RNC clarifies tweet that suggests racism is over
December 2nd, 2013
09:02 AM ET
1 year ago

RNC clarifies tweet that suggests racism is over

(CNN) – As the Republican National Committee has been working to expand its outreach to African-Americans, it now finds itself playing defense after a well-intentioned but unpolished tweet honoring the legacy of Rosa Parks seemed to ignite some backlash.

The RNC on Sunday, commemorating the day Parks was arrested in 1955, sent out a tweet to recognize the civil rights activist.

"Today we remember Rosa Parks' bold stand and her role in ending racism," its Twitter page read. Attached was a photo of a young Parks.

A few hours after the original tweet, the RNC tweeted a clarification on the latter end of the statement.

"Previous tweet should have read "Today we remember Rosa Parks' bold stand and her role in fighting to end racism," the tweet stated.

But the initial tweet had already sparked reactions from people who took issue with the phrase suggesting that racism has ended. Some people on Twitter started using the hash tag "#RacismEndedWhen," with many taking a sarcastic tone.

Also on Sunday, roughly around the same time as the original tweet, the RNC sent out an email with a message celebrating Parks. The statement included a similar line as the original tweet, but more accurately stated Parks played a role in "fighting racism and ending segregation."

"We remember and honor Rosa Parks today for the role she played in fighting racism and ending segregation. At the same time we rededicate ourselves to the causes of justice and equal opportunity," RNC Chairman Reince Priebus said.

"Rosa Parks was a hero of the civil rights movement," he also said. "On this day 58 years ago, the 42-year-old seamstress took a bold stand-by staying seated. Her arrest ignited a bus boycott that challenged the injustice of segregation and in turn helped to change this nation for the better."

After GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney won only 6% of the African-American vote last year, the RNC has actively worked to change its tone and message to appeal to more African-Americans this year.

Just last month, it launched an African-American Engagement effort in Michigan, after starting similar outreach campaigns in other states, including New Jersey, North Carolina and Virginia.


Filed under: RNC
soundoff (397 Responses)
  1. Jack

    This is a non-story.

    December 2, 2013 06:38 pm at 6:38 pm |
  2. James Blatt

    Only in a media world run by liberals is this worthy of a front page placement.

    December 2, 2013 06:40 pm at 6:40 pm |
  3. lYNDON lINCOLN

    Democrats have the race baiting down pat. They have over a hundred 20 years of experience in enslaving, whipping, beating and taking credit for being the saviors. What a country of criminals.

    December 2, 2013 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  4. Joshua

    Liberals don't want racism to end, it's much too lucrative for them. But oh my goodness gracious someone forgot to add two words to a tweet. A tweet of all things. Let me say it again, A TWEET! And all the liberal race baiting hate mongers are having a conniption fit over absolutely nothing.

    December 2, 2013 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  5. Mav0k

    "This just in: Tweet with noble intent is misconstrued!"

    Seriously people, this tweeter posted something in honor of Rosa Parks and her deeds. If the wording wasn't exactly perfect oh well. This is another case of people trying to read between the lines when there's nothing there.

    December 2, 2013 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  6. Anonymous

    Today we remember Rosa Parks’ bold stand and her role in ending the Republican party

    December 2, 2013 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  7. Rachel

    Who cares.

    December 2, 2013 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  8. Henry Taylor

    Twitter is proof that people's fingers are faster than their brains.

    December 2, 2013 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  9. woodtime

    This is ironic because the GOP and its Tea Party thugs are trying as hard as the can to bring back segregation, deny voting rights to minorities and still can't accept that we have a black president.

    December 2, 2013 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  10. bearitstrong

    OK, the GOP made a slip-up... get over it.

    [I'm a registered Democrat]

    December 2, 2013 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  11. Belseth

    The GOP once again proves how out of touch with reality they are.

    December 2, 2013 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  12. goblackhawks

    The DEM's can't let racism end .. that is the only way they get elected. Jesse Jackson and Al "not so" Sharpton .. make their livings off racism.

    December 2, 2013 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  13. Roscoe Chait

    As usual, the RNC tripped on its on own tweet, thereby revealing its true feelings and beliefs.

    December 2, 2013 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  14. likeAplan

    As a Black Man, I feel that the original tweet was accurate...."ending" is a continuing thing. I am also a proud Democrat.

    December 2, 2013 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  15. GubnitSPY

    those poor souls don't have a bloody clue you better start mingling, maybe you should do some team building "down to the homeless shelter"

    December 2, 2013 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  16. Tychi

    This is the GOP trying to make you think they really care; and showing they do not. Laughable and pathetic.

    December 2, 2013 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  17. LWZRGHT

    I'm sorry. This is making a mountain out of a molehill. No, racism has not ended. But you can read that tweet to understand that she began the process. 140 characters is very limiting, and people and organizations tweet many times a day.

    We can't proceed with the political discourse unless we all just stop playing "Gotcha!"

    December 2, 2013 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  18. skarphace

    Not all people in the Tea Party are racists. However, the vast majority of racists associate with the Tea Party. It stands to reason that racists would think that all it would take is a statement praising a civil rights activist in order to prove that they are not racists. Hint: you will be judged on your actions, not your words.

    December 2, 2013 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  19. the last blackman standing

    oh wow...one black president (bi racial). growing numbers of eeoc complaints and bias. the republican party hasn't had a serious black person stand on their podium to receive the presidential nomination or put up one ofor at least vp. yeah. the only place it looks more fair and balanced is the fox news desk...pause...wait...wait...never mind. there was no applause. it's just smart business.

    December 2, 2013 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  20. Winfred Cook

    Is it me are am I detecting a trend here? I'm starting to see more republicans soften their rhetoric, and starting to sound more moderate. Is it because they're down in the polls. I mean way down in the polls. Are is it that 2014 is at hand and they are on their way out. Hurray!

    December 2, 2013 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  21. laughingskeptic

    Most of my white, midwestern, racist, tea party relatives who start too many of their sentences with "I'm not racist but ..." honestly believe that they are not racist and that racism has ended. Thankfully my parents moved out of Ohio when I was 5 and I grew up with a completely different world view than most of my relatives.

    December 2, 2013 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  22. Oscar

    The only group that still continues to racially profile is the black community itself.

    December 2, 2013 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  23. ghostwriter

    "And while we're on the subject of "racsim" 50% of White voted for Obama first and second time, 95% of Blacks voted for him both time. Who's racist? Clearly Black are far more racist than whites, so by your own logic since they vote for the Democratic Party, it must be the party that embraces racism."

    This is what we have to deal with. Not only is this person attempting to prove that not all conservatives are racists, he's also trying to prove that not all conservatives are stupid. And he fails miserably at both.

    December 2, 2013 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  24. regenesis0

    I feel bad because it's a tempest in a teacup - then I remember the systematic disenfranchisement being enacted by their party in virtually every state where they hold a majority to do so and I don't feel bad anymore.
    (I'm disappointed in myself for that; an illegitimate attack should be condemned even if the target of that attack sorely deserves it. Oh well.)

    December 2, 2013 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  25. Greg

    The internet is a series of tubes.

    December 2, 2013 07:25 pm at 7:25 pm |
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