tv The Reid Out MSNBC July 14, 2021 4:00pm-5:00pm PDT
imagine if these words became the moral mission of america. the difference that would have made. the beat is over. the read out starts right now with joy reid. hi, joy. >> welcome back, ari. did you bring me back anything from vaca? nothing? just love. >> i'm bringing you all the good vibes and a mean naoko lad da as soon as we can meet up in the same studio. >> that sounds like a plan. thank you very much. have a great evening. all right, guys. good evening, everyone. we begin "the reid out" with the most important and most debated political question of the moment. what is happening to the republican party? our country, our democracy is currently under siege by one of our two major political parties.
one controlled by a twice impeached one-term president who's more jim jones than george washington. a party that, thanks to donald trump's rabbit hole of conspiracy theories, white grievance and an unquenchable thirst for power embraces causes that were once viewed as fringe. things like abortion bounty hunting. now the law in texas. banning books, really any idea that doesn't render every single white american in history going all the way back to 1619 and right up to today as innocent and benevolent. even as a noose literally hung outside the u.s. capitol just six months ago. it's a party that's committed to turning domestic terrorists into martyrs and freedom fighters while launching a crusade against the covid vaccine, now any vaccine, even if that leaves america more vulnerable to sickness and suffering and death and anyone who's encouraging you to stay alive by taking the
vaccine, they're called neonazis. remember when these ideas were relegated to some cookie corner of the internet when erasing a politician's crime sounded like putin. not too long ago our idea of the republican fringe were people in tricolor hats getting angry about a black president. this new fringe ate that fringe for breakfast and it's taken over the mainstream republican politics. it all culminates in the bizarre row world doing everything in their power to make it so hard for you to vote that you can never vote them out. you know what they call that? a dictatorship. and as in all autocracies, what's fueling all of it is the chief autocrat's big lie, something james talarico took on head on while standing in the belly of the beast, fox news. >> you have made a lot of money personally and you've enriched a lot of corporations with
advertising by getting on here and spewing lies and conspiracy theories so what i'm asking you to do is tell your voters that donald trump lost the election. can you -- >> you resolved the lie that -- >> did you not hear what i asked? >> at least he resolved the idea -- >> did donald trump lose the election in 2020? can you answer the question? did donald trump lose the election? >> i think i'm answering the questions. i don't really feel any obligation to answer anything. >> is this an uncomfortable question for you. >> my question is why are you in washington, d.c., and not in texas? >> the texas state representative in that clip joins me now along with sochi inohosa and stewart lincoln. i have to start with you representative talarico. kudos to you for standing up to the big lie. can you talk about how that big lie about the election has impacted your constituents?
because that seems to be why you're in d.c. right now. >> the big lie is the only reason i'm on this show talking to you right now. if it wasn't for donald trump's lie that the election was stolen in 2020 i'd be back at my desk in the texas state capitol working on early childhood legislation, i wouldn't be here fighting for my constituents and their sacred right to vote. that's what we have to understand. all of this is because of one man's inability to accept factual reality and because of one party's complicity with that big lie. so i was proud to go into the lion's den and expose that big lie for what it is. we can't treat voter suppression as a legitimate issue to be debated in the public square. it's not. it is not like any other issue. it is foundational, it is functional and eroding that is antiamerican and undemocratic. i'm proud to stand with my party here in washington, d.c.
