Front Page » Table of Contents » Archive: Politics: November 2012


We Need a Healthy GOP!

MCDOWELL CREEK, Kan. - We need a strong Republican Party!

Our democracy works best when rival parties are fountains of vigorous new ideas and when--to change metaphors--they serve as watchdogs for each other. No party has a monopoly on the truth or on corruption, either. We need more checks and balances, not fewer!

But if it is to return to health, the national Republican Party needs to shed some toxins. It needs to take a page from the book of its many local elected officials who never got into the national craziness in the first place.

But the national party is another story. Craziness is a polite term for what it got into.

The worst poison in the national Republican Party is its long-standing "Southern Strategy," developed in 1968 after the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts guaranteed southern Blacks the right to vote. The strategy involved inviting segregationist Southerners to leave the Democratic Party and join the Republicans. In return, the once-honorable party of Dwight David Eisenhower adopted the old segregationist practice of race-baiting. This strategy meant writing off the Black vote--but as Nixon strategist Kevin Phillips told the New York Times in 1970, the Republicans didn't want the Black vote; they wanted the votes of racist whites. Phillips said, "From now on, the Republicans are never going to get more than 10 to 20 percent of the Negro vote and they don't need any more than that....The more Negroes who register as Democrats in the South, the sooner the Negrophobe whites will quit the Democrats and become Republicans. That's where the votes are."

Well, that's where the votes were.

The Mural of John Brown

john-brown-capitol-mural-anti-slavery.jpgTOPEKA, Kan. - The elections are over and all too quickly the 2013 legislative session will convene in Topeka. The Capitol has been in the midst of renovations but one iconic image remains to greet a new year and new visitors to the Capitol: John Steuart Curry's mural of abolitionist John Brown.

America has a long history of religious zealots embracing a political cause but Kansas may be unique in vividly paying homage to a law breaking, fire breathing, gun toting abolitionist. Curry's mural is riveting and yet chilling. Artistically, he has captured the out of control intensity of the era known as "bleeding Kansas", but also how the righteousness of one man has too often shaped and warped American politics.

Curry terrifyingly shows the face of religious fanaticism infecting the soul of John Brown. His eyes are ablaze with God-like wrath, and like a giant Moses parting the red sea, his outstretched arms form a cross symbolizing his own crucifixion for the sins of others. He is the zealot gone mad, convinced he will be the one to lead the nation to destruction, but ultimately rebirth and the promise land. In his left hand, John Brown holds the word of God (the Bible) while in his right, he grips a rifle aptly nicknamed the Beecher Bible.

We have more! This page only lists entries in a particular month. We encourage you to look back through our archives in this same category.

The previous archive is Politics: October 2012. The next archive is Politics: February 2013.

If you want to browse other topics, you can also check our Table of Contents. The most current posts can always be found on our Front Page.


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This is an archive page containing all of the stories posted to Kansas Free Press in one particular topic in a particular month. These stories were published in the Politics: November 2012 section.

The previous archive is Politics: October 2012. The next archive is Politics: February 2013.

The most current posts can always be found on our Front Page.

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