honor” to “remember.” Don’t we (or shouldn’t we) remember the Holocaust? Hitler? Veterans? This would be most appropriate, lest we forget history.

    felipe (023cc9)

  3. You’ve heard of Tin ear, yours has to be stainless steel to do this, in this climate.

    Narciso (0bfcbe)

  4. Villains, too, should be remembered. Against whom did the Lord send Moses? Against what did Jonas Sauk research? Against where do we strive to live better lives?

    felipe (023cc9)

  5. I do note that the proclamation does not use the word “honor.” “Worthy observance” seems neutral. “Recognize” is in the spirit or remembrance. What is missing is context. Text without context is still pretext.

    felipe (023cc9)

  6. He who buys the first round doesn’t have to buy again; this pleases the cretinous margins and he has 3 years to make up for it in various ways (see DeSantis, R.) before some Taylor Swift squad flunky or Chicawgo pensioneer makes a run at him in ’22

    urbanleftbehind (91e7c5)

  7. it’s just stupidity on stilts, Robert e lee was a career military, forrest was a terrorist, that’s just dialing to eleventy, on unawareness,

    narciso (d1f714)

  8. His command was responsible for the massacre of African American Union troops stationed at Fort Pillow, Tennessee, in April 1864, and he served as the first grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan in the early years of Reconstruction.

    There was never any evidence that Forest himself was responsible for a “massacre” at Ft. Pillow. If he had been, he would’ve be tried after the war. That’s why the quote above uses the sneaky phrase “His Command”. It not even clear if the “Massacre” was a violation of the rules of war. After an investigation, both Grant and Sherman let the matter slide.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  9. Too bad Cruz is grandstanding on this, but then he needs to get re-elected. Going after Historical figures because they owned slaves, will result in our renaming Washington DC and burning down Mt. Vernon. I wonder if Ted is in favor of that?

    rcocean (1a839e)

  10. Its amazing that the farther we get away from slavery’s existence (which ended in 1865) the greater the hatred and grandstanding about how evil it was. Absurd. The constant hunt for historical things to be outraged and shocked about.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  11. Let the Dems change it. Cruz – and any Republican -will get ZERO credit for getting rid of the Proclamation honoring Forest. Did Ike or Nixon get any credit for passing a civil rights bill in 1957/1958? No. Almost no one talks about it. Do the R’s get credit for helping pass the ’64 civil rights bill? Nope. MSM Propaganda has made people think the R’s opposed it! All this pandering gets the R’s nowhere. It just sets them up for the next big test, where they have to prove they aren’t Racist.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  12. “American history is complicated.” – Tedtoo.

    To a Canadian, perhaps. Like that basketball ring thingy.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  13. One can make distinctions, or one can behave stupidly,

    Narciso (0bfcbe)

  14. I will grant that the 1860s Confederates were nowhere near as disgusting a bunch of dog-molesting degenerates as today’s Confederates, but that’s about all.

    nk (dbc370)

  15. I did ask are their any honest pols of note in chicago?

    Narciso (0bfcbe)

  16. Significantly, I am not admitted to practice in Tennessee, and thus can make no more than educated guesses as a Texas lawyer about its statutes.

    However, from the 2019 version of the Tennessee Code Annotated, as republished free by Lexis and current through the 2018 regular session, here’s section 15-2-101, entitled “Additional special observance days,” within the constraints of which — until altered — every Tennessee governor must operate to fulfil his or her state statutory and constitutional obligations:

    Each year it is the duty of the governor of this state to proclaim the following as days of special observance: January 19, “Robert E. Lee Day”; February 12, “Abraham Lincoln Day”; March 15, “Andrew Jackson Day”; June 3, “Memorial Day” or “Confederate Decoration Day”; July 13, “Nathan Bedford Forrest Day”; and November 11, “Veterans’ Day.” The governor shall invite the people of this state to observe the days in schools, churches, and other suitable places with appropriate ceremonies expressive of the public sentiment befitting the anniversary of such dates.

    I’m a bit puzzled by the source Dana quoted and linked article from Nashville’s “The Tennessean,” which quotes “legislative librarian Eddie Weeks” as saying:

    Forrest Day first became a holiday in 1921, the 100th anniversary of his birth; Robert E. Lee Day began in 1917, though it was initially referred to only as “the nineteenth day of January,” and Confederate Decoration Day was first observed as a legal holiday in the state in 1903, according to Weeks.

