Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Misremembering History: NY Times Edition

THC ceased being a regular reader of the New York Times years ago.  He just couldn't take it anymore.  It wasn't the editorials, it was the news pages.  Between reporter bias, innumeracy and plain old ineptness it wasn't worth plowing through the paper each day to find the nuggets of value like the reports of John Burns from Iraq.

While looking at something else yesterday THC came across this link to a Times article, "5 Days That Left a Confederate Flag Wavering, and Likely to Fall" which reminded him why he no longer reads the paper.

Before THC tells you the problem with the article here's his position on the flying of the Confederate flag on the South Carolina capitol grounds - it shouldn't be.  Very simply it's the flag of secession and slavery and has no business flying on state grounds.  He does think that the actions by Apple and Amazon to ban selling games and other items with the flag are a really bad move.

What caught THC's eye in the Times article was this sentence:
But behind the scenes, powerful forces — capitalism, Christianity, social media, college sports and a Republican Party eager to extricate itself from the past — were converging. 
To drive home the point the article contains eight references to Republicans and one to Democrats.

This spin is typical of the Times in its role as house publication of the Democratic National Committee.

The Confederate flag was first raised by the Democrats who seceded from the Union in order to preserve slavery.  The Confederate flag was re-raised over the South Caroline State House under Democratic Governor Ernest Hollings in 1962 in support of segregation and as a symbol of defiance against court actions attacking the Jim Crow laws put into place by the Democratic party across the South.  You may be familiar with Ernest Hollings as he went on to become Democratic Senator from South Carolina from 1966 until 2005 and during that period his actions as governor seemed to be no problem for Democrats nationwide.

The governor who first proposed moving the Confederate flag from atop the Capitol was David Beasley, a Republican, in the mid-1990s.  In part because of his position on the flag he was defeated in his bid for reelection by a Democrat, Jim Hodges, who opposed the flag removal and was effusively congratulated after his victory by then-President Bill Clinton who, as Governor of Arkansas had signed a bill in 1987 approving a state flag commemorating the Confederacy.

Towards the end the article refers to "The state’s black United States senator, the Republican Tim Scott".  The Republican Tim Scott is the first African-American to be elected to the U.S. Senate from the South by either party since 1881 and the first African-American to ever be elected to both the House of Representatives and Senate.  In 2010, Senator Scott started his national career by gaining the Republican nomination for the congressional district centered on Charleston.  To do so he ran as the Tea Party backed insurgent to defeat Strom Thurmond's son in the Republican primary.

So in Times World we have a history making black Republican U.S. Senator and an Indian-American woman Republican Governor (Nikki Haley) who somehow managed to get elected statewide by South Carolina Republicans but it's the Republicans who are trying to extricate themselves from the past?  There's enough problematic past to go around for both parties but the Times reference is just nonsense.

THC suggests that it is the authors of the article, Michael Barbaro and Jonathan Martin, who need to extricate themselves from the bonds of ignorance.

1 comment:

  1. Yeah, but the NYT cooking pages are great! JB