The Senate GOP gave Mississippi Senator Trent Lott an early christmas gift by electing him back into the top ranks of their leadership as Republican Whip, the number two ranking position. I know y’all recall the contretemps surrounding his laudatory comments at former Senator Strom Thurmond’s 100th Birthday Bash. “I want to say this about my state: When Strom Thurmond ran for president we voted for him. We’re proud of it. And if the rest of the country had of followed our lead we wouldn’t have had all these problems over all these years, either.”
What problems would those be, Senator? Miscegenation, desegregation, racial equality, voting rights for nigras? Senator Thurmond is famous for the statement, “I want to tell you, ladies and gentleman, that there’s not enough troops in the army to force the southern people to break down segregation and admit the Nigra race into our theaters, into our swimming pools, into our homes, and into our churches.” A statement of the boldest hypocrisy given the fact that he sired a child with a black domestic in his family’s employ.
The President of the United States, in one his finer moments of which there have been damn few, denounced Trent Lott by saying, “Recent comments by Sen. Lott do not reflect the spirit of our country. He has apologized and rightly so. Every day that our nation was segregated was a day our nation was unfaithful to our founding ideals.”
Senate Republicans responded to White House opposition of Trent Lott by forcing him out as Majority Leader. In a move unmistakable in its impudence, the Senate GOP has given a middle finger to Dubya by reinstating Lott. They are also saying to the nation that politicians who cut their politcal teeth at the feet of segregationists are acceptable leaders in the 21st century.
I beg to differ.