    The reason for my puzzlement is that the legislative history listed both on this Lexis version, and a parallel version on Justicia.com, refer to section 15-2-101 as having been enacted in 1931, and then amended in 1953, 1954, 1969, and 1973. Perhaps the legislative history listings don’t consider some prior version of the Tennessee statutes before a major recodification; that seems entirely possible to me, and consistent with Mr. Weeks’ comments.

    Regardless, however: This isn’t some moldy old relic that the Tennessee Legislature passed during the Klan’s resurgence in the 1920s and has since forgotten. That they’ve looked at and amended this statute in other respects at least four times since it was passed seems a stain on the Tennessee Legislature in my opinion, a series of legislative sins of deliberate omission to compound its original sin of commission.

    My good friend felipe (#5) points to the resolution’s use of the term “worthy observance,” and points out that on its face, that seems neutral. The word “observance” – without the qualifier “worthy” — traces directly to the statute. However, since the statute requires the governor to “invite” the people of Tennessee to observe this day “in schools, churches, and other suitable places with appropriate ceremonies expressive of the public sentiment befitting the anniversary of [this] date,” i.e., the anniversary of Forrest’s birth, “worthy” is a reasonable shorthand condensation. Hitler’s birthday (coincidentally my wedding anniversary) of April 20 is likewise “worthy” of ceremonies expressive of the public sentiment “appropriate[ly] … befitting” the anniversary of his birth — that is to say, lamentation, mourning not for him but for his victims, and regretful but clear-eyed remembrance of his evil. So I agree with felipe, at least if we’re to extend the Tennessee Legislature a benefit of the doubt.

    (The Texas Legislature certainly has needed, and still needs, such a benefit with considerable frequency. I’m also curious whether the amendments merely added, for example, “Abraham Lincoln Day,” or if any of them also tweaked the language common to all of these “additional holidays” to give the governor more discretion to be guarded, ambivalent, or even disapproving. But that would frankly surprise me.)

    It’s also true that the operative language of the proclamation — declaring July 13, 2019, as “Nathan Bedford Forrest Day” — is, unfortunately, directly required by the plain language of the statute. So the third paragraph of the proclamation can be blamed mostly upon the Tennessee Legislature. But note: the statute is silent as to the additional, contextual language that Gov. Lee and other Tennessee governors could have added, had they so chosen; and legislative silence implies executive discretion in this context.

    The proclamation’s first and second paragraphs, beginning with “Whereas,” are “recitals,” something intended to give the context that, as felipe points out, is essential. The proclamation’s first paragraph simply recites, in close and accurate paraphrase, what the statute says; I blame Gov. Lee for nothing in it.

    But that second recital, comprising the second paragraph, Gov. Lee must own, to his shame. Both statements are true, as true as would be a statement that “Adolf Hitler was known to like dogs and small children, to be a nonsmoker, to harbor artistic impulses despite his inability to make a living from his paintings and drawings, and to be a native of Austria from before the 1938 Anschluss.” Would that be an acceptable recital that fairly characterizes the historical significance of Adolf Hitler? Or would that amount to a shameful cover-up by omission? I submit that it would be the latter.

    Sen. Cruz is exactly correct. I’d be even more condemnatory, and point a finger more directly: This law, and especially the manner in which Gov. Lee complied with it, are fundamentally wrong. This law and this resolution would have been wrong before the era of political correctness; they are still wrong; they would be wrong in any era; they are wrong on their face, without regard to motives or subtleties or excuses or whatabouts. They are indefensible unless one is a stone-cold racist and an apologist for brutality and the commission of what were, even at the time, recognized even by many Confederates, as racially motivated war crimes. Other Confederate leaders recognized that they were tactically stupid, because nothing could have better ensured that the Union troops, especially its new black troops, would fight to their own deaths and deny quarter to their enemies. Fort Pillow was as bad as, and quite arguably worse than, the Malmady massacre by the Germans during the Battle of the Bulge or the Katyn Forest massacre by the Germans in 1940.

