The Republican Minority Outreach Campaign continues its regress into the 1890s, as a Georgia Republican nominee for the state schools’ superintendent referenced The Color Purple while on the campaign trail to attack his black opponent and score cheap political points.
Richard Woods blasted the United States Department of Education at the monthly breakfast meeting of the Cobb Republican Party. For some reason, decided to reference the 1985 movie about a 14-year-old black girl growing up in Georgia in the 1900s:
They may dust off their copies of their VHS copies of ‘The Color Purple,’ but it isn’t going to happen, all right? We are going to remain Republican red in our state, and we’re going to move this state forward so that we can do the very best, and again, I look forward to being your next state school superintendent of schools.
VHS tapes? That brings bad memories. Do DVDs, BluRays, and computers capable of playing video files not exist in “Red Georgia” (Woods is probably so clueless about world history and geography he wouldn’t understand the joke there)?
“Remain Republican red” and “move the state forward” are two mutually contradictory positions. One is “A” and the other is “Not A”. “A” cannot be “Not A.”
We have to make sure that our kids know our history. They are going to know the true American history. It will not be liberalism, it will not be progressivism, but it will be something that is based on our Founding Fathers. It will be the Constitution, it will be the Declaration of Independence, it will be the Federalist Papers. We will teach the truth, because last time I heard, the truth will set you free, OK?
“Our history.” Sounds like the kind of guy you want running the school board, right?
Woods is campaigning against Valarie Wilson, a former chairwoman of the Decatur school board.
His remarks haven’t gone unnoticed. The Marietta Daily Journal reports that Attorney Kenya Pierree of Smyrna, a Democrat who is running for the Post 2 seat on the same Board of Ed that Woods is, wasn’t pleased by the remarks:
I have no idea what VHS tapes or ‘The Color Purple’ or anything has to do with bettering education for our children. To bring ‘The Color Purple’ in, it makes me wonder: ‘What are you alluding to?’ Are you alluding to you want things to be back the way they were where slavery was dominant? Are you alluding to the fact that you don’t want diversity within your state where there was a separation of what African- Americans could do and could not do? I don’t know. I mean, I don’t know what that has to do with anything, and I think if we’re talking about education, then maybe we need him to be a little bit more educated in the history of this nation and how horrific a time that was.
Do you honestly think that Woods has the intestinal fortitude to admit that’s what he was talking about? Nothing makes White people more defensive than bringing up slavery. Confederacy got it’s butt kicked? Never forget the sacrifices our grandfathers made; that evil man Sherman burned down my great grandpappy’s farm (never mind your great grandpappy lived in Mississippi). Slavery? Good lord people, get over it already; stop living in the past — besides, my family didn’t own slaves at all.
There’s a shelf life for large scale events like slavery and the Civil War; the length of that shelf life inversely proportional of the number of minority individuals involved, but directly proportional to the number of White people involved.
While Woods hasn’t responded, his fellow Republican, Susan Thayer, did, saying that:
Because you know red and blue combined makes purple, so that’s what I thought, but that was the way I took it that we don’t need to become purple. We need to maintain our red Republican influence.
The Color Purple is not about “maintaining Republican influence.” If that’s what Thayer and Woods think it means, then they should probably sit down and actually read the book or watch the film. In fact, I think I can still find a VHS of the movie around here at a garage sale or a thrift store, if that’s their preferred method.
They have to bring the VCS though. I hate those things.