the important and the not-so-important, horribly conflated.

Before Deliverance, Ugliness

In politics on March 21, 2010 at 5:00 am

The Tea Partyers are not, on the whole, racist—but they are uniformly and despicably silent when their fellow protesters invoke 60’s-era attacks on Civil Rights.

This, coming before Sunday’s health care vote, is a new low:

Rep. Andre Carson, D-Ind., told a reporter that as he left the Cannon House Office Building with Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., a leader of the civil rights era, some among the crowd chanted “the N-word, the N-word, 15 times.” Both Carson and Lewis are black, and Lewis spokeswoman Brenda Jones also said that it occurred.

“It was like going into the time machine with John Lewis,” said Carson, a large former police officer who said he wasn’t frightened but worried about the 70-year-old Lewis, who is twice his age. “He said it reminded him of another time.”

[James] Clyburn, who led fellow black students in integrating South Carolina’s public facilities a half century ago, called the behavior “absolutely shocking.”

“I heard people saying things today that I have not heard since March 15, 1960, when I was marching to try to get off the back of the bus,” Clyburn told reporters.

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