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Thursday, Dec. 18, 2014

Did Bart Gordon insult you?

Posted Thursday, September 24, 2009, at 10:58 AM

U.S. Rep. Bart Gordon, talking to Roll Call about last year's election, comments on the presidential results in Middle Tennessee.

"Obama 'seemed to be too urbane' for 6th district voters, Gordon said. 'If you're from some of those small counties, [Obama was] some guy from Chicago that speaks differently than you.'

"Gordon acknowledged that racism was also a factor in Obama's performance in the district.

"'Unfortunately, there was probably a little bit of that, but it was more just being urbane,"' Gordon said."

A potential Gordon challenger, Rutherford County GOP chair Lou Ann Zelenik, responds in a press release:

"I cannot imagine what would lead a Congressman to insult his constituents in this manner. The idea that Tennesseans vote based on race is a suggestion I reject entirely. He should immediately explain his remarks and apologize to the people of Tennessee."

Zelenik referred to his views as "elitist."

I didn't feel insulted. He was just expressing an opinion, one which I don't really agree with. But I'm not thin-skinned, either.

So...were you insulted? Do you want an apology from Gordon? Or do you agree with his assessment?


Comments
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[Show most recent comments first]

Nope, and I am thin-skinned. ;)

-- Posted by MotherMayhem on Thu, Sep 24, 2009, at 11:12 AM

Nah . . . but Gordon might be too urbane for me when he comes for reelection. LOL!

-- Posted by jaxspike on Thu, Sep 24, 2009, at 11:33 AM

Not insulted, but disappointed.

I would have understood more if he said that we might not identify with his urban lifestyle, but to add the "e" on the end of it would say that we can not appreciate a person who is refined or genteel.

That is indeed disappointing and maybe Mr. Gordon is not as urbane as he thinks.

-- Posted by stevemills on Thu, Sep 24, 2009, at 2:01 PM

Remember a higher percentage of voters in Tennessee voted for John Kerry, than Barack Obama. There were several counties in Tennessee that Kerry carried in 2004, that McCain carried in 2008. This was consistant in otherd Mid South states -from West Virgina, down through Kentucky, Tennessee and then into Arkansas.

Here is the link - it is of course in the NY Times.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/11/us/pol...

-- Posted by Grit on Thu, Sep 24, 2009, at 2:22 PM

Just in, a statement from Gordon's office:

"Congressman Gordon was asked by a reporter if racism was the reason Barack Obama did not do well in Tennessee. Gordon responded by stating no. He went on to say that Obama did poorly because he did not campaign in Tennessee and was a candidate from a large urban area with whom many Tennessee voters could not relate.

"This judgment was based on 30 years on voting history in Tennessee. Democrats like Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton who were from rural areas were able to do well, while urban Democrats like Michael Dukakis and John Kerry did poorly."

-- Posted by David Melson on Thu, Sep 24, 2009, at 2:39 PM

I think a lot of Congressmen (and women) are going to get a wakeup call FROM AMERICANS that they are "out of touch with" in the next election! Rural or urban, I AM TIRED of people talking down to me, thinking they are "better" than the average American and "what's best" for everyone! My vote counts...at least for now anyway. :p

-- Posted by neighborhood mom on Thu, Sep 24, 2009, at 3:25 PM

Could it simply be that the Obama and the Democratic part in general do not represent the values of Tennesseans?

The Democratic platform is pro-gay, pro-abortion, pro-gun control, more government (socialist) control. After all, Al Gore one of Tennessee's own was also defeated in his home state.

Perhaps Tennesse voters are wise enough to see through the rhetoric, and it has nothing to do with race or geographical location and more to do with good common sense.

-- Posted by Liveforlight on Thu, Sep 24, 2009, at 3:47 PM

I agree with neighborhoodmom one hundred percent.

Ya all keep your eyes open out there and maybe you'll see the ad on my truck....

BIG DADDY RABBIT 4 BENEVOLENT DICTATOR!!!!!!

or we can vote out anyone with incumbant next to their name.

-- Posted by big daddy rabbit on Thu, Sep 24, 2009, at 8:59 PM

I don't know if it was racist or not but I would love to have a dollar for every ole boy I heard around town that stated no way would they ever vote for a "N------" Made my skin crawl that they were so open and blunt about it.

I know very intelligent, educated, career people who did not mix words when they voiced their opinion on Obama and why they would not vote for him, and still now why they won't back him. They have no problem admitting to their objection to his color. It's sad that they have that hate so ingrained in them.