>> you were a middle school teacher i think you said in that middle segment? >> that's exactly right. i am a texan. we are a rowdy bunch and we know how to fight. >> clearly texans know how to fight. what did you teach in middle school? what subject? >> sixth grade language arts. >> language arts. i have to ask you just as somebody who as you said sixth or seventh generation texan in the south, governing in the south, the atmosphere that republicans have created. has that filtered down to the level of, you know, the kids in your former school, their parents? what kind of atmosphere has been created by this zeal against history, against voting? does it feel as much like war on the ground as it feels to us watching it happen here in d.c.? >> absolutely. before i was a politician i was a middle school teacher, as you mentioned. i taught on the west side of san antonio, beautiful historic mexican-american neighborhood.
i only taught black and brown students and they and their families are the ones that are targeted by these types of extremist pieces of legislation, particularly this voter suppression bill. when i ran for office i ran to improve my community and i took a sacred oath in front of god, in front of my students, in front of my constituents to uphold the constitution, not to uphold greg abbott's extremist agenda. i'm doing that here in washington, d.c. i am fighting more my constituents' right to vote and my former students and their right to vote and their family's right to vote. i am doing my job. even though i'm not in austin, i'm doing my job. unlike our home state senator of ted cruz, i'm leaving the state to serve my constituents, not to abandon them. >> amen to that. sochi, the reason i wanted representative to describe the way it feels on the ground, i think a lot of folks worry that democrats in washington aren't
reacting with the same level of urgency that representative talarico and his fellow democrats are. the sense in d.c. is that, well, you know, we'll do a couple bipartisan deals and, you know, we'll pass a nice juneteenth law, everything will be fine. i worry that that's what they think. do you get the sense that that's what they think? >> well, it does worry me as well. you have these texas state representatives who are in the minority and have been in the minority for some time. they're using every tool in their arsenal to stop a voter suppression bill right now and to protect black and brown people to make sure that they have the right to vote. that says a lot. they don't have very many tools but they're using everything. i think this has happened three times in history where they were able to break for them and now they're all in washington, d.c. they're pressuring the white house and congress to act and yet you don't have democrats who control the white house, the house and the senate necessarily
acting right now. i do think that -- i mean, it would be a major contrast for democrats right now to deliver on voting rights. you have a republican party right now who continues to back donald trump and the big lie and the majority of americans don't stand on the side of republicans, they actually stand on the side of protecting voting rights. so it is a win-win for democrats right now and what the american people want to see is bold action from the democratic party and that is my hope that happens in the near future. >> stewart, let me go to you real quick. let me play for you the texas governor, greg abbott, tweeted out a video in which he defended the law that they're trying to pass that will limit the ability to vote. take a listen. >> president biden and the democrats must stop the misinformation. texas is very simply making it easier to vote and harder to cheat. >> that is the talking point.
the easier to vote, harder to cheat talking point. it's easy to understand when you read the letter of the law that is not true. i wonder if democrats are because of the way that it's being framed by republicans, republican framing always seems to win because they're good at it, it's sort of a nest at the advertising d.c. democrats. do you understand why democrats seem -- in d.c. seem much more to be prioritizing cutting deals with republicans and doing bipartisan bills with them and normalizing them than having the urgency to say, this is not -- this is not a normal republican party? i say this all the time. my father was -- if he had been an american citizen would have been a republican. he loved the republican party. he was a raganite. he's rolling in his grave saying, what is this? do you think they're anesthetized? >> greg abbott won't admit that
the president of the united states is not a legal president is not someone to listen to when it comes to the truth. it's straight up lie. look, i think democrats have to nationalize this election and i was one of those republicans on the other side that was not so bad at nationalizing election. they have to make 2022 a referendum on democracy. i think what's happening with the texas democrats is a tremendous help towards that. they've got to elevate this. it's not about this little bill and that little bill, it's got to be about something big, something that's patriotic, people fought and died for to defend. now i get that they're balanced with this. democrats still are a governing party. they actually want to govern. they want to get things done unlike the republican party which has become an autocratic movement. so i get the push and pull but, i mean, here in the lincoln project we don't have to defend any of that, we can just speak about it being an autocracy and we know these people well.
to win this election in 2022 which is going to be very tough for democrats to do, they're going to have to nationalize this around the great threat and that great threat is a threat for this. >> i want to go back to representative talarico. you did not, i'm sure, run for office thinking that your cause was going to be defending american democracy from the other major political party, right? none of us really thought that the threat would be much greater from within than ever thinking about any foreign threat at this point, so i guess i wonder as you look at the coming election, how much jeopardy are we in if the laws in the state of texas become not just standard there but all over the country? >> yeah. this is an historic moment. we just celebrated america's 244th birthday and if we want this american experiment to survive for 244 more years, we have to act now.
