Case Closed: Tea Party Ex-Chair Issues Racist Rant in ‘Colored People’ Letter to Abraham Lincoln

photo-black-faceOn Wednesday, Mark Williams, the outgoing chairman of Tea Party Express — the astroturf group operated by the Republican Party PR firm Russo Marsh & Rogers that organized the three, secretly corporate-funded nationwide tea party bus tours last year — made headlines by calling the NAACP “professional race baiters” and a “vile racist group.” On Thursday, he upped the ante by posting a satiric letter (available, at least for now, on his blog at from the “Colored People” of today to Pres. Abraham Lincoln:

Dear Mr. Lincoln

We Colored People have taken a vote and decided that we don’t cotton to that whole emancipation thing. Freedom means having to work for real, think for ourselves, and take consequences along with the rewards. That is just far too much to ask of us Colored People and we demand that it stop!

“Mr. Lincoln, you were the greatest racist ever. We had a great gig. Three squares, room and board, all our decisions made by someone else. Please repeal the 13th and 14th Amendments and let us get back to where we say that belong.”
– Outgoing Tea Party Express Chairman Mark Williams

In fact we held a big meeting and took a vote in Kansas City this week. We voted to condemn a political revival of that old abolitionist spirit called the ‘tea party movement’.

The tea party position to “end the bailouts” for example is just silly. Bailouts are just big money welfare and isn’t that what we want all Colored People to strive for? What kind of racist would want to end big money welfare? What they need to do is start handing the bail outs directly to us Colored People! Of course, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People is the only responsible party that should be granted the right to disperse the funds.

And the ridiculous idea of “reduce[ing] the size and intrusiveness of government.” What kind of world would we have is I ever to control and be responsible for my life own? As Colored People we must have somebody care for us otherwise we would be on our own, have to think for ourselves and make decisions and if you do not agree than there is not enough Colored in your People, as we labeled Ken Gladney [source]

The racist tea parties also demand that the government “stop the out of control spending.” Again, they directly target Colored People. That means we Colored People would have to compete for jobs like everybody else and that is just not right.

Perhaps the most racist point of all in the tea parties is their demand that government “stop raising our taxes.” That is outrageous! Totally racist! The tea party expects Colored People to be productive members of society, especially when our mission is to convince them that progress is impossible for them based on the color of their skin?

Mr. Lincoln, you were the greatest racist ever. We had a great gig. Three squares, room and board, all our decisions made by someone else. Please repeal the 13th and 14th Amendments and let us get back to where we say that belong.


Ben Jealous, Tom’s Nephew National Association for the Advancement of Colored People Head Colored Person

On a much more trivial level, this is more evidence that conservatives should avoid trying to be funny. What conservatives find humorous — jokes at the expense of people perceived to be less entitled than themselves, which is pretty much anyone who isn’t a straight, white Protestant male — is just not funny to normal people.


  • Bob
    July 16, 2010 - 8:10 am | Permalink

    Judging by your comments you are either another liberal hack trying to twist the facts or you just can’t understand the point of the letter.
    Went to liberal/democrat/communist run public schools didn’t you??

    Any fool can see the writer did not intend it to be funny!! He is trying to provoke you into THINKING and really rationalizing the issue for more than 1/2 a second.
    Sorry, I almost forgot, public schools don’t teach rational thought do they??
    You would have to be astonishingly stupid to think it was meant to be funny!! Since it so obviously was NOT!!

    People like you make being an American almost embarrassing!

  • Madison
    July 16, 2010 - 9:14 am | Permalink

    Which Klan Kollege did you attend, Bob?

  • Meka
    July 16, 2010 - 9:25 am | Permalink

    Tea Partiers never learn. No one their leaders are taking their stroll to Easy Street, on their backs.

  • Sam
    July 16, 2010 - 9:41 am | Permalink

    I’ve always wondered why the NAACP didn’t change their name a long time ago. Really, who uses the term “colored” anymore. And if that’s your name, how can you be mad when someone else uses it against you.

  • July 16, 2010 - 9:44 am | Permalink

    I think these “tea baggers party members” are just mean. They have an IQ that matches asparagus. They are like the Klan…mean, cowardly people.

  • July 16, 2010 - 9:55 am | Permalink

    More than his use of the word “colored people,” it’s what he says about black people — that they’re lazy, can’t think for themselves, etc., that is racist. These lies are as vile as they are demonstrably untrue, which goes without saying. It’s shocking that anyone believes this bullshit in 2010, and even more unbelievable that someone so high up in the world of tea baggery would post these dark, ugly thoughts on his blog. He obviously wanted attention. Now he’s got it.