    Instead, while still complying fully with his statutory duties, Gov. Lee could and should have written — and must be held responsible for choosing not to write — something like this as the operative paragraph:

    Now, therefore, I, Bill Lee, Governor of the State of Tennessee, do hereby proclaim July 13, 2019, as the Nathan Bedford Forrest Day of Lamentation, Mourning, and Remembrance. I invite all Tennessee citizens to join me in observing this tragic date in schools, churches, and other suitable places with ceremonies expressive of the public’s appropriate sentiments of regret for, and condemnation and remembrance of, Forrest’s deep and fundamental evil as a war criminal and a leader of the KKK. I invite Tennesseans to join me in mourning and lamentation for Forrest’s many victims, so that we as Tennesseans never forget the stain he left upon our State’s honor, and that we may always strive to prevent his like from such evil in the future. As is justly said of an even greater evil, the Holocaust: Never forget.

    Comparing Forrest to Robert E. Lee is contemptible. Of Lee at Appomattox, Grant famously wrote in his memoirs:

    I felt like anything rather than rejoicing at the downfall of a foe who had fought so long and valiantly, and had suffered so much for a cause, though that cause was, I believe, one of the worst for which a people ever fought, and one for which there was the least excuse.

    The same could be said of many, probably most, Confederates. But Nathan Bedford Forrest, despite his military skills, was evil; he used his skills as a leader to lead men into evil. Period.

    Beldar (a5097b)

  17. @14. You will ‘grant’?! LOL

    From Traitor Forrest’s regiment recruitment poster: ‘Let’s have some fun and kill some Yankees.’ – source, wikiRebbio

    Today, he’d be a Red Sox fan.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  18. Forrest renounced the clan and his involvement and was even welcomed to black congregations as
    reconstruction expanded. No… Nathan Bedford Forrest was not a terrorist but was the best
    calvary officers produced from either side.

    Ed (a76850)

  19. Whoops. Both of my links in #16 went to Justicia.com. Here’s the link to the (free) Lexis version.

    Beldar (a5097b)

  20. Ed (#18): You may forgive him. Some contemporaries may have forgiven him. God will make His own decision. Regardless, the Tennessee statute, and the proclamation, don’t celebrate his late in life change of heart, if any, and if sincere (which I frankly don’t believe).

    Beldar (a5097b)

  21. I would actually declare that the proclamation is a clever exercise in minimalism, were it not for the last line about “encourage all citizens to join me in this worthy observance.” If I were governor and had to sign this, I would at least see about striking that last line.

    JVW (54fd0b)

  22. Forrest renounced the clan and his involvement and was even welcomed to black congregations as
    reconstruction expanded.

    So put that language in the proclamation then.

    JVW (54fd0b)

  23. Let the Dems change it. Cruz – and any Republican -will get ZERO credit for getting rid of the Proclamation honoring Forest.

    Yeah, the hell with right and wrong, the real question to ask is “Will I get the proper credit for this?”

    JVW (54fd0b)

  24. Tell me, Ed: Besides visiting a black church or two, did Forrest ever decide to devote the remainder of his life to trying to atone for his evils, to educate others about his evils, and to remediating the damage to the families of hundreds of men he and his followers murdered in cold blood?

    Don’t bother to answer, because (1) there is no answer and (2) I’m adding you to my blocking script now and wouldn’t see it anyway.

    Beldar (a5097b)

  25. Beldar.Mahalo for the Young Ben Franklin suggestion. Loving it.

    mg (8cbc69)

  26. Yeah, the hell with right and wrong, the real question to ask is “Will I Trump get the proper credit for this?”

    FIFY TML

    nk (dbc370)

  27. @14. You will ‘grant’?!

    Sure, man. Why not?

    nk (dbc370)

  28. @ rcocean,

    Let the Dems change it. Cruz – and any Republican -will get ZERO credit for getting rid of the Proclamation honoring Forest. Did Ike or Nixon get any credit for passing a civil rights bill in 1957/1958? No. Almost no one talks about it. Do the R’s get credit for helping pass the ’64 civil rights bill? Nope. MSM Propaganda has made people think the R’s opposed it! All this pandering gets the R’s nowhere. It just sets them up for the next big test, where they have to prove they aren’t Racist.