and as was mentioned, texas democrats are the ultimate minority. we don't hold the majority in the house, we don't hold the majority in the state senate, we don't have the governor's mansion and yet we were able too find a way to stop this bill in its tracks and stand up for voting rights at the same time. we're not asking joe manchin to sacrifice very much. all we're asking is that he make one exception to one senate rule to save this american experiment of ours. so many of my colleagues are making tremendous sacrifices, they're leaving behind kids, they're leaving behind elderly parents, they're leaving behind sick loved ones. one of my colleagues canceled her wedding to be able to break quorum and cancel this bill. the contrast between what we've had to do and what joe manchin has to do couldn't be more stark. obviously joe manchin's task ahead is nothing compared to the sacrifices that brave americans from normandy to selma had to do to protect the sacred right of
people. >> your governor is acting like a jim crow governor threatening to arrest people. the people who made joe biden the nominee are the very voters being attacked now in these states. he said he was always going to have those voters' back. he said that out loud. it's on tape. is he going to allow joe manchin and krystin sinema's love and devotion to the filibuster force them to break faith with those voters? is that what's happening? is he going to force the president to break faith with the people that voted him in? >> i think president biden is committed to ensuring something happens. if we continue to see that there is no action, then i do think that you will eventually see the white house put their political muscle around this to end a legislative procedure that makes no sense right now when it comes to voting rights, right, that's
standing in the way. one of the things you should have clipped of governor abbott is misinformation. one of the things that's lost in the messaging is that republicans in texas, the indicted attorney general in texas actually admitted that the whole reason why this was happening is because in places like in harris county in houston, texas, one of the largest counties in texas, they would have mailed applications to african-american and latino voters that they would have -- >> would have lost. >> would have lost the election in texas. >> yeah. >> one of the things the democrats must continue to do is to tell people exactly why they're doing this. combat the republican lies that are in the state. and i've seen the texas democrats do a great job of that. >> i know we're out of time but very quickly before we go, i want to tell you guys as you are calling your senators and everybody about these two bills. hr 1 which you hear us talking a lot about, for the people act, this is an ambitious proposal.
it would transform everything about elections, everything from campaign financing to the way that gerrymandering works and all of that sort of thing. the john lewis act is a much narrower bill that just addresses reversing the 2013 supreme court ruling that made it harder to block racially discriminatory voting laws. putting preclearance back in. all the other stuff, all the other stuff is in hr 1, meaning the campaign finance changes, making it easier to vote, making it harder to gerrymander. last word to you, stewart. if we don't do this, then what happens in your view? >> well, look, i think it's our inability to imagine what will happen. >> yeah. >> which is dangerous. it is a replaying of 9/11. we cannot imagine this attack on america. we have to get out of that. we call it the american experiment because it could have failed. it was an experiment and it's up to us to defend that. >> absolutely.
texas state representative james talirico, cheers to you and all of the texas dems. thank you very much. you guys are great. up next on "the reid out" white republicans say they know more about the teachings than martin luther king. >> dr. bernice king, help me out here! the ceo of the king center and daughter of dr. martin luther king herself joins us. michael wolf's frightening abdication of his duties as he pursued the big lie. as singer olivia rodrigo joins the fight, tonight's absolute worst are doing the opposite, fighting science instead. plus, my thoughts on the separate but equal doctrine in plexi versus ferguson in today's gq feed. "the reid out" continues after this. and come straight from the earth.
