We're still trying to figure out what Ellis Washington's Oct. 2 WorldNetDaily column means. It seems to be about civil rights vs. constitutional rights and alleged confusion between the two. But Washington writes stuff like this:
Have civil rights devolved into pseudo constitutional rights? Are the civil-rights black people marched in the streets, fought, bled and died for during the 1950s-1980s equal to the civil rights that illegal aliens, radical feminists, pedophiles, same-sex marriages, homosexuals, Marxists unionists and animals now claim? Only if government separates legality from morality.
These and other thought provoking questions were raised by Mr. Milt Harris one of my colleagues on "Joshua's Trail," America's premiere radio show of black conservative thought.
Historically the concept of "civil rights" date to the ancient Roman Edit of Milan in 313 A.D. and greatly extended in the English Bill of Rights (1689). In the 1860s, Americans adapted this usage to newly freed blacks after slavery was outlawed. Congress enacted civil-rights acts in 1866, 1871, 1875, 1957, 1960, 1964, 1968 and 1991. However, for well over a century now, since the advent of the progressive movement in the early 1880s, radicals, progressives, socialists and liberal Democrats with their willing accomplices – socialist activist groups, legislator judges, the state-controlled media, trial lawyers, teachers unions and the academy – have so perverted the original intent of the Constitution framers as to make civil rights a potent form of pseudo-rights (for Democrat allies) that our original civil rights founded under natural law and natural rights are now essentially a dead letter.
For example, who can forget that iconic picture of the 1964 Civil Rights Bill signing ceremony with LBJ and MLK shaking hands? To most Americans that was one of our proudest moments in history, but few people were aware of Lyndon B. Johnson's Machiavellian motives behind pushing civil rights after spending more than 35 years of his career actively opposing black American's fight for equality.
Based on Milt's prescient critique of contemporary civil rights pushed by the Democrats to replace legitimate constitutional rights, I ask this question: Why did Dr. King and the civil-rights movement have to go begging to the federal government for civil rights when Jefferson said in the Declaration of Independence, All men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness?
Our state-sponsored schools no longer teach our children that civil and political rights need not be codified to be protected, and democracies worldwide have written constitutions which guarantees natural, civil and political rights.
Washington seems not to understand that the civil rights laws of the 1960s did not explicitly grant rights -- they could not, since they are statutory and not constitutional. Rather, they codified a federal mechanism to protect and enforce those already-existing rights against decades of state and local laws and customs.
From there, Washington descends into an attack on Lyndon Johnson:
Therefore, it is with sadness and bitter irony that I must expose that iconic scene of LBJ and MLK signing the 1964 Civil Rights Act, constitutionally speaking, as colossal and enduring sham liberal Democrats have perpetrated against MLK, the civil-rights movement and black America. Why? Because every black American already had these unalienable natural rights that were secured not by LBJ, MLK or the Constitution, but by God under natural law for eternity the moment they drew their first breath from their mother's womb!
On July 2, 1964, when LBJ, one of the most rabid foes of civil rights, arrogantly took all the credit as a civil-rights champion, exploited the JFK assassination, co-opted MLK and the civil-rights movement and duped most black Americans to foolishly believe that a little piece of paper LBJ had just signed granted them rights. It is tantamount to a politician stealing the keys to your house, letting others live in it for years, then calling a press conference to present the keys to your house back to you as the useful idiots in the audience give thunderous applause to the politician who stole and then returned the property of another.
Washington goes on to bizarrely suggest that the "Democrats" who allegedly "insisted that 'property' not be included as an unalienable right in the final draft of the Declaration of Independence as Jefferson originally intended" in order to "preserve slavery" are the direct ancestors of today's Democrats. In fact, the modern Democratic Party dates only to the 1830s; there were no political parties in America at the time of the drafting of the Declaration of Independence. Further, according to Wikipedia, replacing "property" with "the pursuit of happiness" was apparently Jefferson's idea.
Of course, Washington has gotten things flamboyantly wrong before. No wonder he can't seem to hold a full-time job.