    I find this troubling. The reason to do what is right is, it’s the right thing to do. The R or D should not come into consideration. If something is morally wrong and antithetical to the bedrock principles of your life, your conscience, your community, your political party, and everything that our country stands upon and stands for, then you strive to do what is right. This, regardless of getting credit for it or not later on. (I understand the frustration, however, but still believe that it should not be a determining factor in making a moral stand – especially for one who claims to be a conservative.) And here’s the thing: sometimes the right thing can be muddied up by nuance and a complicated history, but I posit that, in this there is absolutely a clear and righteous thing to do. That a Republican governor doesn’t seem too interested in fixing this, is to his shame.

    This thinking, that we don’t do X because we won’t get credit or because the D’s will throw us under the next bus anyway, so why do it, speaks to the bitter anger of Trump supporters that Trump was able to tap into and exploit for his gain. He was able to rise in the polls and even get elected by reaching into the emotional frustrations and resentment of a lot of Americans who felt disenfranchised by an ineffective GOP, and saw their beliefs and lifestyles mocked and berated by Democrats.

    Dana (bb0678)

  29. How many people even knew of this proclamation before the MSM reported it. From what I can tell, its been going on for 80 years. Yet, all TODAY are OUTRAGED!11 Why nobody hates Rebels and Slavery in 2019 – 154 years later, more than they do. LOL! you can’t make this up. It reminds me of a comic teenage movie from the 1990s where some HS students are viewing an exhibition on Slavery/Civil War and the pompous twit HS Senior tries to impress the girls by exclaiming: “If only I could go back in time and tell those slaveholders what i really think!”

    rcocean (1a839e)

  30. rcocean,

    So you are saying that you would not stand up to push back against the law and try to change it if you lived in Tennessee? And if that’s so, do you understand that the resistance to changing the law (not even standing up, but just resisting change) can be seen as a tacit approval of carving out a special day for a Klansman?

    Dana (bb0678)

  31. One, I agree with Beldar here: Beldar (a5097b) — 7/13/2019 @ 5:59 pm
    Two, Forrest’s notoriety was because of his efforts as a Confederate and racist. He is not being recognized by the State of Tennessee for renouncing his Confederate ties and racism.
    Three, the man was a war criminal who slaughtered soldiers who had already surrendered. For that alone, he should be condemned, not proclaimed.
    Four, he’s a liar. He was a Grand Wizard but later in life denied he was KKK.
    Five, the governor may be bound by law to proclaim the guy, but he missed a great opportunity to criticize said law and provide some historical context.

    Paul Montagu (7d1213)

  32. Because it’s too easy for a jackass like Biden who made deals with eastland on busing and then demagogues Republicans will put you In Chains, and that garbage worked in part because mumenchanz Romney didnt object,

    Narciso (0bfcbe)

  33. Also, you seem very emotionally charged in your response at 29. Why does it bother you that people hate to see Klansmen and slave traders recognized by a state?

    Dana (bb0678)

  34. 4… felipe is correct. This virtue signaling illness is enough of a pestilence on the left, don’t be going all apey about it on the right.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  35. OT – blackout in NYC on the 42nd anniversary of the big 1977 one.

    urbanleftbehind (91e7c5)

  36. Because they weaponize history to gain power, after they’ve buried it for an interval, does it matter that Lincoln freed the slaves, and Wilson put them back in chains and FDR relied on those powerbrokers the Walter georges the rankins of the world to stay in power.

    Narciso (0bfcbe)

  37. Moreover, rcocean, it bothers me greatly that this Republican governor does not consider this an issue worth delving into since it is on the radar. The GOP governor is a 7th generation Tennessean. Wouldn’t you like to know why he doesn’t seem to interested in fixing this? If it there is the possibility that relationships with the black community could become better, wouldn’t that be worth any new governor at least making a concerted effort to change the law?

    Dana (bb0678)

  38. @ mg (#25): Glad you’re enjoying it. Young Ben Franklin: The Birth of Ingenuity filled gaps in my knowledge I was unaware I had, but was very glad afterwards to have filled!

