Monday, June 27, 2022

Pretty Sure He Meant It

From Salon:

On Saturday morning, Texas Senator John Cornyn tweeted a racist comment along with a share of former President Barack Obama‘s statement regarding Friday’s Supreme Court ruling to reverse Roe v. Wade.

Obama, making his statement on Twitter on Friday morning shortly after the ruling was handed down, said “Today, the Supreme Court not only reversed nearly 50 years of precedent, it relegated the most intensely personal decision someone can make to the whims of politicians and ideologues—attacking the essential freedoms of millions of Americans.”

The following morning, Cornyn shared that statement from Obama to his own Twitter account adding “Now do Plessy vs Ferguson/Brown vs Board of Education.”

Brown v. Board of Education, ruled on by the Supreme Court in 1954, did historical justice in wiping away the 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson ruling, making “separate but equal” rightfully unconstitutional.

Following Cornyn’s initial tweet, which received tremendous heated backlash, he fired off another one saying “Thank goodness some SCOTUS precedents are overruled.”

“Let’s help out less intelligent fellow Americans out,” one commenter said in response to Cornyn’s initial tweet. “Plessy stood as law of the land longer than Roe. That was [John Cornyn’s] point. Now if liberals are arguing Brown v. Board of Ed was wrongly ruled because of long standing precedent, then they should openly say so.”

Oh, I get it.  His commenter is saying it’s not about reinstating Plessy and overturning Brown; oh no, it just means that some long-standing precedents can be overturned and it’s about time, too.  It has nothing to do with segregation; how can you even think that?  Uh huh.

I don’t know how anyone could read Mr. Cornyn’s initial tweet and not think that he was advocating overturning Brown v. Board of Education.  If he is advocating overturning long-standing precedents, there are a bunch of  rulings that he could have brought up, such Citizens United v. FEC, that unleashed corporate money on political campaigns, or District of Columbia v. Heller, which turned the Second Amendment into a permit for the O.K. Corral on the streets of America.  But he went with the ruling that finally ended racial segregation in public schools; a ruling that was harmless in its nature and its intent and affirming a right to equality that had been denied.

It’s my nature to give someone at least the benefit of the doubt and see how he and his supporters try to get out of the impression that the gentlebeing from Texas isn’t advocating a return to segregation in the schools.  After all, the Texas Republican Party voted last week to support a plank in their platform calling for the repeal of the 1965 Voting Rights Act.  So I’d love to hear his explanation.

But the cynic in me — and it’s been getting a workout recently — is pretty sure he meant what he said.

One bark on “Pretty Sure He Meant It

  1. Actually, Brown vs Board of Education did not overturn all of Plessy vs Ferguson, as it only applied to segregation in schools. The rest of the “separate but equal” doctrine was overturned by Federal civil rights laws that were passed later as a result of the Freedom Riders, sits-in in lunch rooms, the MLKjr actions et al. Brown was a beginning of the end, as D-Day was in WWII.

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