Tea Party Leader Says NAACP Has Made More Money off Blacks Than ‘Any Slave Trader Ever’


Tea Party Express is the astroturf group operated by the Republican Party PR group, Russo Marsh & Rogers, that coordinated corporate-funded bus tour rallies around the country last year. Mark Williams, who resigned as the group’s chairman last month but is still deeply involved in the astroturfing activities, attacked the NAACP in an NPR interview yesterday, after the venerable civil rights group passed a resolution at its annual meeting condemning tea party leaders for coddling racists:

“You’re dealing with people who are professional race-baiters, who make a very good living off this kind of thing. They make more money off of race than any slave trader ever. It’s time groups like the NAACP went to the trash heap of history where they belong with all the other vile racist groups that emerged in our history,” Williams said.

Sarah Palin, the tea party’s de facto supreme leader, went on Fox and demanded that Pres. Obama, whom she described as “half-white” and “half black,” refudiate the NAACP resolution. She also issued a rebuke of the resolution on her Facebook page:

“The charge that Tea Party Americans judge people by the color of their skin is false, appalling and is a regressive and diversionary tactic to change the subject at hand,” Palin wrote Wednesday on her Facebook page.

Palin, a favorite of the Tea Party movement, said she was “saddened by the NAACP’s claim that patriotic Americans . . . are somehow racists.”

So who is this rabid racist group that is worse than slave traders, according to Republican Party apparatchiks like Mark Williams and Sarah Palin?

The NAACP was founded in 1909 to fight Jim Crow segregation in the South and elsewhere. The group’s first cause was a 30-year struggle to end the practice of lynching, an artifact of Reconstruction in the late 19th century that remained pervasive in the South into the 1930s. In the 1950s, the NAACP gave rise to the Civil Rights movement, successfully pushing to overturn Jim Crow laws, eventually including the Supreme Court’s outlawing school segregation in Brown V. Board of Education, in 1954. In the early 1960s, the NAACP’s struggle turned bloody as white conservatives, particularly in the South, became increasingly desperate to preserve the race-based advantages they enjoyed. The NAACP was a driving force behind the landmark Civil Rights and Voting Rights acts in the mid-1960s, which overturned the legal underpinnings of Jim Crow once and for all. Over the years, the NAACP’s leaders and their allies have included Thurgood Marshall, Martin Luther King, Medgar Evers and Eleanor Roosevelt.


  • Ben Dowd
    June 7, 2012 - 7:00 pm | Permalink

    It was actually white democrats that wanted to preserve the race based advantages. Mr. Ponder if you are going to misrepresent the truth or lie please try to use a bit more tact.

  • June 8, 2012 - 3:27 am | Permalink

    Let’s stick to the historical facts, Mr. Dowd. Those white supremacist Democrats were right-wing extremists, and now, 40 years later, their literal and ideological heirs have all migrated to the Republican Party, and it is the most racist of that cohort that comprises the base of the tea party.

    The Republican Party used to be the liberal party on race and civil rights. Now it has flipped on that issue, 180 degrees.

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