    Beldar (a5097b)

  39. How many people even knew of this proclamation before the MSM reported it.

    What difference does that really make? The media did its job in reporting about the State of Tennessee giving recognition to a bad guy. What ever happened to “if you see something, say something”?

    Paul Montagu (fc91e5)

  40. There is such a thing as self inflicted wounds, however fritz hollings was the first to fly the stars and bars in the common era, and yet nothing attaches to dems, in part because civics education is purposefully terrible.

    Narciso (0bfcbe)

  41. The same media that marvels how the is no pressure for northam to resign, because they lie down like calico cats, same for the rapist Fairfax, who is looking at pursuing higher office.

    Narciso (0bfcbe)

  42. *Katyn Forest massacre by the Russians in 1940, I ought to have written in #16.

    Beldar (a5097b)

  43. That happened during the wonderful molotov ribbentrop pact, when the communist party was Hitlers enablers.

    Narciso (0bfcbe)

  44. All you here about America, from Howard zinn and now jill lepores primers is America is an unredeemably evil place, how else does an o’Rourke or an ocasio Cortez, not get booed of atage.

    Narciso (0bfcbe)

  45. Do they show any gratitude for the opportunities they have been granted heck no, right now they are in the minority but In 10-15 years, you want to guarantee that.

    Narciso (0bfcbe)

  46. With apologies to the great Tom Lehrer…

    Gather ’round while I sing you of Canadian Cruz,
    A man whose allegiance is ruled by expedience;
    Call him unprincipled for changing his views,
    “Principles, schminzables,” coos Canadian Cruz.

    Don’t say that he’s hypocritical,
    Say rather that he’s quite political;
    “Called Donald despicable but now that’s old news!
    Memories are short,” coos Canadian Cruz

    Some have harsh words for this bait-and-switch ruse,
    But some say their attitude should be one of gratitude;
    Like the wife and the father; their honor abused,
    So easily betrayed by Canadian Cruz

    To remain a conservative hero,
    Avoid almost losing to Beto;
    “My beard nearly clipped; my margin not huge.
    But a win is a win,” coos Canadian Cruz.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  47. @27. That’s very ‘Ulysses S.’ of you!

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  48. That requires the Billy Madison clip Rafael Cruz was educated at the university of texas, but there wasnt much call for oil workers in 1969, so he relocated his family to alberta.

    Narciso (0bfcbe)

  49. @18. He was the ‘good confederate,’ eh.

    Albert would proudly salute.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  50. There is also the matter the us govt tried to discourage any diaspora settling in one city, after initial arrival.

    Narciso (0bfcbe)

  51. To paraphrase the legendary Jerry Della Femina;

    ‘From those wonderful folks who gave you Fort Sumter…
    …comes Nathan Bedford Forrest Day!’

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  52. Clearly Ted Cruz falls on the new school side of this debate: http://www.texasmonthly.com/the-daily-post/is-texas-southern-western-or-truly-a-lone-star/

    urbanleftbehind (91e7c5)

  53. “There is such a thing as self inflicted wounds, however fritz hollings was the first to fly the stars and bars in the common era, and yet nothing attaches to dems, in part because civics education is purposefully terrible.”

    Everyone knows that the Confederates were Democrats. Everyone can also see which party has people flying the Confederate flag now.

    Davethulhu (bc6fa6)

  54. Everyone knows that the Confederates were Democrats. Everyone can also see which party has people flying the Confederate flag now.

    Davethulhu (bc6fa6) — 7/13/2019 @ 9:26 pm

    OutKast and Kayne West?

    NJRob (4d595c)

  55. As the kleons say revenge is a dish best eaten cold.The blacks remember fort pillow.

    lany (818d71)

  56. Davethulhu (bc6fa6) — 7/13/2019 @ 9:26 pm

    There are some (I include myself) here that are no longer a member of any party because of the general feeling that “their” party left them rather than they left their party. I will be so bold as to suggest that any R who, today, flies the Confederate flag, is among those abandoned by the Democrats long ago by continuing to the left. I predict that the Democrats relentless march will also leave Black Democrats no choice but to join the ranks of Independents in voting patterns, and if the Republicans can keep from blowing it, eventually, the Republican party. But other peoples money might have to run out, first.

    felipe (023cc9)

  57. I apologize for the poor construction of my previous comment – I’m tired. Time to sleep.

    felipe (023cc9)

  58. Bedlar – Gaelic Dunbeag means small fort. Just happen to know that as my inlaws are from Milltown Malby, just down the road a piece.

    mg (8cbc69)

  59. Wrong thread, sorry.

    mg (8cbc69)

  60. Anybody think to ask Gov. Lee how he intends to observe the day? In a couple of months, we’ll all be observing 9/11. Anybody here planning on throwing celebratory parties to commemorate the day? Anybody here so dimwitted as to think for one second that “observing” 9/11 means “celebrating” 9/11?