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republicans have been doing a thing where they piously defend their partisan calculated war on history by invoking the reverend dr. martin luther king jr. they repurpose his words to use him as a shield when defending their jim crow era on facts. take a look. >> you're hearing a lot about critical race theory. what is it? this is a form of teaching that teaches our kids that america is systemically racist and that you're either an oppressor or a victim and judge a person by the color of their skin not the content of their character. >> if the reverend dr. king famously said, and he was right, we should judge our fellow citizens by the content of their character not by the color of their skin. mr. president, we need a strong nation with strong citizens who see each other as americans, not as oppressors or oppressed.
>> critical race theory goes against everything martin luther king has said. don't judge us by the color of our skin and now they're embracing it. they're going backwards. >> in doing so they managed to miss the breadth of his teaches. what they failed to note is he spoke regularly about eradicating racism, militarism and poverty. he called for just and eke wittable housing. he demanded people be provided a livable wage and he worked to prevent voter suppression, a mission that remains just as urgent today as it was in 1963 because of the modern republican party. it's easy to invoke a few lines that you memorized in high school from a speech, but it's a lot harder to hear the totality of their message. if they dug deeper or read a little more than the cliff notes of his work, they would know that dr. king also said, and i'll quote, it is obvious if a man is entered at the starting
line in a race 300 years after another man, the first would have to perform some impossible feat to catch up with his fellow runner, unquote. what modern day republicans willfully ignore in their revisionist history of king is that when he was alive he was demonized, surveilled, accused of being, wait for it, a communist. sound familiar? what kevin and his fellow republicans might want to consider are a few other words from the reverend's sermons, quote, nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity. >> yes. >> i'm joined by dr. bernice a. king, ceo of the king center and the daughter of dr. martin luther king jr. i'm so excited to have you on, dr. king. >> thank you so much. >> well, i follow you on twitter and i love every time you just lovingly rebuke these people who
really in my mind pervert the meaning of your father's words for their purposes. how does it feel as his daughter hear him revoked in defense of teaching history? >> well, i mean, come on, it is -- it is -- it is insulting. at one point in my life i got really upset until i understood the essence of what my father said in the quote you just mentioned about nothing more dangerous than sincere ignoranc. i feel that i along with my brother and those who represent this legacy have a responsibility to continue to educate people on the truth of my father. you've done an excellent job at everything you just said about the fact that he was devoted to eradicating the triple evils of
poverty, mill tear rimp and racism and while he evoked those words at the end of his speech, i encourage people to read the whole speech. i think there's a danger to reading the last part. he was a preacher. preachers will lay out conditions and circumstances and challenges and at the end they want to leave you with a sense of hope. that was the hope part of his speech. we hope that my children will live in this nation where they will be judged by the color -- the content of character and not the color of their skin but we're not dismissing the fact that there are these conditions that he talked about during the i have a dream speech concerning the black community that have to be addressed. he would never encourage us to ignore the conditions and not to put forth the effort to address them but he would also encourage us to study the whole context of history. >> yes. >> he did that in where do we go from here? he laid out how we got to where we are. and so daddy would never say, excuse the history and let's just start here.
