The Politics of Resenting Those with Less
“We can't justify foreign aid funds which went to the purchase of extra wives for some tribal chiefs in Kenya.”
--Then-GE spokesman and sometime actor Ronald Reagan in a speech to the Young Republicans Convention in February 1964. “Our money” going to “bad black people” was merely a forerunner to Reagan's “welfare queen” stump speech in the 1970s, which helped Reagan ride into the White House in November 1980 and change the country.
The above quote is from “Before the Storm: Barry Goldwater and the Unmaking of the American Consensus,” by Rick Perlstein; pg. 336. (Much recommended.) According to Perlstein, the speech was received “with delerium” by Republicans, who obviously haven't changed much in the past 50 years. They're still filled with delerium. They're still fostering resentment of those with less. And they're still harping on Kenya.
Ronald Reagan in 1964.
Twitter: @ErikLundegaardTweets by @ErikLundegaard