July 14th, 2010
07:19 AM ET
13 years ago

Sarah Palin responds to allegations of Tea Party racism

(CNN) - Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin published the following message on her Facebook page on Tuesday night:

The Charge of Racism: It’s Time to Bury the Divisive Politics of the Past

I am saddened by the NAACP’s claim that patriotic Americans who stand up for the United States of America’s Constitutional rights are somehow “racists.” The charge that Tea Party Americans judge people by the color of their skin is false, appalling, and is a regressive and diversionary tactic to change the subject at hand.

President Reagan called America’s past racism “a legacy of evil” against which we have seen the long struggle of minority citizens for equal rights. He condemned any sort of racism, as all good and decent people do today. He also called it a “point of pride for all Americans” that as a nation, we have successfully struggled to overcome this evil. Reagan rightly declared that “there is no room for racism, anti-Semitism, or other forms of ethnic and racial hatred in this country,” and he warned that we must never go back to the racism of our past.

His words rang especially true in the immediate aftermath of the 2008 presidential election. It seemed that with the election of our first black president, our country had become a new “post-racial” society. As one writer in the Washington Post stated: “[Barack Obama’s] election isn’t just about a black president. It’s about a new America. The days of confrontational identity politics have come to an end.”

We, as a united people, applauded that sentiment. We were proud of that progress. That’s why it is so sad to see that 18 months later, the NAACP is once again using the divisive language of the past to unfairly accuse the Tea Party movement of harboring “racist elements.”

Having been on the receiving end of a similar spurious charge of racism (in a recent frivolous lawsuit which was finally dismissed by a federal judge), I know how Tea Party Americans feel to be falsely accused. To be unjustly accused of association with what Reagan so aptly called that “legacy of evil” is a traumatizing experience, and one of which the honest, freedom-loving patriots of the Tea Party movement are truly undeserving.

On this subject, I can recommend the statement issued by a man I was proud to endorse, Tim Scott, the GOP candidate from South Carolina’s First Congressional District. Tim, poised to become the first African-American Republican Congressman from the former Confederacy since Reconstruction, is himself a sign of a hopeful, truly post-racial future for our country. It gives added meaning to his warning that “the NAACP is making a grave mistake in stereotyping a diverse group of Americans who care deeply about their country and who contribute their time, energy and resources to make a difference.”

The only purpose of such an unfair accusation of racism is to dissuade good Americans from joining the Tea Party movement or listening to the common sense message of Tea Party Americans who simply want government to abide by our Constitution, live within its means, and not borrow and spend away our children’s futures. Red and yellow, black and white, this message is precious in all our sights. All decent Americans abhor racism. No one wants to be associated with any organization that is in any way racist in sentiment or origin. I certainly don’t want to be. Thankfully, the Tea Party movement is not racist or motivated by racism. It is motivated by love of country and all that is good and honest about our proud and diverse nation.

Like President Reagan, Tea Party Americans believe that “the glory of this land has been its capacity for transcending the moral evils of our past.” Isn’t it time we put aside the divisive politics of the past once and for all and celebrate the fact that neither race nor gender is any longer a barrier to achieving success in America – even in achieving the highest office in the land?

I just spent a few beautiful Alaskan days with some beautiful Americans in my husband’s birthplace – they are Todd’s family and they are Yupik Eskimo. In the decades that our families have blended, I have never heard one proud, patriotic member judge another member based on skin color. Both Todd and I were raised to measure a person according to their capacity and willingness to love, work, forgive, contribute, and show good character. We’re joined by the vast majority of Americans in this belief whereby we measure a man by his character, not his color. Because of amazing efforts and accomplishments by those who came before my generation, it is foreign to us to consider condemning or condoning anyone’s actions based on race or gender. Being with our diverse family in a melting pot that is a Native village just days ago reminded me of that.

So to leave that remote village and return back to “modern civilization” only to hear of the NAACP’s resolution today suggesting that we Tea Party Americans don’t respect equality makes me sad for those who choose to divide these great United States. It is time to end the divisive politics.

– Sarah Palin

Filed under: NAACP • Popular Posts • Sarah Palin • Tea Party movement
soundoff (84 Responses)
  1. AEK

    Come on, you guys! Reporting on another Facebook entry by Sarah Palin, REALLY?

    July 14, 2010 07:42 am at 7:42 am |
  2. Bunnie

    Uh, Sarah, Eskimos are not the demographic of the NAACP. I know non-whites must all look alike to you, but they are not. And please, quit quoting Jesus songs - it's pathetic.