  • another liberal hack
    July 16, 2010 - 10:25 am | Permalink

    This is how they talk all the time when they are in private. They actually believe these things. I’m from Texas, where I was buried up to my neck in it. This ‘satire’ would have been tolerated 80 years ago, but today, it is just called racist, Bob.

  • Bonny
    July 16, 2010 - 10:36 am | Permalink

    Case closed, we’ve found a prejudice article writer that thinks on the basis of one person’s words he can claim that hundreds of thousands of people are racist.

  • July 16, 2010 - 10:46 am | Permalink

    It is the mood of the tea baggers that cause such articles to be written. If he didn’t think you were with him…the writer wouldn’t have written such vile words about a race of people. Tea Baggers set the mood and ugly things happen.

  • majii
    July 16, 2010 - 10:50 am | Permalink

    I would expect Bob to defend these statements especially if he’s not African American. Bob, I grew up under segregation in America, and I witnessed the civil rights movement firsthand. You have no idea of what it is like to have to deal with racism on a constant basis, even today. If you did, you’d definitely be offended by Williams’ statement. That you defend his words so stridently indicates that you think African Americans and others shouldn’t be offended, and/or that you share Williams’ POV.

  • John
    July 16, 2010 - 11:01 am | Permalink

    Bonny, if this were an isolated incident, I’d agree wholeheartedly with your sentiment. Unfortunately, these despicable views have been expressed innumerable times by both everyday members of the Tea Party and by its leaders and founders. It’s not just one ‘bad apple.’ There is an insipid sickness in the roots of this tree.

  • noah
    July 16, 2010 - 11:22 am | Permalink


    Sorry, when you said “communist schools,” were you trying to be funny too?

  • Anonymous
    July 16, 2010 - 11:34 am | Permalink

    His name was Robert Paulson.

    Go to hell Bob.

  • July 16, 2010 - 11:36 am | Permalink

    @noah: Public schools are technically socialist – in every country but the US, “socialist” is not a bad word, it simply refers to any institution that’s not private. So public schools are socialist, as are fire and police departments, public libraries, public hospitals, etc.

  • Rowan
    July 16, 2010 - 11:43 am | Permalink

    What evidence do you have that Tea Partiers perceive anyone who isn’t a straight, white Protestant male to be less entitled than themselves?

    You’re even more of bigot than the Tea Partiers.

  • S
    July 16, 2010 - 1:01 pm | Permalink

    Do people seriously find that “Obama the Magic Negro” song funny?

    Is it just a coincidence that the Dixiecrats and republicans wanted to make segregation a states rights issue?

    Is it just a coincidence that Martin Luther King, Jr. was trained at Highlander Research and Education Center, a so-called liberal-training school and one of his counselors was Bayard Rustin, a homosexual? And the only openly gay and black members of Congress are all democrats?

    Is it just a coincidence that Martin Luther King, Jr. and George Soros were both financially supported by Quakers? And the only Quaker in Congress (Rush Holt) is a democrat, one of the most liberal.

  • Joe Oolong
    July 16, 2010 - 1:19 pm | Permalink

    Hear hear! Black people are just as entitled as white people in America.

    It took a hundred years, from the Civil War to the Civil Rights movement, for blacks to be emancipated from slavery. It took only a few decades for them to be enslaved again–for their votes, by the Left, who has given them nothing of value since the first half of the Johnson Administration.

    Can anyone here name a single program espoused or enacted by the Democratic Party that has helped black people? That has reduced crime in urban communities? That has encouraged black families to stay together and kept black men out of prison? That has improved black high school graduation rates? One single program?

    I humbly offer a cup of tea to each of my brothers and sisters of color. The government has never done anything for you but offer you a pittance to keep the Man in power. Around here, we don’t wait around for politicians who promise the moon and deliver nothing.

    We solve our own problems–which we can do better with a government too small to get in our way. You already know you can do it–hang out with us. Don’t let your Democrat masters keep you on the Plantation another day. (And if country music ain’t your thing, don’t worry about it–I don’t like it either.)

