RNC clarifies tweet that suggests racism is over
December 2nd, 2013
09:02 AM ET
11 months 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. barbequebob

    GOP is the party of mean, greedy, racists. Its their base, conning poorly educated working class whites into thinking that their life is getting harder because of "welfare queens" when in fact it is shipping out factory jobs overseas, plus tax cuts for the rich that is causing the working class whites to lose ground economically.

    December 2, 2013 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  2. atienne

    "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."

    Let me guess. They served fried chicken & watermelon and said... "see we understand you people"

    December 2, 2013 07:29 pm at 7:29 pm |
  3. Justin Davis

    RNC, and all that follow them can only be characterized as being throat deep in the Koop-aide and not recognizing the flavor.......

    December 2, 2013 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  4. Edwin

    I really like that comment, max.

    December 2, 2013 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  5. Logic N L.A.

    There is so much wrong with the original statement and the correction. Rosa Parks fought racial injustice but hardly had an impact other than bringing it to light. It took the Johnson administration to bring about change – at least by law. and even then, it was years before the south embraced real change. Unfortunately, it still exists today.

    December 2, 2013 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  6. Calcommuter

    These unfortunate tweets followed a previous statement from the GOP on Thursday that "we should all celebrate Thanksgiving while millions of families in need have a hearty meal, thus ending hunger in America." The tweet was clarified later to say "We meant to say millions of families have had their monthly allotted amount of food stamps decreased due to the inability of Congress to make a decision".

    December 2, 2013 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  7. pk

    Too pathetic....GOP and their utter IGNORANCE and STUPIDITY..at its' finest.

    December 2, 2013 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
  8. blakenaustin

    If the far left has any say in the matter racism will never end. They will look they other way at hard core racism that is far too prevalent in the African American community. And they will cheer on race baiting by the liberal media.

    December 2, 2013 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  9. Sumguy2006

    It's amazing what makes it into the news these days. This sounds like a glorified typo.

    December 2, 2013 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  10. Missy

    The RNC will not be the judge!!!

    December 2, 2013 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  11. DNA

    Mitt Romney believes God changed his mind about black people in 1978. Thank you God for ending racism in 1978.

    December 2, 2013 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  12. John Tater

    What nonsense. I think the GOP is the devil incarnate, but saying Rosa Parks had a role in ending racism doesn't mean the GOP thinks racism is ended.

    December 2, 2013 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  13. Ed

    I'm sure the interpreted meaning of the original tweet was unintended, but the irony is, that the unintended meaning is exactly the current GOP platform – that racism is ended and all government programs protecting against it should end.

    December 2, 2013 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  14. Wade

    If it has been any dem that had said it no one would have noticed. LOL Seams like the bigotry and hate is alive and well from the left.

    December 2, 2013 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  15. Dave

    According to the GOP racism never exists because they've never been subjected to it or witnessed it.

    December 2, 2013 08:09 pm at 8:09 pm |
  16. Steve

    As long as there are Democrats keeping anger alive, racism will remain.

    December 2, 2013 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  17. Jessie

    It backfired? No, it didn't. It just shows how absurd the twitter crowd and media can be when somebody they don't agree with makes a mistake. Clearly somebody messed up, and clearly they corrected it. Let it go. If it was any other political party (like there are so many, right?) it wouldn't be on CNN's front page or any other MSM.

    December 2, 2013 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  18. Bee Lade

    Fight to end racism. Not racism ended...

    Brain dead much?

    December 2, 2013 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  19. Fr. J.C.

    "Mitt Romney won only 6% of the African-American vote..." This says all that needs to be said about the GOP's relationship with blacks.

    December 2, 2013 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  20. Moores rule

    It will end when the great white people of America end it. And embrace all American Blacks, and the industries that made so much money pay back to the American blacks who built those companies one their feet with their hands and at the end of the slave masters wips.

    December 2, 2013 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  21. surfsock1

    You know what else backfired? Obamacare. Put that in your pipe you mealy minded trolls.

    December 2, 2013 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  22. ImvotingforHillary

    After the way they have treated Obama with their racist attacks they have lost the black vote for years.

    December 2, 2013 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  23. Kinard

    The fact is racism has been and always will be with us. If we were to ever lose our ability to hate and prejudge others, we'd lose our will to live. It's a shame but it's the truth. As long as there are two people on earth, and one person has what the other wants or wants to enslave the other for monetary purpose, there's bound to be trouble. That trouble can come in many ways, and racism will more than likely be one of the top three implemented.

    December 2, 2013 08:34 pm at 8:34 pm |
  24. Milwaukee Eastsider

    Methinks its best if the GOP keep their traps shut on issues of race. All they do is stick their foot in their mouth & step deeper in doo doo. They are just clueless wihen it comes to issues affecting people of color. The GOP has been so busy being against minorities that they come off sounding like bufoons when they try & do something in favor of minorities

    December 2, 2013 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
  25. Fr33th1nk3r

    Wow. What a petty gripe to make.... Half of "racism" today is due to the hyper-sensitivity and narcissism some minorities have over anything that has to do with "race".

    December 2, 2013 08:41 pm at 8:41 pm |
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