    July 14, 2010 07:46 am at 7:46 am |
  3. stephen

    The NAACP has forgotten their ancestry with which their organization (which was started by two WHITE Republicans) was created.


    July 14, 2010 07:52 am at 7:52 am |
  4. Rich

    I note that sister Sarah had to go all the way back to Reagan to find a condemation of racism!!! Why couldn't she stand up and say that she condemns any and all forms of racism? Sounds like a diversion to me. I know what I see and hear, and I see a lot of racism in the TEAr party movement (the r stands for racism).

    July 14, 2010 07:53 am at 7:53 am |
  5. Todd

    NAACP is a JOKE! They only complain about racism when republicans are involved. SHAME ON THEM!!!

    July 14, 2010 07:53 am at 7:53 am |
  6. Susie

    So the woman who ran the most divisive, race baiting VP campaign in recent times is suddenly "proud" of our President? What were you smoking up there in Alaska, Sarah? You and your copywriter sure know how to make use of catch phrases, but somehow, a woman who supports Alaska secession AND the unity of the states comes off as a liar, again. You cannot have it both ways.
    I'd also like to talk to the native Alaskans you let starve while you were Governor until the press got interested in their plight.
    "Both Todd and I were raised to measure a person according to their capacity and willingness to love, work, forgive, contribute, and show good character. We’re joined by the vast majority of Americans in this belief whereby we measure a man by his character, not his color."
    That is the best quote of all, coming from you! You are becoming a joke, Sarah. A very cruel joke on America.

    July 14, 2010 07:56 am at 7:56 am |
  7. Hot Dog

    If any body thinks that this woman wrote what is written above is just as crazy as she is. Her political stand on issues are divisive and yes the Tea Party is a racist organization.

    July 14, 2010 07:56 am at 7:56 am |
  8. Raymond

    good article. I am not a Palin fan. I am sick of being considered a racist based on my political view of the current president. i voted for Obama in the faith that he would not abuse/use the race card. i was wrong. the naacp's action against the tea party is an obvious action manifest from Obama's political team. i.e. isolate good americans that disagree with my policy as racist. it is obvious with the actions being taken in Arizona, Obama is casting out the white vote. best of luck to him in 2012, he is going to need it.

    July 14, 2010 07:58 am at 7:58 am |
  9. AmericanFlag

    Reagan also put Saddam Hussein in power and financed Osama bin Laden as well as the Sandanistas, etc. so I'm not sure he is one I'd be quoting to make a moral point !!

    July 14, 2010 07:58 am at 7:58 am |
  10. Charlie in Maine

    "It is time to end the divisive politics."

    I agree with Governor Palin.

    July 14, 2010 07:59 am at 7:59 am |
  11. Go HOme Sarah


    You guys have turned into the National Enquirer.

    July 14, 2010 08:01 am at 8:01 am |
  12. forwardgal

    This from the person who has been the worst name-caller in history? This from a person who knows NOTHING? This from a person who is one of the most divisive characters in politics?This from a person who says 'bury the...politics of the past? She is is the worst person to be saying any of this. She is a liar and a trouble-maker. Perhaps she should go hide somewhere and then some of this would stop. She and her 'tea-partyers' are warped and skewed in their sick thinking. It's one thing to be against big government and taxes – though that is our history – but she and they resort to nastiness beyond compare. I've seen the signs, heard the racist slurs on news, seen the flags waved, seen the rednecks she courts. Does she think we are as stupid as she is?

    July 14, 2010 08:04 am at 8:04 am |
  13. Horace Ramtahal

    Listen, you wicked human being. I have so-called White friends who are members of your illustrious group, who like whispering sweet nothings in my ear about them "nig.ers." It is insidious how sweet, innocent, and reasonable they sound as they attack the First Black president of this great nation. If you could look yourself in the mirror and still be "saddened" by the action of the NAACP, then you are a bigger idiot than that dumb arse look you give, when thinking you are being cute. What does "saddened" means to you? You are racist, and you belong to a racist group of people, all on a feeding frenzy, bullying your way to power. Draped in the flag, soccer mom, and apple pie you lead a gullible group of people, who are draping their racist values, in the same. My mother used to say, you can bathe a pig in milk, it will still be a pig. Look in the mirror and try practicing looking "saddened." The day will come, as the law of Karma dictates, that you will have to deal with the consequences of your action. Till then, get back to putting your lipstick on, stand there, and look pretty-saddened does not become you.