True many did not vote for him because he was black, many because he was a democrat and some because of policy, and to say there is no cause to think racism was a factor if just not realistic. There is a reason this area of the country has the reputation of befriending the KKK.

As long as there are different colored people we will have this problem, and just saying it's not there will not make it go away.

-- Posted by LetsGetRealFolks on Thu, Sep 24, 2009, at 9:29 PM

http://www.examiner.com/x-20988-Tennesse...

MY MY "TY WAS LOST BUT NOW HE'S FOUND "

This is worth a lot of VOTES ,,are my eyes seeing this .No its a LOOK A LIKE ...LOOK LIKE YOU GOT BUSTED

looks like TY TY IS OUR MAN IF HE CANT DODGE US NO ONE CAN

-- Posted by backat ya on Thu, Sep 24, 2009, at 9:31 PM

I thought the "majority" wanted Obama and the Democrats to run (or ruin) the country. What happened to all those voters?

I think they are the ones getting the wake-up call.

I object to some of his policies--not his race and what part of his race is it that everyone says people object to?

-- Posted by stardust on Thu, Sep 24, 2009, at 9:44 PM

I don't know if it was racist or not but I would love to have a dollar for every ole boy I heard around town that stated no way would they ever vote for a "N------" Made my skin crawl that they were so open and blunt about it.

I know very intelligent, educated, career people who did not mix words when they voiced their opinion on Obama and why they would not vote for him, and still now why they won't back him.

-- Posted by LetsGetRealFolks

Why not name names, so we can vote with our feet and wallets to not support these people?

-- Posted by quietmike on Thu, Sep 24, 2009, at 10:52 PM

LetsGetRealFolks . . . I loved how you basically stated in so many words that most Tennesseans are racist. I really resent your remark and I can honestly say that ignorance does exist in Tennessee because you definitely display it on a daily basis on here. Sure, racism exists but it exists everywhere. Why do you think race riots occur in places like California or Michigan . . . the south does not have a monopoly on such things? So to paint Tennessee with such a broad stroke and associate all Tennesseans with groups like the KKK just goes to show how greatly naive and ignorant you really are and your comments do nothing for civil discourse or debate on this forum.

-- Posted by jaxspike on Fri, Sep 25, 2009, at 7:37 AM

I do believe race played a roll in the election. I also believed it worked in favor of Mr. Obama. Reports say that as high as 97% of blacks voted for Obama. Why? How was he different from Al Gore?

Somehow racism only seems to apply to whites.

However, the question asked on this blog was, did Bart Gordon offend me with his statements? His comments are offensive in that he seems to think that we, in general, are so narrow minded and biggoted that we cannot make decisions based solely on a parties platform, the issues, and the reputation of the candidate, aside from race and geography.

Again, Al Gore, a white Tennessean lost the state in 2000. If he had carried his home state the Florida election would have been irrelevant. He didn't! Was that also because of racism and geography?

Racism is steeped in the slavery of the 1800's and the oppression of the blacks in the early 20th century. All of those issues were wrong and the generations afterwards are paying for those injustices.

Slavery is the absence of freedom and choice. Now we are headed back in the same direction. We are moving towards surrendering our rights to choose to an overpowering central government that wants to mandate health insurance to everyone and penalize those who do not wish to purchase such insurance.

If we continously surrender our freedoms we ALL become as slaves, no longer having the freedom to choose our own destiny, in that we will at least be equal I suppose.

Incrementally surrendering our freedom will have a big affect on the future generations just as past slavery issues are affecting the current generation.

Did Bart Gordon offend me? Yes. I have enough sense to look past the man's race and geography to realize his values and agenda do not represent mine.

-- Posted by Liveforlight on Fri, Sep 25, 2009, at 8:36 AM

A large percentage of people that I have talked to over the last year have also been very racist towards Obama, using derogatory terms such as the "n" word. I don't know what people in California or Michigan are saying about Obama, but I am certain that racism is alive and well there and it is being spread by people of all colors.

-- Posted by nathan.evans on Fri, Sep 25, 2009, at 8:42 AM

I think this blog was about Bart Gordon and his disconnect with the voters.

