By Jonathan Bean | Thursday July 27, 2017 at 1:35 PM PDT | 0 Comments
Throughout American history, government at all levels has used race to categorize, enslave, segregate, regulate human behavior, and limit immigration with “nationality” quotas that served as substitutes for race. Categorizing by race was essential to racist agendas.
In response, classical liberal civil rights activists struggled to eliminate government-mandated racial categories. They were anything but naive: racism was real, categories or no categories, but the government stamp of approval made things worse–and caused constant mischief in the ever increasing addition of group categories in the census or in immigration statutes. The only feasible solution was the most radical one: the complete elimination of government racial categories. Individuals might discriminate but would no longer have the support of the State. With time, classical liberals felt, the irrationality of racism and xenophobia would give way to better human relations.
Tags: affirmative action, Black capitalism, civil rights, classical liberty, colorblindness, Constitution, Criminal Justice, Detroit, Detroit riot (1967), Frederick Douglass, James Forten, Louis Marshall, Loving, Martin Luther King Jr., NAACP, Police, Politics, politics of crisis, Richard Nixon, riots, Rule of Law
By Robert Higgs | Tuesday October 25, 2016 at 10:04 AM PDT | Comments Off on Whether You Know It or Not, You Are a Tax Slave
In the antebellum South, it was not uncommon for slaves to rent themselves from their masters. As a young man, Frederick Douglass did so, for example. His owner gave him leave to go out on his own, to find employment where he could, and to pocket the pay he received for such work, except...
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Tags: Frederick Douglass, Taxation, Taxes
By Jonathan Bean | Monday March 21, 2016 at 3:33 PM PDT | Comments Off on Say No to Reparations: Remembering Slavery, Forgetting the Classical-Liberal Values that Abolished It
Advocates of reparations for the descendants of African American slaves recently challenged socialist Bernie Sanders to embrace their cause, which he refused to do. A leading advocate of reparations, Atlantic contributor Ta-Nehisi Coates, criticizes Sanders for placing class-based politics before race. Lost in the unending debate over reparations is a key point: group reparations ignore the...
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Tags: American History, Christianity, civil rights, Constitution, desegegration, Frederick Douglass, Liberty, NAACP, Quakers, Racism, Reparations, segregation, Slavery, William Lloyd Garrison
By Mary Theroux | Wednesday February 29, 2012 at 4:43 PM PDT | 21 Comments
If it’s the case that we study history in order to learn from it, let’s pause to consider the story of 13-year old Jada Williams on this final day of African American History Month. When she was recently assigned to read and write an essay on the autobiography of Frederick Douglass, the message of...
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Tags: African American history month, American History, black history month, Education, Family, Frederick Douglass, Jada Williams, Presidential Power, Racism, Urban Issues, Welfare
By Jonathan Bean | Tuesday October 20, 2009 at 1:28 PM PDT | 7 Comments
In a recent op-ed for the Wall Street Journal, Rush Limbaugh defends his record (“I am not a racist”) and further points out the double standard allowing left-liberals off the hook for statements that are clearly racist. Limbaugh’s defense highlights several problems for libertarians and conservatives: First, playing defense 24/7 is no way to...
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Tags: American History, Branch Rickey, Civil Liberties, civil rights, Clarence Thomas, classical liberalism, Corruption, disinformation, Education, FDR, Frederick Douglass, Integrity, Media, NFL, Personal Liberty, Propaganda, Racism, Rush Limbaugh, St. Louis Rams, Woodrow Wilson, Zora Neale Hurston
By Mary Theroux | Monday July 27, 2009 at 12:30 PM PDT | 3 Comments
I agree that the Henry Louis Gates arrest incident has been misinterpreted by conservatives: one indeed has the right to security in one’s home, and should not be subject to arrest or harassment therein.
Tags: Africa, American History, Barack Obama, Cambridge police, Civil Liberties, Criminal Justice, Drugs, Frederick Douglass, H.L. Mencken, Henry Louis Gates, Law, Lysander Spooner, Martin Luther King, Personal Liberty, Police, Politics, Racism, Russia, Socialism, Taxation, The State, Urban Issues, W. E. B. Du Bois
By Jonathan Bean | Monday July 6, 2009 at 1:39 PM PDT | 0 Comments
Over at National Review Online, I have a column entitled “The Party of Lincoln, and of Douglass: Rediscovering Frederick Douglass in the Age of Obama.” It begins by explaining the importance—and misunderstood nature—of Douglass’s Fourth of July Oration (1852). Historians treat it as a denunciation of America, pure and simple. In fact, the oration...
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Tags: American History, Constitution, Damon Root, Frederick Douglass, Immigration, Jonathan Bean, Natural Law, Race and Liberty in America, Racism, Religion