    July 14, 2010 08:04 am at 8:04 am |
  14. larry

    Sarah needs to tell her racist tea party members that .....the racist signs they had at those rallies said some of the tea party are racist

    July 14, 2010 08:04 am at 8:04 am |
  15. Gil

    This statement of Palin the Pathetic just shows how blind she is to the truth. She helped create this nut case group of extremist right wing Party of No. I hope that the turth will show she is the problem and not any part of a solution.

    July 14, 2010 08:08 am at 8:08 am |
  16. mbc

    Sorry Sarah, but you've contibuted much to the divisive politics you speak of. Does "death panels" ring a bell? If have not witnessed some of the racist elements in the tea party then you've just turned a blind eye. And if racism is not a driving force for these "patriots" then where were they when the Bush administration was spending us into complete disaster?

    July 14, 2010 08:09 am at 8:09 am |
  17. Ricky Atlanta

    Has she ever been to a Tea Party or HER own Rally before?... You see more signs for HATE and RACISM than you see for "Patriotism"... and hiding your "BIGOTRY" under the American Flag is Appalling in its self...

    July 14, 2010 08:10 am at 8:10 am |
  18. Dale

    Where is the president and first lady? Why are they not condeming this? If they don't then they support the NAACP.
    This is truely unbelievable. Do they really want a racial war? We are sick of this crap.

    July 14, 2010 08:11 am at 8:11 am |
  19. russ139

    Reagan, raised in the Midwest, and long a resident (and former Governor) of California... found reason to announce his candidacy for President ... in Philadelphia, Mississippi. Go figure. And, with a speech laden with multiple mentions of "states rights." This, only 15 years after the brutal Civil Rights debate that so angered southern whites.

    Like so many other good conservatives, Reagan and Palin both share a simple philosophy: claim to be unbiased, and therefore you are. (There that was easy!)

    Little do they understand, nor likely care, that racial prejudice (even remotely subtle prejudice) is measured, not by how it's intended, but by how it's received.

    July 14, 2010 08:12 am at 8:12 am |
  20. slipthalo

    Again, she knows not of what she speaks. The Tea Party gang is most comprised of racists and racist rants and ideas.

    July 14, 2010 08:14 am at 8:14 am |
  21. charles

    President reagan, how about you? The problem with our leaders is they are always in denial. I dont agree that all people in tea party are racist, but it would be wrong as a leader to say no to the accusation. If it was me i would have phrased it differently. Its wrong too for the NAACP’s to entirely generalize while making such a big statement.

    July 14, 2010 08:15 am at 8:15 am |
  22. c.jordan

    Sarah Palin did not write that statement. She doesn't have the reading or writing skills, like many members of the TEA party. They know hatred bigotry and methods to destroy the President. Comparing the President to Hitler crossed the line. And yes, that attitude is reflected by far too many in the Tea Party.

    July 14, 2010 08:15 am at 8:15 am |
  23. The Big J

    These people opened a can of worms that they now don't want to admit to. History will not be kind to the loudmouthed actions of the tea party. In fact, it will show them to be a lunatic fringe operation pandered to by power hungry GOP politicians. These petulant folks would rather scream & cry than offer a real solution to anything.

    July 14, 2010 08:15 am at 8:15 am |
  24. Lobo

    Did this tool write about DIVISIVE politics??? Are you serious???? I really wish she would just go away. FAR AWAY. What a hypocrite!. This idiot has done NOTHING but divide Americans. "patriotic Americans" indeed.

    July 14, 2010 08:15 am at 8:15 am |
  25. Henry Miller, Libertarian

    "Racism" is an accusation that is made by organisations such as the NAACP when they can't come up with any rational, factual, basis by which to register their displeasure with individuals or groups that oppose their positions. It's name-calling, pure and simple.

    In this case, the fact of the matter is that the NAACP strongly supports the Democratic Party, the Tea Parties oppose the Democratic Party, therefore the Tea Parties, in the eyes of the NAACP, merit all the scorn and contumely that can be hurled at them, justifiable, factual, or not. Since the NAACP apparently can't come up with any substantive counter to the Tea Partiers philosophies, the only thing they have left is name-calling. It's just politics, and mud-slinging politics at that.

    July 14, 2010 08:18 am at 8:18 am |
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