Unfortunately, Bart Gordon and so many of our elected officials in Washington, Nashville, etc. have been in office so long that they have forgotten where they came from. I went to school with Bart Gordon at MTSU and have voted for Bart every time I have had the chance. I won't be voting for him again. He has forgotten who he represents and who he is suppose to be working for. He may be making Nancy Pelosi happy but Tennesseans have a habit on sending reminders to politicians that forget who they represent... just ask Albert Gore Sr. and his son Al. They both got the message from Tennessee voters and Bart's message is coming up next year.

-- Posted by Farmer Bill on Fri, Sep 25, 2009, at 8:47 AM

Maybe I keep better company than you Nathan because I haven't heard of such racists comment except maybe on here. Racism does exist though on many levels on both sides . . . how many people voted for him just because he was black? The point is too many people want to label someone a racist if they disagree with Obama's policies and I take great offense to that because I am definitely not racist.

-- Posted by jaxspike on Fri, Sep 25, 2009, at 9:28 AM

Maybe you don't have any friends Jax.

-- Posted by nathan.evans on Fri, Sep 25, 2009, at 11:20 AM

The strange thing about the Republican Party, is that it is a coalition between the wealthy elites (think Steve Forbes) and the rural non-wealthy Southern voter. Abortion is still legal, you cant say a prayer at the Friday night football game, and you cannot buy a gun anytime or anyplace. However, wealth is being concentrated into fewer people. I wonder which part of this coalition is playing the other like a banjo.

-- Posted by Grit on Fri, Sep 25, 2009, at 12:58 PM

LOL . . . I have many good friends of great character.

Sorry to disappoint!

-- Posted by jaxspike on Fri, Sep 25, 2009, at 1:02 PM

Nathan - If I remember correctly you stated that you don't care what happens in Bedford County, or in TN because you don't live here. If that is the case, why would Bart Gordon's comments affect you in any way? Why are you constantly on here stirring the pot in a community in which you don't live? Is there nothing to do, wherever it is that you live?

Maybe the YOU have the problem since the people that you surround yourself with are racists. This being evident from the "large percentage" of people that you've talked to that are racist.

-- Posted by Thom on Fri, Sep 25, 2009, at 4:49 PM

So...were you insulted?

Nope, Not at all!

-- Posted by Momof3&3step&1gran on Fri, Sep 25, 2009, at 10:55 PM

Oh yeah...I forgot to answer that question.

No, I'm not offended. I AM disappointed that the Congressman from this district thinks that lowly of his constituents. HE's the one "representing" us.

-- Posted by Thom on Fri, Sep 25, 2009, at 11:04 PM

NO>

-- Posted by backat ya on Fri, Sep 25, 2009, at 11:20 PM

Nathan - If I remember correctly you stated that you don't care what happens in Bedford County, or in TN because you don't live here. If that is the case, why would Bart Gordon's comments affect you in any way? Why are you constantly on here stirring the pot in a community in which you don't live? Is there nothing to do, wherever it is that you live?

Maybe the YOU have the problem since the people that you surround yourself with are racists. This being evident from the "large percentage" of people that you've talked to that are racist.

-- Posted by Thom on Fri, Sep 25, 2009, at 4:49 PM

These aren't even people that I hang out with smartmouth. I talk to lots of people during my day. Get that through your tiny little brain. Also I have a right to say anything I want to say about what occurs in Bedford County, because number one, I have lived there for 31 years and number two, I am a land owner there, so you can keep your mouth shut. What business is it of yours anyways? Don't answer that because I really could care less.

-- Posted by nathan.evans on Sun, Sep 27, 2009, at 11:44 PM

Thom and Nathan . . . it is this hostility from the extreme left and right that alienates so many people from politics and causes much of the discord we face today. I have to admit though that Nathan does seem so bitter and full of angst and so quick to degrade and belittle people who do not agree with him but that does not mean he has no right to voice his opinion in these forums no matter where he may live.

Thom . . . sometimes it's better to battle irrationality and hostility with positive reinforcement and civil discourse.

Nathan . . . sometimes you need to step back and not take things so personal and expand your personal view from outside your own personal context.

Now, if I could only practice what I preach. LOL!

-- Posted by jaxspike on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 7:57 AM

Well if you would go back and read my original statement I in no way said anything that would indicate that my friends or even people that I surround myself with are the people I am speaking of. An example of people I have talked to would be people that are sitting next to me on a plane or in a checkout line at Kroger. When someone calls my friends racists or implies that I surround myself with racists, I am going to take that as a personal attack. Why? Because it is!

