Those of us who remember the affirmative action wars of the 1990s aren’t surprised when some right-winger suggests that Democrats are anti-white: such rhetoric was commonplace among vehement opponents of affirmative action, who often accused Democratic supporters of the policy of trying to disadvantage Caucasians (for example, the late National Review writer and libertarian talk-radio host David Brudnoy would often claim on his program that supporters of affirmative action were engaged in “active retribution” against whites.) So the recent proclamations of Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL) (who insists that the Democratic Party is engaged in a “war on whites”) simply continue a sad right-wing tradition.

Back in the 1990s, the same right-wingers who accused pro-affirmative-action Democrats of disliking whites also insisted that nonwhites must reject the so-called “politics of victimology”: Brudnoy, Thomas Sowell, Larry Elder, Walter E. Williams and other right-wing pundits would routinely lambaste progressive political figures who were allegedly trying to get people of color to think of themselves as victims in need of government assistance. I guess we weren’t supposed to pick up on the contradiction of encouraging whites to think of themselves as victims, while simultaneously encouraging nonwhites not to do the same (and presupposing, of course, that nonwhites did).

RNC chair Reince Prebius is trying to do some damage control, and in the immortal words of Rush Limbaugh, I hope he fails. As for Brooks, I assume this makes him the first Republican in a long time willing to run on an antiwar platform.

D.R. Tucker

D. R. Tucker is a Massachusetts-based journalist who has served as the weekend contributor for the Washington Monthly since May 2014. He has also written for the Huffington Post, the Washington Spectator, the Metrowest Daily News, investigative journalist Brad Friedman's Brad Blog and environmental journalist Peter Sinclair's Climate Crocks.