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Jim Crow and the Democrats

To the editor:

I find it ironic that the Democrats are accusing Republicans of voter suppression and comparing them to Jim Crow. Jim Crow was the name given to the laws enacted by Southern Democrats after the Civil War to suppress the newly allowed Black vote.

John Lester, Calvin Jones, Richard Reed, James Crowe, Frank McCord, and John Kennedy were the six Confederate officers and Democrats who created the Klu Klux Klan. Johnson became president after the assassination of Lincoln. He also was a Democrat and was the one who got the Black Code Laws passed while Congress was in recess.

When Congress returned, the Republicans were furious with Johnson’s actions. They passed the 1866 Civil Rights Act over Johnson’s veto. It gave Blacks the same rights as Whites. The KKK used terror and murderous night raids against Blacks who dared to vote, own land, attend school, and even worship.

“The Free State of Jones” is a movie that you should watch. It is a true and factual account of a coalition of Whites and Blacks in Mississippi fighting against the Confederates. It also illustrates how their Republican votes were not counted after the war. Make sure you watch past the ending credits, because it has the real photos of the people it’s based on.

The 1964 Civil Rights Act was President Kennedy’s idea but introduced by President Johnson –both Democrats. However, a 74-day filibuster was led by Southern Democrats to try and stop its vote on the floor. Blacks seem to think it was the Democrats, but ironically it never would of passed without the Republicans. Elections, like past history has shown, need to be fair and honest to ensure our democracy.

Drop boxes and mail-in ballots are convenient but can easily be fraught with fraud. Voter registration is tantamount to honest elections. Convenience was not an option in 1868. Blacks who had been freed wanted to vote and some walked twenty miles to do so. Least we can do is take the time for our country to have honest elections over convenience.

Dr. John J. Conrad,

Salem

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