What I said about people being racist towards Obama is the truth. A good portion of those that don't like Obama, do so because he is a black man. Do they disagree with him for other reasons? Absolutely. I disagree with him on many things and that doesn't make me a racist. However I do not immediately dismiss what he has to say before he has even said it. That is what the racists do. It is just my opinion, but I do base it on something real and tangible and obviously Thom doesn't agree with me.

-- Posted by nathan.evans on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 8:21 AM

A good portion of those that don't like Obama, do so because he is a black man.

Posted by nathan.evans on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 8:21 AM

I thought he was and still is just as much a white man as he is a black man as he is a white man as he is a black man as he is a white man etc., etc?

I guess when we are bored we play cards.

-- Posted by Blessed Assurance on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 8:38 AM

You have just mentioned the most twisted part of the entire situation BA. For some, the idea of a white woman from Kansas producing a child with a black man from Kenya is worse than if Obama had been 100% black.

-- Posted by nathan.evans on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 8:48 AM

Well if you would go back and read my original statement I in no way said anything that would indicate that my friends or even people that I surround myself with are the people I am speaking of. An example of people I have talked to would be people that are sitting next to me on a plane or in a checkout line at Kroger. When someone calls my friends racists or implies that I surround myself with racists, I am going to take that as a personal attack. Why? Because it is!

-- Posted by nathan.evans on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 8:21 AM

I take it as a personal attack when someone says that the reason I disagree with Obama's policy is because I am "racist" just because of their limited personal experience. Sure, some may disagree with Obama because of his race but they are a minority. Using such stereotypes only shows your own prejudices.

-- Posted by jaxspike on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 9:26 AM

Was I talking about you Jax? Have I ever spoken with you in real life? Have I ever called you a racist?

-- Posted by nathan.evans on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 9:49 AM

A good portion of those that don't like Obama, do so because he is a black man.

Posted by nathan.evans on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 8:21 AM

It came out of your own mouth . . . maybe you clarify your statements better in the future instead of making vague generic assumptions.

-- Posted by jaxspike on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 10:35 AM

I meant to say maybe you "should" clarify your . . .

-- Posted by jaxspike on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 10:37 AM

A good portion of those that don't like Obama, do so because he is a black man.

Posted by nathan.evans on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 8:21 AM

It came out of your own mouth . . . maybe you clarify your statements better in the future instead of making vague generic assumptions.

-- Posted by jaxspike on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 10:35 AM

It is hardly a vague, generic assumption if I base it on my own personal experiences. All I am saying is that for me, what Bart Gordon said about race being a factor is true because I have heard it with my own ears from a solid majority of individuals that I have had the opportunity to speak with that are interested in politics. I am certain that Mr. Gordon has also had a similar experience and that is why he said what he did. If you resent that opinion then maybe deep down you have feelings of prejudice that you are trying to come to terms with. If not then it should not be an issue for you because you would not be in that category and you do not share their views. Either way, there most certainly is a group of individuals that do not like President Obama for racist reasons and if you attend a protest against Obama policies, they will most certainly be beside you. If it makes you feel better there is also a lunatic fringe that makes up a portion of the other side of the argument and unfortunately they are beside me if I protest certain causes that I could get behind. For people like Bill O'Reilly or Laura Ingram to paint us all with such a broad brush is also unfair, so I understand where you are coming from. However I am not going to stand up and defend them because we both share a couple of like views, not that that is what you are doing by any stretch of the imagination.

-- Posted by nathan.evans on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 10:53 AM

While I have voted for Bart Gordon at each election, I still feel what he said was inappropriate and not something that needed to be said.

In regards to what you said Nathan . . . I know I am not racist because I grew up in a family with two adopted black children who were like sisters to me. I just get tired of this broad statement that seems to be made every time that if you disagree with Obama then you must be racist or any of the other names that have been hurled. This no different than when Bush was president and when people who disagreed with the war were labeled as unpatriotic. Also, I am not a republican so please don't compare me to one . . . I have never voted for a Republican for president even though the next election may tempt me to do so.

Anyway, I have legitimate reason for disagreeing with Obama's policies and so do many other people. Whether you realize it or not, your statements did compare people like us to those with racist intent and I find offense because I definitely do not stand for that. I am over it now though because I realize the context of this forum and people involved and realize it is not worry with.

