Our View: It’s been said on hpe.com

Feb. 20, 2013 @ 03:26 PM

Check the Enterprise’s website, hpe.com, and comment on this and other exchanges:

From Tina Dupuy, Jan. 26, “A sea change in firearms debate”:  In August 1925, The New York Times estimated 50,000-60,000 members of the Ku Klux Klan marched in a parade in our nation’s capital. It was a huge public display of the once-secret group. H.L. Mencken called it “a full mile of Klansmen and their ladies.”
The man sitting in the White House, Calvin Coolidge, was a member of the Klan. The president before him, Warren Harding, was also a noted Klansman. The fraternity preaching pure “100 percent Americanism” (anti-Semitic, anti-Catholic, anti-immigrant, anti-non-white) boasted of five million members — nearly 15 percent of the population in the 1920s. They were in positions of power. They were everywhere. And here they were marching for hours around the National Mall. ...
... And this is how we’ve viewed the death grip of the NRA on our politics. “Members of Congress have ranked the NRA as the most powerful lobbying organization in the country several years in a row,” brags the NRA’s Wikipedia page citing a 1999 Fortune article. And because whatever gets repeated enough in the Beltway becomes common wisdom: You can’t do anything about the flood of guns on our streets because the NRA is the most powerful lobby in America — ever!

IN RESPONSE:
• ChuckBino: “You can’t do anything about the flood of guns on our streets because the NRA is the most powerful lobby in America — ever!”
This writer makes a great comedienne! No, Ms. Dupuy. You have it almost correct. These are two separate relatively true phrases. NRA is powerful, because we the folks support it with open enthusiastic peaceful membership. Unlike the Klan it supports the Constitution without derision, lynchings, hoods, and intimidation. It uses the power of media as do others. It is not the Klan nor a fascist group looking to indoctrinate and take over.

• Mrmike: Dupuy is no comedienne, she’s a liar. I’d like to see some proof that Coolidge and Harding were Klan supporters or Klan members. From Wikipedia:
— “Notably in an age of severe racial intolerance during the 1920s, President Harding did not hold any racial animosity, according to historian Carl S. Anthony. In a speech on Oct. 26, 1921, given in segregated Birmingham, Ala., Harding advocated civil rights for African Americans; the first president to openly advocate black political, educational, and economic equality during the 20th century.”
— “Coolidge spoke out in favor of the civil rights of African Americans and Catholics. He appointed no known members of the Ku Klux Klan to office; indeed the Klan lost most of its influence during his term. ... Coolidge repeatedly called for anti-lynching laws to be enacted, but most Congressional attempts to pass this legislation were filibustered by Southern Democrats. Coolidge appointed some African Americans to federal office.”
This is yet another dishonest attempt at re-writing history to make Republicans look bad, when in fact it was Democrats who were the racists (and many still are, but the colors have changed).
But even if they were racist, that has nothing to do with gun control today.