Democrats & KKK vs African-Americans

It is unfortunate that so many African-Americans don’t know their own history. They have given their loyalty to the political party that defended slavery and imposed restrictions on their ability to vote at the state level.

At one time in American history the Democratic Party had such tight control over the electorate in the southern states that the term “Solid South” was used to describe it. The origins of this voting pattern go back to the days of Reconstruction. During that time in history, the Republicans were the protectors of Negro rights.  It was the Radical Republicans who passed the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments which freed all slaves, made Negroes citizens, provided for the equal protection of the laws and gave Negro men the right to vote.  The use of the Negro is the word used in these documents.

The Democratic Party partnered with the Ku Klux Klan to fight the federal government against the newly freed slaves. J. Michael Martinez wrote about this in his book, “Carpetbaggers, Cavalry, and the Ku Klux Klan: Exposing the Invisible Empire During Reconstruction” which was published by Rowman and Littlefield Publishers, Inc. in 2007. The book was part of a series on the Civil War Crisis.

Martinez wrote:

“The post- January 1869 Klan grew without an overall plan or purpose…. The group’s history became murky because the loss of even a semblance of central control meant that each den was free to act on its own authority…. As a decentralized loosely structured series of groups, the dens sported different agendas and employed different methods.  Some clubs were apolitical, purely social, and predominantly nonviolent. Others were active in opposing Republican-controlled Reconstruction governments through violence and intimidation.  They targeted white Northern leaders, Southern sympathizers, and politically active blacks.

By the time the 1868 elections occurred the Klan was no longer a mysterious, invisible group.  Membership was growing across the South.  National publications such as Harper’s Weekly began regularly reporting on the group’s activities, arguing that the KKK was, in effect, a terrorist arm of the Democratic Party….Indeed, from 1868 onward, apologists would face a difficult task in arguing that the Klan was merely a social club after many dens blatantly promoted the Democratic Party—through violent means if necessary.

Elected president as a Republican in 1868, Ulysses S. Grant, the former Union general… commented that the Klan was clearly a political group. In his view, the Klan was committed ‘by force and terror, to prevent all political action not in accord with the views of the members, to deprive colored citizens the right to bear arms and the right of a free ballot, to suppress the schools in which the colored children were taught, and to reduce the colored people to a condition closely allied to that of slavery’.

Klan dens did not engage in concerted action, but they shared a common goal of electing Democrats to office at all levels of government.” (pages 23-24)

Fast forward to the present! Louisiana Senator Elbert Guillory understands his African-American history. He is a former Democrat. When describing Democratic policies that apply to African-Americans, he uses the term “government plantation”. Click this link and see why Guillory switched to the Republican side.


About camden41

Retired public school administrator Retired history professor: Taught Western Civilization, American Civil War, United States History, Economic History, Ancient & Medieval Foundations, American History Since 1945
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