The “Republicans are racist!” line is so tired and overused these days I’m almost bored by it. Still, the pundits over at MSNBC never cease to amaze me (via NRO):
Rush Limbaugh would have sided with the confederacy during the Civil War, according to MSNBC analyst Dorian Warren. Warren, a Columbia professor and fellow at the progressive Roosevelt Institute, explained that Limbaugh “represents the Confederacy. He would have been on that side that went to war around the question of slavery.”
Warren went on to argue that Limbaugh, not the Left, obsesses over race, claiming that the talk-radio host’s rhetoric during the debate over Obamacare demonstrates that “he’s the one who’s racializing when there is no race there.”
He was responding to Limbaugh’s criticism last week of President Obama’s remarks on the Trayvon Martin shooting — Limbaugh had argued that Obama’s impromptu speech was designed to stir racial division in America, and said that the racial narrative today diminishes the importance of America’s willingness to go to war over slavery.
This charge is baseless, libelous and completely unfounded. First, has Rush Limbaugh ever said on his radio program or in public that he supports the institution of slavery? No. And second, has he ever said that he wished the Confederacy won the Civil War (or, for that matter, that if he was alive during the nineteenth century) he would have taken up arms against the Union North? No. In other words, it’s a complete non sequitur to say that because Limbaugh thinks the president is exacerbating racial tensions in America, he therefore somehow supports race-based slavery. This is ridiculous.
Beyond the absurd notion that Rush Limbaugh “represents the Confederacy” -- these comments are indefensible, by the way -- Democrats’ willingness to engage in revisionist history (which is exactly what I think is going on here) is simply breathtaking. This is a veiled attack on Republicans everywhere. For the record, the Republican Party was founded on the precepts of natural rights and eventual abolitionism. Republicans were swept into office during the 1860 elections in large part to halt the spread of slavery into the western territories and to place it (in Lincoln’s words) on the path to “ultimate extinction.” By contrast, Democrats defended slavery for generations, seceded from the Union on this issue, and vehemently opposed Civil Rights legislation consistently and unapologetically for hundreds of years. Of course, these facts are irrelevant to bitter Leftists, many of whom thrive on demonizing Republicans and engaging in ad hominem attacks to win political arguments.
Go back if you have time and listen to Elbert Guillory set the historical record straight and indict his former party for gross revisionism. Who knows? You might be surprised by what you hear.