    Jerryskids (702a61)

  61. Jerryskids (702a61) — 7/14/2019 @ 8:11 am
    I, personally, know of one human who enthusiastically (though privately, and guardedly) celebrates 9/11 as a triumph of a virtuous people over a corrupt people.

    Thank you for this opportunity to make my own testimony on the matter, lest I forget.

    felipe (023cc9)

  62. Beldar (a5097b) — 7/13/2019 @ 5:59 pm

    I thank Beldar for explicitly saying what I implied in my earlier comments. I wholeheartedly associate myself with all his remarks.

    felipe (023cc9)

  63. @56

    There are some that never joined a party so the party can’t leave them (I include myself).

    MasterBaker (bcae7b)

  64. We should know how foolish are the people who pay him

    https://mobile.twitter.com/omriceren/status/1150374879218360320?s=21

    Narciso (7adc33)

  65. UPDATE FROM PATTERICO: Stirring statement from Cruz. Those are his principles and he’s sticking with them, unless sticking with them might endanger his re-election prospects. Maybe Trump can come out in support of the Governor’s action, causing Cruz to change his mind.

    Patterico (522dfb)

  66. I would still like to hear from rcocean about his principles, which seem to inform his view that we do the right thing so that we can get credit and not because it is simply the right thing to do.

    Dana (bb0678)

  67. Well it really doesn’t matter what your record is, that explains Joe bidens career, who has been wrong 80% of the time, you can be 80% right like John Bolton and you get contempt.

    Narciso (7adc33)

  68. I guessed: Nathan Bedford Forrest.

    And they’ve been doing this ever year.

    Getting rid of this makes much more sense than getting rid of some statues of men who weren’t as evil.

    Sammy Finkelman (19c914)

  69. Rcocean objects:

    Cruz – and any Republican -will get ZERO credit for getting rid of the Proclamation honoring Forest. Did Ike or Nixon get any credit for passing a civil rights bill in 1957/1958? No. Almost no one talks about it. Do the R’s get credit for helping pass the ’64 civil rights bill? Nope. MSM Propaganda has made people think the R’s opposed it! All this pandering gets the R’s nowhere. It just sets them up for the next big test, where they have to prove they aren’t Racist.

    On strict utilitarian grounds, I don’t think all of this is quite right. For one thing, the GOP can get credit for actions like this. Gov. Haley did get credit for taking down the Confederate flag in SC, and that action is the ONLY reason she has escaped being tarred with the Trump brush after being in his cabinet.

    For a second thing, while certain GOP members were instrumental in the Civil Rights Act passage, the GOP presidential standard bearer in 1964 opposed the act vocally, and the GOP immediately began to appeal to angry Southern whites, arguing that the Democrats had betrayed them.

    As for the 1957 Civil Rights Act — my memory is that it did not do much, which is why nobody got much credit for it.

    On non-utilitarian grounds, I don’t see how you can make effective decisions without some moral center. IF, on some level, you don’t sense what’s right, all you do is going to be based on guesswork about whatever others think is right. You won’t always be correct about that. And, ultimately, you will manage to look unprincipled while being unpopular.