-- Posted by jaxspike on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 12:02 PM

Well obviously you do not belong to that subset Jax, so it doesn't apply to you. It does not change the fact that those people do exist and that no other president has had to deal with prejudice because of race or religion on this scale before.

-- Posted by nathan.evans on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 12:13 PM

According to the polls at least 43% of whites voted for Obama which includes some of my friends and family. The same polls say 95% of blacks voted for Obama.

Racism does exist but only seems to be the issue when it works AGAINST not when it is in FAVOR.

Racism worked in favor of Obama during the election which he won and that was OK. Now that his socialist angenda is being pushed it is being opposed because of racism. Is it possible that people just don't like his policies once the truth comes out about him?

If race is not supposed to be an issue in the job market, why does the question exist on all employment applications? Race (or gender) is an issue that should not be considered when screening applicants but, since it works in favor of the minorities, it is.

Have you ever been told to your face you can't have a job because of your race and gender? I personally know those that have. Is that justice or racism?

-- Posted by Liveforlight on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 2:00 PM

"no other president has had to deal with prejudice because of race or religion on this scale before."

That's where your "tiny little brain" is wrong, Nathan. John F. Kennedy had TONS of people that were against him simply because he was Catholic. Additionally, there was a MUCH higher percentage of black voters that voted for Obama than because he is black than white voters that voted for McCain because he's white, does this mean that those blacks are racist as well?

As for your snide little comments, I am only going to say that you seem like a very bitter person that may need some anger management counseling. Seriously, you should look into that. Have a nice day.

-- Posted by Thom on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 2:12 PM

I knew you were going to mention JFK. JFK won the south and the northeast electorate so he must have been doing something right. And yes I do feel that black people that voted for Barrack Obama based not on principles but simply because he is black did so for racist reasons. I need anger management?? You started it, not me... remember?

-- Posted by nathan.evans on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 4:03 PM

"'Unfortunately, there was probably a little bit of that, but it was more just being urbane,"' Gordon said."

i am confused. why are we having a fierce debate over something gordon didnt say? he was asked if obama didnt carry tennessee because of race, and said that was not the case. conceding that some people voted that way? well, how could he be honest & not admit it affected some votes? do any of us think that didnt influence *any* voters? i might think zelenik some sort of an idiot if i believed that she didnt think *any* voters were influenced by race, but of course she isnt that stupid. gordon said something, so she had to be offended by it, the specific content was of little consequence, she had to be offended.

not that i agree with his assessment of why obama didnt do well here. but i am not offended by it. i was not shocked to find out that gordon thinks i live in the country.

-- Posted by lazarus on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 10:43 PM

I don't think the key to this whole "conversation" (sic) is whether Bart Gordon's comments were or weren't offensive. I think the key is, how do you explain the electoral change map that "Grit" linked above. Here's the link again:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/11/us/pol...

Grit's link doesn't give anecdotes, it gives hard data. The map is really striking. Somebody please tell me why the strip of the US from the mountains of WV and KY, through all of TN, AR, and OK, was the only part of the US (except for far south LA and MS) that systematically voted more Republican in 2008 than in 2004. I would be shocked! SHOCKED!! if racism were a factor.

Please, be sure to look at the map before you answer - even if it is thu NooYawk TIMES.

-- Posted by w00dy on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 10:45 PM

And, good post, lazarus.

-- Posted by w00dy on Mon, Sep 28, 2009, at 10:53 PM

So, if racism was a factor in the Southern States voting more Republican, then in it could also be said(and I looked at the map) that racism was a factor in the other states voting more Democratic!

The argument could go both ways.

-- Posted by stardust on Tue, Sep 29, 2009, at 6:07 AM

Not racism, just good common sense.

-- Posted by nathan.evans on Tue, Sep 29, 2009, at 8:07 AM

Nathan, I finally agree with you. The South just showed good common sense. A rare commodity these days.:)

-- Posted by Liveforlight on Tue, Sep 29, 2009, at 10:06 AM

Stardust,

Given that the largest geographical area in which blacks live is the Southeastern United States your argument is unfounded skepticism...

Liveforlight,

The South has a history of being wrong... slavery, the Civil War, Women's rights, civil rights, voting rights... and the list goes on. Add this one to the list.

-- Posted by darrick_04 on Tue, Sep 29, 2009, at 8:15 PM

darrick04,

I will conceded that the south has been wrong on some things. Slavery was, and is, wrong no doubt.

The Civil War was more about states rights than slavery. That issue was never resolved.

