Saturday, August 9, 2014

Richard Nixon resigned...

Dixiecrat Strom Thurmond and Nixon.
...on August 9, 1974, forty years ago today. There are so many things you could say about the 37th president (good and bad), but Richard Cohen writes "Nixon's Lasting Damage" (my emphasis):

It was Nixon who devised and pursued what came to be called the Southern strategy. This was, in the admirably concise wording of Wikipedia, an appeal "to racism against African-Americans."

The damage Nixon did to his own party, not to mention the rights of African-Americans and the cause of racial comity, has lasted long after the stench of Watergate has dispersed. It not only persuaded blacks that the Republican Party was inhospitable to them but it in effect welcomed racists to the GOP fold. Dixiecrats moved smartly to the right.

President Reagan and Thurmond.
The Democratic Party showed racists the door. The GOP welcomed them and, of course, their fellow travelers -- creationists, gun nuts, anti-abortion zealots, immigrant haters of all sorts and homophobes. Increasingly, the Republican Party has come to be defined by what it opposes and not what it proposes. Its abiding enemy is modernity.

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