James Giago Davies: Troubled times are coming to Lakota country

James Giago Davies. Photo courtesy Native Sun News Today

Is the Democratic Party as dead as a door nail?
Troubled times are coming to Lakota country
Please don’t start tossing anvils
By James Giago Davies
Native Sun News Today Columnist

Back when George Dubya Bush’s popularity had reached an historical low, progressives speculated the impending death of the GOP.

It made sense, the country was waking up, enlightenment had been a burgeoning promise since the Founding Fathers; this was just one more stumbling block to be cleared from a path inevitably leading to a better society based on compassion and equity.

They were dead wrong.

Not that our two-party system couldn’t lose a party; it had already happened twice. Last time, the Whigs bit the dust in the 1850’s. Most Americans have no idea this party even existed, that it put three presidents in the White House, but failed as the principled opposition to the slavery-supporting Democrats.

As the conflict over slavery came to a head the factions that had come together to form the Whigs came apart, and the party died like a wisp of wind-driven smoke. But who were the Whigs?

“Democrats stood for the ‘sovereignty of the people' as expressed in popular demonstrations, constitutional conventions, and majority rule as a general principle of governing, whereas Whigs advocated the rule of law, written and unchanging constitutions, and protections for minority interests against majority tyranny.”

The rule-of-law Whigs did not want to force a civil war over slavery; the social conscience Whigs did not want to remain in a party where slavery was condoned. Every party is a platform for distinct factions who have enough shared common interest they can come together in opposition to the other party. That is how the Whigs had formed, and that is how they were replaced by the Republicans.

Initially the GOP, before it was the Grand Old Party, was driven by one issue—slavery. Liberals were the face of the GOP, but what no one recognized was who was backing these liberals. It was power and privilege, the corporate industrialists of the North, and they did not oppose slavery for ideological reasons, but for economic reasons. Then, as now, the only thing they believed in was money. They knew slavery was dead in the civilized world; Great Britain (GB) had outlawed it on the high seas. The idea GB would enter the war on the side of the South was ludicrous.

Read the rest of the story on the Native Sun News Today website: Is the Democratic Party as dead as a door nail?

(Contact James Giago Davies at skindiesel@msn.com)

Copyright permission Native Sun News

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