By Tami Jackson
Calvin Coolidge was a highly underrated president.
Coolidge was the last president to pay down the national debt and governed over a term of unrivaled economic prosperity. But further, Silent Cal deeply admired Abraham Lincoln, rejected the virulent Ku Klux Klan, and supported legislation which would improve the condition of blacks, Indians, and recent immigrants.
As Charles C. Johnson wrote in his fine book, Why Coolidge Matters: Leadership Lessons from America’s Most Underrated President:
Coolidge’s purpose was to help these groups make themselves “100 percent American”…in that pursuit, the president argued for a common brotherhood of Americans in a citizenship that rested on ideals, not race, because in a republican form of government there could be no racial hierarchy.
Coolidge expounded on this point before an audience that included the crown prince of Sweden: “As we do not recognize any inferior races, so we do not recognize any superior races.”
Johnson further cites Coolidge:
Coolidge strongly rejected racial prejudice in whatever form it reared himself. In determining a man’s worth, he argued, “we shall have to look beyond the outward manifestations of race and creed,” because God had “not bestowed upon any race a monopoly of patriotism and character.”
To Coolidge, race had no bearing on a man’s character, and therefore racist beliefs and behavior were hostile toward the Union.
“The Nation,” he argued at Howard University in 1924, “has need of all that can be contributed to it through the best efforts of all its citizens.”
Kurt L. Schmoke wrote in Politico on May 8:
The 30th president, Republican Calvin Coolidge, was a major supporter of Howard University and an overlooked figure in advancing the cause of racial equality in the United States. In one of his earliest acts as president, Coolidge proposed and persuaded Congress to pass an appropriation bill that reinforced the unique relationship between Howard and the federal government.
In his First Annual Address to Congress in 1923 he wrote: “About half a million dollars is recommended for medical courses at Howard University to help contribute to the education of 500 colored doctors needed each year.” This appropriation was to grow over the years, leading to the production of health care and other professionals who would stimulate the growth of an African-American middle class and develop leaders in all walks of life, nationally and internationally.
Calvin Coolidge repeatedly spoke of “the negro” in every one of his State of the Union addresses. And as Charles Johnson noted:
In 1923, he reminded Congress that blacks’ rights are “just as sacred as those of any other citizen” and encouraged Congress to “exercise all its powers of prevention and punishment against the hideous crime of lynching” and to “formulate a better policy [of racial reconciliation] for mutual understanding and confidence.”
The Left has systematically absconded the banner of leading the way in civil rights, when in fact quite the opposite is true. 150 years ago it was Republicans who freed the slaves. And it has been Republicans who truly believe a person’s worth is determined by character, not color.
It’s high time we begin correcting the record: The Left and the Democrats continually foster an attitude of bitterness and victimisation within the black community so that they might control that voting block. The race card is played often, convincing those on the Dem Plantation that no one judges them on the content of their character.
The Left lies.
Conservatives, such as Silent Cal Coolidge, have and will continue to understand a man’s worth is given by God, irrespective of color, and thus is inalienable.