    Appalled (1a17de)

  70. For a second thing, while certain GOP members were instrumental in the Civil Rights Act passage,

    Go look up the numbers. In 1964, The senate R’s voted 27-6 for civil rights; the D’s voted 46-21. In 1957, its the DEMOCRATS who stopped and water-downed the Civil Rights bill. And the final vote showed Republicans voted for the bill 43-0, while Democrats voted 29-18. In 1960, Nixon campaigned harder for Civil rights then JFK. And LBJ in 1960 was still posing as “Somewhat Segregationist” so he could win their votes. The result is people like you want to give all the credit to the D’s. Which proves my point. Pandering on racial issues gets the R’s NOWHERE.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  71. If this Tennessee Gov had refused to sign the N.B. Forest proclamation, what would have happened? He would have got ZERO applause from the Demcorats, and they would just wait for another chance to call him racist. Any R who panders, is an idiot. Cruz never struck me as particularly smart. His behavior after Trump won proves that.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  72. I live in the real world. I’m not interested in having political “Principles” and LOSING and making life worse for my country, my family, and myself. I don’t see it as a Game. Besides, one can have all kinds of principles and they often conflict. So which principles do I stand by? Finally, i find it curious, how so many people suddenly decide their Principles don’t matter when something they really care about comes along. Liberals were/are notorious for this. They believe in X, EXCEPT when it really hurts the Left and then its “well i believe in x But this time, blah blah”.

    In 1920 all the Principled Leftists were pacifists, then in 1936 they dropped that principle. Then in 1946 they went back to being pacifists (except where South Africa or Israel was concerned). And they continue to flip-flop on all their other “principles”.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  73. Does Mitt Romney have a principle on Immigration? He’s flipped-flopped so many times on Amnesty, his flops have flips. Yet, they say Mitt Romney is an honorable man.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  74. #70

    I am curious where your “real belief” is. You don’t argue the racists are right. But you use the word “pandering” in referring to what the GOP did in 1960 and 1964, which is a word that suggests insincerity. And that leads me to the question your #71 raises

    What is the downside for working to get the Forrest Declaration Law repealed? I mean, your answer to doing the right thing is that it nets no benefit. Do you really think it would do harm?

    Appalled (1a17de)

  75. Neither Ike nor Nixon deserved any particular credit for the Civil Rights Act of 1957. Rather, its passage was engineered almost entirely by Texas’ senior U.S. Senator at the time, Lyndon B. Johnson, who was the Senate Majority Leader. The history of the U.S. Senate, and in particular its tradition of unlimited debate and the encrosions thereupon by the cloture rule (which limits filibustering), is the deep background for Robert Caro’s third volume in his (not yet complete) five-volume biography of LBJ, Master of the Senate: The Years of Lyndon Johnson (2009). I’ve said here before, and repeat, that in my opinion, this is the single best book ever written about American politics, and its relevance continues through the current day, as the filibuster has been abolished outright for presidential appointments and is under heavy fire (justifiably so IMHO) for ordinary legislation.

    Appalled is absolutely right (#69) that in terms of what it actually accomplished, the CRA of ’57 was almost trivial in comparison with the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. But on the other hand, it was the first civil rights legislation of any sort passed since Reconstruction, every other attempt to pass any such legislation having been absolutely stonewalled by southern senators — until 1957, including LBJ himself, as a protege of stone-cold bigot Richard Russell (D-GA) — using their long tenures and resulting committee chairmanships. Caro’s book tells the story of LBJ’s own curious history on civil rights, his ability to convince both pro- and anti-civil rights senators of both parties that he was “in their camp,” and ultimately, his absolutely brilliant logrolling, intimidation, bribery, and mastery of Senate procedural rules to bring about an incredibly improbable result. When LBJ lost the 1960 Democratic nomination to upstart (and wishy-washy, on this issue) Jack Kennedy, JFK’s need for Texas electoral votes obliged him (over RFK’s virulent objections) to make LBJ his running mate. And LBJ went from being the most powerful man on Capitol Hill, as undoubtedly the most effective Senate majority leader in history, to a job that FDR’s Veep John Nance Garner (another Texan) had miserably but memorably described as “not worth a warm bucket of spit.” (Garner actually said “sh!t,” but the quote was sanitized for publication.) But November 22, 1963, put LBJ back into real power, and, as Caro’s fourth book describes, LBJ was able to use the political martyrdom of JFK to build upon the 1957 CRA with the 1964 CRA and 1965 VRA and, ultimately, all of his Great Society legislation. Caro thus demonstrates — conclusively in my opinion — that the 1957 CRA was indeed incredibly important in historical context, not for what it did, but for what it made possible in the following decade.