  • Madison
    July 16, 2010 - 2:22 pm | Permalink

    Joe Oolong – What’s so deeply racist about your post is your notion that black people need or want government help — and that they need or want Democrats or anybody to tell them what to think. In this latter bit, you’re projecting your own need to be spoonfed talking points by Limbaugh, Beck and Hannity. (I’m SHOCKED you didn’t mention flat screen TVs. Try to keep up with what Fox News wants you to say, please.)

    That said, opening the public schools to all in the 1960s gave African Americans access to the same educational opportunities that were only available only to whites previously. Federal anti-discrimination laws have prevented racists, like yourself, from openly refusing to hire black people. And, yes, federal poverty programs have helped millions of Americans of all races rise up above the conditions they were born into. All across the country, but especially in the South, black people are comfortably ensconced in the middle class and there are thousands of black millionaires — both concepts that were unthinkable just 50 years ago.

    And, yes, that never would have happened if racists like you and the tea baggers were in charge. Liberals of all races and religions fought and some even died in the struggle against conservative racists to end segregation.

    Today, it’s only in the twisted minds of racists like you, Mark Williams and others that blacks are dependent on liberals, Democrats or the government — because, you fucking idiot, millions of black people are liberals and they are Democrats. And unlike dittohead rightwingers, liberals don’t need anyone to tell them what to think.

    You’re not “solving your own problems” if your parents are on Medicare and Social Security. You’re not solving your own problems if your kids go to public schools. And you’re not solving your own problems if you depend on police, fire and emergency services from the government. You’re not solving your own problems when you drive on the public streets and visit a public park. Those are socialist institutions, my friend — and you and the tea baggers are all soaking in it.

    All that African Americans — in fact, all normal Americans — want from right wing bigots like you and the tea baggers is for you to shut the fuck up with whining and bitching and get out of the way and let us get this great country back on its feet after you Bush lovers nearly brought it to its knees.

  • Lori
    July 16, 2010 - 3:36 pm | Permalink

    Unfortunately, as is the case with all organizations, the issue gets lost in the hype caused by extreme views of some members. There are narrow, extreme views held by both Tea Party and NAACP members, and each group gets stereotyped into the identity of its most vocal members, who are usually the most bizzare. As a result, legitimate discussion of issues such as our massive national debt falls by the wayside. Too bad we can’t set aside the judgmental rants, foul language, and stereotyping to look for real answers to real problems.

  • Darlene
    July 16, 2010 - 4:41 pm | Permalink

    @ Madison

    You have mastered the use of profanity. Kudos.

    Now, I can’t speak for all “right wing bigots and tea baggers” (more colorful language from some obviously smarter than the average bear), but I simply want the same rules to apply to all. How’s that racist?

  • Cycieties
    July 16, 2010 - 5:30 pm | Permalink

    Hippocracy in it’s greatest form. This and the article I posted basically prove the point of the two articles.

  • marshall
    July 17, 2010 - 2:15 am | Permalink

    I was born in the south and i know the real history of this country and the subject of Slavery – lived most of my live in the NW…. yes I’m the tea party – as for what the tea party is – not what some of another group has hi jacked… I care not what party your in, just what you stand for and what your plan of action to rebuild this country is!

    I vote for the person that I believe has the best plan for the long range goals of this land – not the greed of my pocket book or party power… you claim your about freedom, but yet all i hear is mud talking shit – what free thinking idea’s are you putting out to win the hearts of others, no it’s use one group to attack some fools and the others to help pin them down as the rest of the people get the little minds washed in dirty water until their poor brains fail them come ballet day.

    I preform research on the subject before I open my lips – as my grand dad use to say – never trust anyone that makes their money from your hardship ;-(

  • Bodhi Cat
    July 17, 2010 - 5:34 am | Permalink

    The NAACP was formed in 1909, when the term “colored people” was acceptable. It has been kept by the organization because it is the traditional and historical name of the organization.

    Most criticism of this letter is not for the use of the term “colored people,” but for Williams’ suggestions that blacks were better off under slavery, and that they are lazy and can’t think for themselves.

    So Miss Palin, how is that No Racyism in the Teay Partyy thing working out for ya?

