STUCK ON THIS STUPID notion that the Tea Party is racist or has racist elements seem unable to see the situation from the different perspective they demand of you.
The Founders did struggle to eliminate slavery. At the time of the founding, slavery had been an institution in the New World for a longer period of time than has passed since the founding to today.
There was a great deal of effort, intellectual, commercial, and physical put into the elimination of slavery — which, by the way, still exists in certain parts of the world. That effort had to over come more than 300 years of practice in this hemisphere (among Europeans — the practice among the natives had lasted even longer). And, yet, change was set in motion at the founding that, four score and seven years later, ended slavery as a state-supported institution.
Today, we have another struggle ongoing for freedom. It seeks to return to practices and institutions that were in effect as recently as fifty years ago. We have only two generations of idiocy and ignorance to overcome, and yet we have made considerable progress in only two election cycles.
In one sense, we have had to overcome similar anti-liberty prejudices and habits that the abolitionists faced in the early Nineteenth Century.
I would only ask those who hear, “Return to constitutional principles” and their mental filters translate that into “return to slavery, with slaves counted as 3/5 as a person”* to exert a little empathy for the process people have to go through. The founders had 300 years of pratice and tradition to overcome the prejudices of slaver. We have to overcome the idiocy that has been indoctrinated into your thick skulls in only a couple of generations, and yet the fight somehow seems far harder.
* When your mind makes this translation, you are displaying a knee-jerk reaction founded in the deepest, most malignant kind of ignorance. The 3/5 rule was instituted in order to prevent southern states from claiming slaves as members of the population or as voters when it came to the census or the apportionment of taxes and federal monies. It seemed hardly fair to claim someone who was in the country unwillingly, and immured in involuntary servitude to further serve the purposes of his slave masters by being counted as just another citizen. The move was, in short, an anti-slavery maneuver that sought to deny slave-holders this benefit of their odious practice.