    Only an utterly clueless idiot who’s deeply ignorant of American government and history could believe Dick Nixon had any influence in the Senate as Ike’s Veep (except as a tie-breaker). The only people who pretend that the Veep has any real power are the press spinners, typically for the Veep himself, who’re trying to keep him in the headlines for a possible future run at the top spot.

    That said, it is fair to say that Democrats have claimed, unjustly, all the credit for the “Civil Rights Era,” which actually was made possible by a fragile coalition comprising most Republicans, some western and northern Democrats, and LBJ’s outmaneuvering of his own party’s Senate caucus, notwithstanding their attempted filibuster.

    Beldar (a5097b)

  76. (Mike Pence arguably has an extraordinary amount of credibility, but not power, as the current Veep, as compared to historical ones — but that’s because his principal, Trump, is an ass-clown with so little credibility on the Hill.)

    Beldar (a5097b)

  77. @ mg (#58): I apologize for having unfairly mocked the name of your Irish kin’s neighboring town (in comments on that thread). I ought not make jokes directed at Trump which could rebound upon the undeserving.

    Beldar (a5097b)

  78. Generally the Senate does not abide by hippocrates and does know harm, take the ‘gird your loins’ act, Humphrey assured there would be no quotas in the bill, but he was mistaken, that’s why Goldwater who actually gave a farthing about African Americans voted against it.

    Narciso (7adc33)

  79. Conversely LBJ had been avoiding Vietnam since dien Ben phu, but it was like banquos ghost. The GOP lost the Senate in 55, and hence Thurmond was able to filibuster in 57. Haley will get no credit for what she did in 15, because the virtue signaled will have moved on.

    Narciso (7adc33)

  80. The Trumpster Ethos is to only do things that could make you look good. If the morally correct thing may lower your support from even a tiny minority of your supporters, don’t bother, regardless of how morally reprehensible the act may be, only denounce it/decry it if it helps your “brand”

    A conveniently non existent moral code, with an overly self important political id. That is the basic “philosophy” for the Trumpster.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  81. In 86, the tax reform was so drastic it reduced the deductibility of real estate interests, the chenga piece the s&ls rested on, in 2004-6, geeemspans interest rate spike did much the same thing

    Narciso (7adc33)

  82. So you are saying that you would not stand up to push back against the law and try to change it if you lived in Tennessee?

    Why would I? Its been in place since the 1930’s. N.B. Forest was a great army general and has been celebrated for over a 150 years for his skill and courage. Presumably some Tennesseans like the guy. IF the D’s get in power, they will cancel it. Big whoop. And if other people care enough, the R’s will re-instate it. Its called Democracy.

    Personally, I’m not into issuing proclamations about anything. But, I’m not interested in playing the liberal game of “You’d better support this thing -we just got excited about – or you’re a racist”. That’s just being a sap. You might has well join the Left.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  83. The crazies are down thread:
    https://mobile.twitter.com/RealSaavedra/status/1150222690650734592

    When they hosted an event for historically black colleges, what was the angle?

    Narciso (7adc33)

  84. ‘Those are his principles and he’s sticking with them…’

    ROFLMAO

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E5Nefsfjf8s

    “…a man whose allegiance is ruled by expedience…’ – Tom Lehrer

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  85. ^ oops- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E5NEfsfjf8s

    After Tedtoo’s magnificent meltdown it’s simply a classic case of unprincipled brown-nosing; only outdone by Graham’s butt kissing.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  86. Narciso, Kellyanne mucked that one up with the sofa slouch which was interpreted a range of ways from disrespectful to hungry white lady at a “British Broadcasting Corp” buffet. Also is “chenga” in your #81 a spanglish portmanteau of Jenga the game and Chinga the perjorative?

    urbanleftbehind (ef38fa)

  87. it was an excuse to ignore the substance, which this place is very good at doing, the support beam, that hold the structure together,

    narciso (d1f714)

  88. Also, you seem very emotionally charged in your response at 29. Why does it bother you that people hate to see Klansmen and slave traders recognized by a state?

    I’m not “emotionally charged” about anything on the internet. BTW, you know who supports getting rid of N.B. Forest day? The Communists! So, I guess I’m just being anti-communist.

    rcocean (1a839e)


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