Ghost of Frederick Douglass Comes Out for Romney / Ryan 2012

Who could ever have guessed? Here in Ohio, Frederick Douglass, former slave, orator and statesman, has come out in favor of Governor Mitt Romney in the coming election. Douglass has been dead since 1895; but that couldn’t stop him from rising from the grave to endorse Romney and the complete Buckeye State GOP ticket. It’s a surprising turn of events for several reasons.

First of all, Douglass is…dead.

Second, the brochure handed out by a group calling itself “Women for Liberty” (treasurer: Susan Holzapfel) says Douglass was for “private wealth creation” whereas President Obama is working to “redistribute wealth.” In other words, Douglass would be for “individual freedom and success” if he was still living. (That rat, Obama? He wants to “create a culture of dependency.”)

Yeah, nothing like “private wealth creation,” circa 1818, when Douglass was born. His father, a white slave owner, got his mother, a slave, pregnant, and when mom delivered, presto, we’re talking wealth creation! Little Frederick is your son/slave and you can “create wealth” if you put him up for sale! It’s the 19th century version of “trickle down” economics.

Well, no wonder then that Deceased Douglass wants us to vote “Romney/Ryan 2012” (although, come to think of it, would his ghost really have a picture ID?) No culture of dependency for those slave owners, baby! No siree. You want your cotton picked, you pick it yourself. Isn’t that the way it worked on every plantation before 1865?

What else would Douglass “like” about today’s GOP? “Limited government.” That’s what the group that put together this flyer wants us to believe. Yeah. Don’t you hate it when, in 1954, a few “activist judges” overturn all those great state laws that denied blacks the right to sit in the front of the bus, enter restaurants, go to the movie theater, get into college, ride in the same taxi or play checkers with white folks?

It says right here on this brochure: Douglass would be for “school choice.”

Remember in the last debate when Mitt insisted states can handle health care better than the pushy federal government? No doubt the ghost of Frederick Douglass would agree. Think back, for example, to the pushy federal government that forced through the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which put the hurt on great states like Alabama and Mississippi and Louisiana and required them to start letting dark-skinned folks show up at the polls and vote. Damn the federal government, sticking its nose in where it doesn’t belong.

HOLY SHIT! Is there any way to read this brochure other than to see it as a craven attempt by forces on the right to fool a few confused swing state voters?

Are the women of “Women for Liberty” really so dense? What makes them think that Frederick Douglass would support Mitt Romney when 98% of African-Americans today do not? Do they know so little of our history that they can delude themselves into imagining that Douglass, who fought for racial equality all his life, would fail to notice the latent and blatant racism of right-wing types today? Ooooh, the scary black guy, Barack Hussein Obama, doesn’t have a birth certificate! Ooooh, he doesn’t think like a real American….

Ooooh, he’s not really one of us.

Come on, right-wing knuckleheads. You’re better than this. If you want to bring back dead people to endorse Mitt Romney, bring back Joe McCarthy. He’d be for Romney, for sure. And George Wallace. Now that’s a dead American we know would like the GOP today. And don’t overlook Pitchfork Ben Tillman! What about Marie Antoinette? She might not, technically, be a U. S. citizen, but she would love the disdain your party has for the 47%.

Susan Holzapfel, do you really believe that a man who lived through an era when Jim Crow laws were spreading like a plague — and when blacks who stood up for their rights were lynched by the hundreds — would support all the new Voter ID laws, designed with clear intent to disenfranchise as many minority voters as possible? Are you so blind as to think a former slave would side with billionaires and vote for a candidate who admits he doesn’t care about people who are down and out in American society?

We know right-wing types prefer to live in the past rather than face reality, and we also know they’re on the wrong side of history. Conservatives once stood with emperors and kings. Conservatives once stood with slave owners. Conservatives once insisted that only men should vote, then only white men, and now they hope to amend state constitutions, and the U. S. Constitution if necessary, to insure that gay Americans will never, ever marry. Oh, of course. The ghost of Frederick Douglass would be for that.

The man who fought to see the 14th Amendment added to the U. S. Constitution (guaranteeing equal protection to all citizens under state law), yeah, he’d be on the side of hate, intolerance and bigotry if he were still alive today.

Sure, “Women of Liberty.” Sure he would.