The Confederate government was the first to conscript it's citizens into military service thereby forcing the citizens into the very thing they were fighting against, another wrong? Obviously!

The last time I checked the south and mid-west were still part of the union which all voted against Obama. Were they all wrong? Time will tell.

One Southerner once said it is wrong for the governemnt to take money from a man who works and give it to a man who does not. That man was a senator from Tennessee. His name was Davy Crockett. So far the entitlement programs he opposed has lead us to trillion dollar deficits.

Those deficts in my opion are very wrong. Obama is making that deficit much much bigger. Another wrong?

I am sure that there are plenty of "wrongs" in the rest of the country. I suppose you think the left is right?

I think you will find that in all the areas north, south, east, and west that have a high concentration of blacks voted for Obama. That is indicative of racism, not geographic location.

Post civil war south was Democratic. After all, it was the republicans under Lincoln that wrote the emancipation proclamation. Since then, the southern and midwestern state have changed to repulican. Why? Maybe you think we are all just stupid or could it be common sense?

Common sense is not confined or omitted in any one geographical area.

Two wrongs do not make a right, but three lefts will, assuming all three lefts are right angles.

How is creating an all powerful central government that forces it's will on it's people right?

Tennessee is called the volunteer state because we have traditionally stood up for what we believe. Is that wrong also? Or is it only wrong when it is against the liberal socialist agenda that is attempting to re-enslave the people through legislation?

Perhaps you can enlighten us on our "wrongness" in regards to Mr. Obama. What has he done that is so right?

-- Posted by Liveforlight on Tue, Sep 29, 2009, at 9:18 PM

darrick_04 . . . why bother living in the South if it repels you so much? I mean really . . . do you see the good in anything around here? Is your life that sad and pathetic? Maybe one day you will experience places outside of the South and realize no place is perfect and that every place has both good and bad qualities.

BTW . . Racism exists everywhere. I mean wasn't race the issue in the arrest of Professor Gates in Massachusetts like Obama and others claimed? I think Rodney King was not beaten in the South . . . am I wrong? Do I need to list some other examples of racism in other regions of the USA? Also before the Civil War, slavery was also practiced in the North. The Civil War actually wasn't about slavery . . . it was about government representation and taxation. Come on darrick_04 . . . aren't you supposedly smarter than this? LOL!

-- Posted by jaxspike on Thu, Oct 1, 2009, at 8:08 AM

Here's a little something for those who don't think the Civil War was mainly about slavery. I think it's important in getting to the bottom of things like this to look at what people said, wrote, or did at the time rather than years or decades later, when they might tend to be self-serving after the fact

So here's an at-the-time glimpse into what was going on in TN. Governor Isham Harris called an extraordinary session of the Tennessee General Assembly in early January 1861 in response to the secession crisis elsewhere in the South. On January 7th he addressed the General Assembly and requested, among other things, a referendum to determine whether a statewide Convention would be held to address whether Tennessee should secede. There is no doubt from the content of his speech that, at least in his mind, the central issue in deciding about secession was slavery.

But don't take my word for it. Hehe's the link to the speech, check it out for yourselves:

http://americancivilwar.com/documents/is...

BTW the referendum failed statewide by about 2-to-1. It wasn't until after Fort Sumter that the General Assembly passed an ordinance of secession, and Tennessee didn't officially secede until the ordinance was approved by the voters in June 1861.

-- Posted by w00dy on Thu, Oct 1, 2009, at 6:26 PM

I didn't say that the people who voted for Obama were black(and don't forget he is both black and white). If one argues that the South didn't vote Republican because of his race, then one could also argue that the other regions voted Democrat for the same reason. I didn't start the race argument.

-- Posted by stardust on Thu, Oct 1, 2009, at 7:15 PM

Thanks Woody, that is a good article to read.

Obviously slavery was very much on the mind of Governor Harris and probably a lot of the state politicians of that time. After all, they were the rich slave holders. They didn't represent the ones of my family that I can trace (not slave owners) and probably most of the citizens, but were ready to fight to defend the constitution of the state and the rights of their neighbors.

The right to own a slave would not seem to me to be parallel with, say,.. the right to own a gun.

But under the right political spin, I can see where the same scenario could play it's self out again.

I don't think the average citizen, that had no slaves, fought and died just to protect slavery.

The civil war, like most all wars, I believe was the rich mans war and the poor mans fight.The craftiness with which words are spun in order to muster support for (place cause here) by politicians has caused millions of deaths in countless wars.

