What of the Civil War?

Are We Living American Mythology?

On January 11, 2022 United States President Joe Biden offered a speech in Atlanta, Georgia which has received much attention in the weeks since.  

In addition to referring to the recent movement within conservative states to restrict voting rights as ‘Jim Crow 2.0’ the most controversial quote from his speech made additional and very direct reference to our recent Civil Rights and Voting Rights history.  He asked US elected officials, How do want to be remembered?

‘At consequential moments in history, they present a choice: Do you want be on the side of Dr, King or George Wallace?  Do you want to be on the side of John Lewis or Bull Connor? Do you want to be on the side of Abraham Lincoln or Jefferson Davis?’ 

Read the complete speech by President Joe Biden

The reaction from conservative leadership was immediate.  The next day, Senator Mitch McConnell said during his reaction, ‘I did not recognize the man at the podium yesterday. … The president’s rant, rant, yesterday was incoherent, incorrect and beneath his office,” So stated McConnell from the Senate floor.

See Senator McConnell’s reaction on the Senate Floor

We’re asking what we think are several key questions this hour.  Those who’ve seen video of both President Biden’s speech and Senator McConnell’s reaction understand that the President’s remarks weren’t literally a ‘rant’.  Is McConnell counting on Americans not to access the literal speech? What’s the history in this country of reactionary rhetoric to manipulate voters?  Turns out there is a rich history of such misleading, going back to the decades before the Civil War. 

We ask whether it’s appropriate for the President to reference civil rights history in his speech?  Scott says yes and it is an excellent use of historical reference at a time when many Americans are attempting to turn bak the clock on minorities and working class people. Bruce feels that voting rights are not under threat in this country and that to say so is to mislead our neighbors to unnecessary conclusions. 

We discussed with each other where our perspectives have been cultivated and where we think this country is headed into the 2022 mid-terms. 

We also celebrate two new article series with M the Media Project, the movie premiere of our good friend Dennis Wirth and we discuss Bruce’s possible run for the State Senate.  

All in this hour of On The Rocks Politica. 


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