We’re going with the “21st century Jim Crow” talk again, I see.
Normally, we should give some latitude to President Joe Biden when he trots out that label. After all, he’s one of the few politicians alive and active who enthusiastically worked with the architects of the 20th century Jim Crow on their agenda.
(In fact, Biden created an outrage during the early stages of the 2020 campaign when he said his cooperation with arch-segregationists such as cretinous former Mississippi Sen. James Eastland in the 1970s hearkened back to an era of “civility” in Washington.)
In a speech in Philadelphia on Tuesday that was heavy on invective and light on specifics, the president again called election integrity part of the “big lie” and said it was “the most significant test of our democracy since the Civil War.”
He didn’t quite get the irony that, by using Nazi imagery when he invoked the “big lie,” he had already mentioned two unquestionably bigger tests of our democracy than voter ID laws — World War II and the Jim Crow South. (Pineapple on pizza is also a bigger test of our democracy than election integrity legislation, but that’s a story for another day.)
And speaking of the “21st century Jim Crow,” a prominent black Republican says Biden and his party can find it in the very places they hold power.
In an appearance on Fox News’ “Outnumbered” on Wednesday, John James, a GOP candidate for Senate in Michigan in 2018 and 2020, noted the irony of the president’s speech.
“I think it’s kind of rich for Joe Biden to talk about this when he was elected to the Senate in 1972 and actually advocated for busing,” James said, talking about Biden’s work with segregationists on killing busing at the federal level.
He then said where he thought one could still find the vestiges of segregation.
“You want to see 21st century Jim Crow? Come to Detroit, come see where separate but equal is actually employed,” James said. “Come and see where south of Eight Mile, taxes are racist, where homeowners are penalized for being one of the highest tax areas in the country.
“Come see our schools where we have separate but equal. Come see where children are impeded from their growth because of their ZIP code and Democrats are continuing to not hold teachers unions accountable for their failure to prepare our children for the future.
“Come to Detroit, where south of Eight Mile, young mothers are incentivized to stay unmarried to get their welfare and needed … incentives and care. Come and take a look at what Democrats around the country in urban areas have done.”
It wasn’t just Detroit. “If you want to see modern-day Jim Crow,” James said, “go to Baltimore, go to Chicago, go to St. Louis, where they’re advocating for defunding the police that put black people in vulnerable — Democrats are going in their same old trope.
“They’re not offering solutions. They’re fixing the blame, they’re not fixing the problem. The only thing I’m seeing here that is as old as the Civil War is the fact that Democrats continue to exploit black people for their own gains.”
Well, how about it, Joe?
Want to go to Detroit? Want to go to Baltimore? Chicago? How about one of the blue states with election laws that are stricter than the “21st century Jim Crow” legislative packages in Georgia and Texas?
The only reason election security has suddenly become equivalent to segregation is that that kind of language is the only way their electoral power grab seems remotely tenable.
If you want to see real segregation, however, look at cities where liberal policies have hurt minorities. Look at the lack of educational opportunities and the effects of the handout culture.
Joe Biden should recognize his party’s handiwork. As someone who played a role at the end of the 20th century Jim Crow, he’s done a great job continuing the 21st century version — something he should consider before giving another speech with the same shameful rhetoric as Tuesday’s.
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