  • Jimcracky
    July 17, 2010 - 1:44 pm | Permalink

    @Marshall – I wasn’t just born in the South, I grew up there. I watched the Dixiecrats leave the Democratic party because it wanted everyone treated equally. Those same racist Dixiecrats became Republicans and slowly took over the party and built a Republican majority in the south on the basis of a quietly racist agenda. It got quieter and more sophisticated until Barack Obama was elected. Now, it’s there for anyone to see. Since you look into things before voting, I suppose you’re going to vote to protect the rights of all Americans, not just the wealthy ones, vote to curb the systematic abuse and financial rape of the public done by big banks, big corporations, and big insurance. The role of government is to protect the public from systems too large for the individual to battle. Corporate money has corrupted the system and the Republican party sold their souls for that money. Teabaggers want to put them back in power to do it some more. How is that intelligent?

  • Dom
    July 17, 2010 - 2:46 pm | Permalink

    @jethrow Tulle

    Please don’t insult the asparagus.

    Thank you.

  • Tony
    July 19, 2010 - 12:44 am | Permalink

    Ha-ha….there are an awful lot of angry people put there.

    I only writing this for my own satisfaction, I really don’t care what anyone has to say about it.

    To begin with, Mr. Ponder missed the point that the “letter” was using sarcasm to point out Mr. Williams’s perspective of current events. In a sarcastic narrative, one has to strive to comprehend the author’s message, and in this case the author is using an absurd “negative portrayal” of African Americans to illustrate his belief that African Americans are in fact very capable of self determination and self support independent of government programs. The absurdity of the letter is meant to draw definition between the real-world independence and intelligence of African Americans and their perceived dependence on the government.

    The outcry over his article is fueled by the fact that the United States is a nation of over 300 million voting age citizens. There is no one single statement or concept that everyone will agree with. If someone says it is too cold, I guarantee that someone else will speak up to say it is too hot.

    I do not intend to judge the relevance of the NAACP; I am not a person of color, that is for its members to decide. I will offer an observation on the Tea Party, however, as I am a tax paying individual.

    The Tea Party is a conglomeration of smaller groups cooperating at times to advocate an idea that government should be limited, and that the government as it exists today in the United States is too large and intrusive. This message resonates with many people, but none so much as with an individual. This message is tailor made for the rugged individual who resents the over-regulation of our government. This message appeals to the lone maverick who detests the tone and arrogance of our elected politicians. It appeals to the single voter who feels like his or her vote, among millions, makes no difference. The problem with this message is that the people whom it will most strongly resonate with, are not the type of persons to join together in a long lasting political organization.

    I submit this concept to you; the animosity between the NAACP and the Tea Party is not a matter of racism. True racism is so very fluid and complex that many people have different definitions of it. Is it the belief of genetic inferiority? Is it the belief of a social inferiority? Is it simply the acknowledgement of differences between two races? Is it the lack of “love in your heart” for another race? Or is it the outright hatred of anyone different than you? As earlier stated, you won’t get 300+ million Americans to agree on a concrete definition.

    The chasm separating the NAACP and the Tea Party is not racism, it is a philosophical difference between two organizations…one that demands you walk it’s line…and the other full of individuals that, in their heart, don’t want to walk anyone’s line….

  • July 19, 2010 - 8:09 am | Permalink

    Nobody missed the sarcasm in Williams’ letter, Tony. What racists seem to miss are all the assumptions behind Williams’ attempt at humor/satire/parody/blah-blah-Ginger. And if you are so removed from the experience/idea/theory of black people, I suggest you go out and make an actual friend or two. Then get back with us.

  • bobby b
    July 19, 2010 - 3:02 pm | Permalink

    Nobody missed the sarcasm in Williams’ letter? Could’a fooled me.

    His letter tells me that he assumes that black people, just like white people, brown people, and all the other people, are intelligent enough and hardworking enough and honest enough to be full participants in society, and that, for the most part, they ARE full participants.

    His sarcasm presents to us how the NAACP has worked for years to undermine this belief in equality, simply in order to keep itself in power as a representative and protector of the black community.

    The NAACP has a vested interest in fostering all of those stereotypes that everyone here thinks are so vile, because without them, the NAACP is rather useless.

    I came here to read the so-called racist rant of Mr. Williams, but, like so many times in the past when the chanters and repeaters have developed a dishonest groupthink – a lie that they can repeat so many times loudly so that casual listeners will finally assume they’re hearing truth – just like those past lies, the mass stupid public belief no longer has any basis in fact.

    If you say that Williams’ letter was a racist rant, you’re either a liar, or you’re stupid.

    • Madison
      July 19, 2010 - 3:13 pm | Permalink

      Well, Bobby, if you read the letter and you don’t think it’s racist to say black people can’t think for themselves and want government hand-outs, you are both stupid and a racist.

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