On December 1816, delegates from several states met in Washington, D.C., and organized the American Colonization Society.
The delegates apparently voted to begin seeking removal of Black Americans back to Africa or wherever Congress thought the transition ought to take place.
They the funded and published a journal, “The African Repository”, for the purpose of perpetuating propaganda of Black inferiority and the need to “segregate the races”. This was done to win public support.
The Publication asserted such concepts as “Africans were ordained by God and the laws of nature to be inferior” and “They are to be pitied, but are doomed to remain inferior.”
The Colonization Society was led by clergy, college presidents, and officials from both the Republican and Democrat Party. It’s officers had included Daniel Webster, William H. Seward, Francis Scott Key, and Winfield Scott. It was praised and embraced by the legislatures of 14 states.
In 1829, the Pennsylvania Assembly endorsed the American Colonization Society and agreed that shipping Blacks back to Africa would be “highly auspicious to the best interests of our country.”
President Abraham Lincoln would later become the leading advocate of Colonization.
The following are his words in a “Speech on the Dred Scott decision” (June 26, 1857), where he criticized both political parties for not sufficiently championing Colonization:
“I have said that the separation of the races is the only perfect preventative of amalgamation. I have no right to say all the members of the Republican party are in favor of this, nor to say that as a party they are in favor of it. There is nothing in their platform directly on the subject. But I can say a very large proportion of its members are for it, and that the chief plank in their platform — opposition to the spread of slavery — is most favorable to that separation.
Such separation, if ever effected at all, must be effected by colonization; and no political party, as such, is now doing anything directly for colonization. Party operations at present only favor or retard colonization incidentally. The enterprise is a difficult one, but ‘when there is a will there is a way;’ and what colonization needs most is a hearty will. Will springs from the two elements of moral sense and self-interest.
Let us be brought to believe it is morally right, and, at the same time, favorable to, or, at least, not against, our interest, to transfer the African to his native clime, and we shall find a way to do it, however great the task may be.
The children of Israel, to such numbers as to include four hundred thousand fighting men, went out of Egyptian bondage in a body.”- President Abraham Lincoln
So while Lincoln and most Republicans in the 19th century were definitely not in favor of chattel slavery, most of them wanted absolutely nothing to do with the notion of social equality for Black Americans.
It was an interesting time, as Democrats in the south wanted to own and control Black Americans, many Northern Republicans wanted to get rid of them altogether.
The American Colonization Society spearheaded the establishment of the African colony of Liberia, where over 12,000 blacks were transported to. The total number of Black Americans shipped “Back to Africa” and other countries, due the efforts of the American Colonization Society, is said to be well over 15,000.
In the final analysis, it appears that both the Republican and the Democrat Party of the 21st Century have been engaged in a bit of historical revision, as neither have been completely transparent about its history of racism.
Many Republicans love to shout on rooftops how they freed Blacks, championed civil rights bills, etc., and how Black Americans are indebted to the Republican Party.
Nevertheless, for all the accusations of Black Americans today being ignorant of knowledge about the history of the Democrat Party’s perpetuation of racism against Blacks, it could be reasonably argued that most Republicans today are without any substantial knowledge of the GOP’s role in perpetuating discrimination against Black Americans throughout its history.
Dr. Martin L. King, Jr. was well aware of it, which prompted him to say:
“Actually, the Negro has been betrayed by both the Republican and the Democratic party. The Democrats have betrayed him by capitulating to the whims and caprices of the Southern Dixiecrats. The Republicans have betrayed him by capitulating to the blatant hypocrisy of reactionary right wing northern Republicans. And this coalition of southern Dixiecrats and right wing reactionary northern Republicans defeats every bill and every move towards liberal legislation in the area of civil rights.”- Dr. Martin L. King
This is why it is so important to pledge our loyalty to Constitutional Principles and Biblical ethics rather than blindly follow the rhetoric of partisan politics, which, with smooth words and fine speeches, often deceives the minds of the miseducated and disinformed constituents in both the Republican and Democrat Parties.