My folks were Southern Democrats…Conservative Southern Democrats. They passed away in ’95 and ’97, respectively.
Back in the day, the Democrat Party was a far different political party than they are today.
On July 11, 1960, the Democratic Party Platform began with the following:
In 1796, in America’s first contested national election, our Party, under the leadership of Thomas Jefferson, campaigned on the principles of “The Rights of Man.”
Ever since, these four words have underscored our identity with the plain people of America and the world.
In periods of national crisis, we Democrats have returned to these words for renewed strength. We return to them today.
In 1960, “The Rights of Man” are still the issue. It is our continuing responsibility to provide an effective instrument of political action for every American who seeks to strengthen these rights-everywhere here in America, and everywhere in our 20th Century world.
The common danger of mankind is war and the threat of war. Today, three billion human beings live in fear that some rash act or blunder may plunge us all into a nuclear holocaust which will leave only ruined cities, blasted homes, and a poisoned earth and sky.
Our objective, however, is not the right to coexist in armed camps on the same planet with totalitarian ideologies; it is the creation of an enduring peace in which the universal values of human dignity, truth, and justice under law are finally secured for all men everywhere on earth.
If America is to work effectively for such a peace, we must first restore our national strength-military, political, economic, and moral.
That’s a far cry from “You didn’t build that”, huh?
In fact, it sounds like the Modern Republican Party.
Well, hold on to something. You ain’t seen nothin’, yet…as The New York Times reports:
Democrats appear ready to embrace same-sex marriage as part of their party platform, a policy shift that reflects an expanded acceptance of gay rights in mainstream politics.
The move would place the party in line with the beliefs of President Obama, who in May became the first sitting president to declare that gay men and lesbians should be able to marry.
Democratic Party officials had squabbled over the issue in the past. But at a platform-drafting meeting over the weekend in Minneapolis, they approved the first step to amend their platform, placing the amendment on track for adoption. In two weeks, the entire platform committee will vote at a meeting scheduled in Detroit. Then, if approved as expected, it would go before convention delegates in Charlotte, N.C., for final passage in early September.
According to Democrats who were briefed on the vote in Minneapolis, there was no objection when the issue came up. Though the language that was voted on could still be revised, party officials do not anticipate any major obstacles going forward.
The platform language approved over the weekend also reiterated the party’s disapproval of the Defense of Marriage Act, which prohibits the federal government from recognizing legal same-sex marriages. The 2008 platform had a similar section.
The Democratic Party’s move comes more than two months after President Obama personally backed the rights of same-sex couples to wed. The president’s reversal — he had said previously that while he could not support same-sex marriage, his views on the issue were “evolving” — was a significant move, though it carried no legal weight.
The Democrats would become the first major party to embrace same-sex marriage. But as historic as the platform would be, the president’s position makes it decidedly less controversial.
News of the platform amendment was first reported by The Washington Blade.
Gay rights supporters praised the Democratic Party’s vote. “Like Americans from all walks of life, the Democratic Party has recognized that committed and loving gay and lesbian couples deserve the right to have their relationships respected as equal under the law,” said Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign. “I believe that one day very soon the platforms of both major parties will include similar language on this issue.”
The Democratic Party platform that was drafted four years ago, when Mr. Obama was first running for president, called for “full inclusion of all families, including same-sex couples, in the life of our nation, and support equal responsibility, benefits and protections.”
But the platform stopped short of endorsing same-sex marriages, in part because Mr. Obama had said he remained opposed.
Well, all bets are off now, because as we have all found out, all of Obama’s promises come with expiration dates.
Oh…and that whirring sound you hear? It’s the sound of Democrats like Scoop Jackson, Tip O’Neill, Hubert Humphrey, John F. Kennedy…and my parents…spinning in their graves.