Archive for the ‘Civil Rights’ Category

A Slave In the White House

Posted By Levi

January 10th, 2012 8:11pm

The Daily Show Jon Stewart had an interesting interview with Elizabeth Dowling Taylor, author of A Slave in the White House: Paul Jennings and the Madisons. The book highlights the life of Paul Jennings who was born into slavery on the plantation of James and Dolley Madison in Virginia. When Madison became the 4th President of the United States, he took Jennings to the White House as his personal slave. He was only 10 years old. Yes, it may seem hard to believe, but several of our early presidents and Founding Fathers were slave owners. Also, James Madison is remembered as the man who wrote the U.S. Constitution. In his will, Madison bequeathed all his 100 slaves to his wife. Jennings expected to be freed upon the death of Madison but Dolley refused to set him free even though Jennings had married a slave woman at a nearby plantation and had children. So Jennings’ wife and children lived on a separate plantation owned by a separate master. Jennings decided to purchase his own fr Read More

“The Problem We All Live With”

Posted By Levi

August 25th, 2011 4:10pm

Ruby  Bridges visited the White House recently to look at this Norman Rockwell painting, The Problem We All Live With,  which hangs in the West Wing near the President’s Oval Office. Here is the actual photograph of the 6 year-old as she was escorted by federal agents into an elementary school in New Orleans following the historic Supreme Court ruling declaring segregation in public education illegal. It is strange that some people  find it odd that the President would hang the painting in the White House. Yes, the  painting depicts one of the ugliest periods in our nation’s history. But it’s a fact, it did happen. On November 15, 1960 The New York Times reported: “Some 150 white, mostly housewives and teenage youths, clustered along the sidewalks across from the William Franz School when pupils marched in at 8:40 am. One youth chanted “Two, Four, Six, Eight, we don’t want to segregate; eight, six, four, two, we don’t want a chigeroo.” “Forty minut Read More

Slavery & the Civil War – Part 2

Posted By Levi

April 24th, 2011 9:58am

In part 1, I attempted to show that slavery was the main cause of the Civil War. What is most remarkable is that 150 years after the War, crazy talk about secession, nullification and taxes- issues that divided the nation at the time, are becoming fashionable once again in the South. In particular, Republicans and Tea Party supporters claim that the federal government has become too big, too oppressive and too intrusive. They claimed that big government is the cause of much of the nation’s problems and since government doesn’t do anything good it must be reduced in size. There is much talk about nullification. Nullification is the once discredited idea that states have the right to nullify or reject federal laws they don’t like. Of course, states do not have the power to reject federal laws. Article VI of the U.S. Constituion states that Acts of Congress “shall be the supreme law of the land…anything in the Constitution or laws of any State to the contrary notwit Read More