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Texas Democrats Exploit Civil Rights Era Song to Push Anti-Election Integrity Agenda

Texas Democrats sing "We Shall Overcome" at the U.S. Capitol to protest a Republican voting law (Credit: ABC News)

Just when you thought they couldn’t sink any lower, Texas Democrats decided to make an utter spectacle of themselves at the U.S. Capitol. After beclowning themselves by fleeing the state to break quorum in an effort to stop Republican voting legislation, they showed up at the Capitol building to stage a photo op in which they sang “We Shall Overcome” to protest the passage of the bill.

ABC News tweeted a video along with a link to an article discussing the controversy showing these lawmakers singing the song in a pathetic attempt to virtue signal. If your ears can handle it, you can watch the clip below:

As RedState’s Bonchie explained:

As to why they are doing this, it’s largely being blamed on Texas’ voter security bill, which is just a run-of-the-mill list of general reforms setting standards for the voting system, many of which were blown up for the “emergency” of 2020. It’s not Jim Crow and it’s certainly not worth these people abandoning their constituents over.

The Democratic lawmakers announced their political stunt on Monday in a joint statement released to the public. The legislators notified Texans that they “stand united in our decision to break quorum and refuse to let the Republican-led legislature force through dangerous legislation that would trample on Texans’ freedom to vote.”

The statement also explained that these individuals would travel to the Capitol building to continue their protest. Vice President Kamala Harris lauded the move, stating that she applauded “the effort of the Texas legislators who are standing in the way of a blatant attempt to suppress the vote.”

Republicans reacted in harsh fashion, with Gov. Greg Abbott threatening to arrest the lawmakers when they finish their tantrum and return to the Lone Star State. If the governor follows through on his promise, he might consider levying additional charges for the frightfully off-key crooning of these attention-hungry lawmakers.

But of all the different ways these lawmakers could have expressed their opposition to the voting legislation, why would they choose a song like “We Shall Overcome?”

First, we must understand the song’s history. “We Shall Overcome” is an iconic piece of music that was used to galvanize protesters marching for civil rights in the 1960s and before. NPR notes that the “first political use came in 1945 in Charleston, S.C.” during a strike against the American Tobacco company.

But later, the song became a rallying cry for black Americans seeking equality. NPR also noted that “the song was carried by the civil rights movement throughout the South,” and that “its power and promise turned up in the speeches and sermons of King.”

Given its significance to the struggle against Jim Crow laws and other forms of oppression that black America had to overcome, it is clear why these Democrats decided to butcher sing this song during their stunt. The left has become fond of labeling any legislative attempt at ensuring election integrity as “Jim Crow 2.0.”

In this way, these people seek to bastardize the iconography of the civil rights movement, which was an authentic struggle for equality, and use it to persuade the American people that their fight against laws that clearly would not prevent black people from voting is somehow similar to the crusade taken up by people like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X.

While it is possible that at least some might truly believe that their shenanigans are akin to those who marched in Selma – bless their hearts – it is difficult to accept the notion that most of these people aren’t aware their politicking is nothing like what African Americans were engaged in during the 1960s. To put it simply, they have no problem exploiting the horrific memory of Jim Crow to achieve their political objectives.

These individuals do not seem to care that they are demeaning the experience of those who actually suffered under legitimate oppression. By likening their struggle to this particular battle over election laws, they are watering down the significance of the movement. It is nothing more than an insulting ploy designed to earn them plaudits and media attention.

It is for this, and several other reasons, that I constantly insist on pointing out what has become evident: Democrats do not care about black people. They view us as nothing more than political pawns to be used when it is politically expedient.

The reality that these individuals are willing to use a song that remains an important reminder to black Americans of the evil we defeated is indicative of how far these people are willing to go to manipulate the masses. It’s one thing to speak out against legislation with which they disagree. It’s quite another to cynically take advantage of one of the most important symbols of the battle for equality in America.