Our politicians now, are disconnected from the common people, the same as they were then. I think Bart Gordon has indicated that with his comments.

-- Posted by Liveforlight on Fri, Oct 2, 2009, at 10:47 PM

Washington has a tendency to ignore what the individual states have to say. Just like they did with the TN Firearms Freedom Act when the ATF sent a letter to all federal firearms license holders that they were to basically ignore the State Law that was just passed.

One of the biggest problems with Washington is that they don't realize that they're only really responsible for anything that moves between states, not anything that goes in within the confines of our state. If they would just take an hour each day in their rooms and read the Constitution. Maybe then they would understand this document to which they've taken an oath to DEFEND. Most of our state reps would be more than happy to head on up to Washington to point out and highlight the parts that the folks in Washington don't get. I read it before I joined the Navy. Before we went through the enlistment oath, the officer asked if there was anyone who has not read the United States Constitution in it's entirety. Two guys raised their hands and were asked to leave. The rest of us went through the Oath and then were asked the following question: Which Amendment guarantees a citizen's right to keep and bear arms? Three more guys raised their hands and were ushered out in the hallway to be asked questions. The other five that were in there were NOT in there when we three that went into the hallway and asked which Amendment and what that Amendment means. The two other guys and I went back into the oath of enlistment room and were then welcomed to the United States Navy as sailors. When I asked the enlisting officer what happened? He said that the first two guys that had never read the Constitution, were sent to a training room that not only showed them the text of the Constitution to read. Once they had read the Constitution, they were again asked if they still wanted to take the oath of enlisting. They both said yes.

I asked what happened to the three that couldn't answer the second amendment question. The enlisting officer informed me that, after additional questioning, it became obvious that these guys hadn't read any of the Constitution but lied about it so that they could join the Navy. The first two will be allowed to join in a week. The other three will not be allowed to resubmit for enlistment for one year. "I can't stand liars" the enlisting officer told me.

-- Posted by Thom on Mon, Oct 5, 2009, at 12:55 AM

"" the rich mans war and the poor mans fight ""

( posted by liveforlight )

This is a very interesting comment. It made me stop and shake my head for a moment. This seems to be what our country is. It seems to have almost always been the way, not just in American of course, but it just rings louder here. I wonder if we will ever get past this mentality that it is OK, that the poor man must be the ones to fight and suffer at the gains of the rich man? That a loss at their expense is OK. Not just in wars but in most every aspect of life. You will rarely see a rich man sacrifice anything he finds of value,he may throw some money he'll never miss at a impressive cause, but he will not go without his goodies to do so, he won't for go a vacation or his new fancy yacht, yet a poor man will be more likely to offer his last dollar to help his neighbor in need, doing without a necessity to do so. And then be considered unworthy because he has not enough to feed his family,or pay for the health care a rich man employer gives him for free. Without the poor the rich would have nothing to hold them up there, to keep it all together for their enjoyment,

"" the rich mans war and the poor mans fight ""

Who is the most valuable? Could the rich exist without the poor to keep them their?

-- Posted by wonderwhy on Wed, Oct 7, 2009, at 4:13 AM

Jesus said we would always have the poor. He did not say we would always have the rich.

The American dream involves the ability of the poor to become rich. I have no problem with rich people or the idea that a hard working poor man may become rich.

The problem is that our government, as well as most other governments, is controlled by rich people who have become disconnected from the poor people that they govern. As a result they tend to pass laws in ways that support their own theology and use carefully crafted words to obtain the support of the poor.

Government by the rich tends to serve the rich although they may tell us poor that it is actually serving us.

Raised as a democrat, I was told that the Democrats were for the poor man and the Republicans were for the rich.

I have come to realize that the government's actions seem more inclined to keep the poor poor by heavy taxation, insurance costs, and licensing on those of us that try to start our own business.

My father, mother, and the most our family now find ourselves being against the democrats due to their disconnect with our values such as abortion, homosexuality, gun control, deficit spending, increased taxation and the fact that their programs have not helped the poor but instead have worked to keep us poor.

The common man, with his common sense, needs to be in control of the government not the rich. If they were, the socialist politics we see today would not have a chance.

-- Posted by Liveforlight on Fri, Oct 9, 2009, at 4:00 PM


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David Melson is a copy editor and staff writer for the Times-Gazette.