you said it so excellent when he said when you start behind the race. he also said, if a nation has done something against a people for hundreds of years, then it must also turn around and do something for those people. i would suggest although he did not use the words reparations, he was suggesting reparations. now what that looks like practically is a whole nother discussion and so, you know, that's why i always say, do not take excerpts from my father. study him holistically. there is a lot -- he wrote extensively. that's -- that's the beauty of all of this. no matter what people try to say, there are books out and i thank god we just did a new publishing deal so there are going to be more books out and more writings so that the record will continue to be straight and i thank god he was able to write like this because for people to be able to miss appropriate him this way is actually beyond insulting. but, you know, what helps me and
gives me relief is the scripture ye shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free. >> amen. amen. >> so i'm free from the anger and i see my responsibility to say, no, you will not misappropriate my father this way because that is not -- i'm one of those four children and, frankly, i don't like the state and condition of black america right now, not because of anything we did but because of what has been not just been done to us but things that are continuing to be done. i can talk about some things personally just living in the neighborhood that i live in, the red lining that goes on. so -- >> yes. >> yes, exactly. so, no, they don't have a right to do it and they will continue to do it and thank god for you and so many other voices and we continue to speak truth out. >> you know, and people -- it feels like people have sort of muppetized your father. they only know that one line, the color of our skin, content
of our character. he wrote a sermon saying america might go to hell. >> he never got to -- he never got to deliver that sermon. >> amen. >> that was the sermon he was going to deliver the sunday after he was assassinated. >> that's right. he said all of the signs for the rise of fascism are here in our nation. >> okay. prophet. >> she told me that over and over again. i don't know why, but she told me in her latter days and look where we are. >> and look where we are. this is another sound bite of your father. this was july 5th, 1963, talking about another thing we talk about a lot now. the filibuster. take a listen. >> the tragedy is that we have a congress with a senate that has a minority of misguided senators who will use the filibuster to keep the majority of people from
even voting. they wanted the majority senators vote and certainly they wouldn't want the majority people to vote because they know they do not represent the majority of american people. in fact, they representing their own states a very small minority. >> the irony is at that time these were the southern democrats, the dixiecrats that were filibustering stopping civil rights. what do you make of the fact that the republican party has taken that up as their mantle and some democrats are still clinging to the filibuster to not stop them from taking away voting rights? >> you know, i have agonized about this over and over and over again because i know it's a difficult place. in some regards the filibuster can be used appropriately but in other regards, such as now, it's used inappropriately. so i understand the difficulty
in coming to a decision to kind of do that nuclear option and get rid of it -- >> yes. yes. >> -- but we're dealing with something so dire that to me can really break our democracy. >> yeah. >> and, you know, when you get to that place, you may have to take that chance. >> that's right. >> you know, and trust that the universe will be on the side of justice and come around. >> amen. yeah. >> going forward and protect us. >> yeah. >> but it's at that place. but i'm telling you, i have agonized because i understand not getting rid of it. >> absolutely. dr. bernice king, it's such an honor to talk with you. thank you very much. really appreciate all you do for the country. thank you, thank you, thank you. really appreciate you. stunning ahead, revelations about donald trump's final days in office. the bottom line, it was way worse than we ever imagined. michael wolf joins us next.
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a slate of new books on the trump administration are being released this month and each of them paints a devastating picture of the president's last year in office. among them is "landslide" by michael wolff. he was so distracted by his pursuit of the big lie that nobody was running the country during the entire transition period. he writes that by late november trump had given up on any interest or pretense in executive matters. the election challenge had made everything else meaningless. all daily briefings were canceled including national security briefings. all efforts to return to pandemic issues, vaccine rollout or critical intelligence failed. never before had a sitting president so abdicated his proscribed and daily duties. wow, michael wolff, the author
of "landslide, the final days of the trump presidency" joins me. that was stunning. we were without a president from the moment of the presidency on. did he ever re-engage? >> he was solely focused on the election he felt was stolen from him in every possible way. i mean, there was no moment when he turned away from that issue. so anything else that was not involved with that, he was -- he was absent from, uninterested in and in so many ways contemptuous of. >> you also write that he actually tried to delay the election and use covid to do it. can you elaborate on that? >> well, this was at -- during the campaign when things were going badly, obviously covid was keeping him from his beloved
stadium -- stadium mass meetings. he said, well, you know, why don't we just delay the election? people can't vote, they can't get to the ballot -- they can't cast their ballot, let's just delay it. this was on i know two occasions when he said this and on both occasions he was met with horror from the people around him. >> and whose job was it to, i don't know, stuff these ideas in a drawer and just not do them? how did the chief -- how did the staff, the white house staff react to this? did they just pretend they didn't hear him? did he ever follow up and say, why isn't the election delayed? >> essentially that was the skill or the craft of working for donald trump, of being an aide to donald trump is not to carry out what he wanted to do but the exact opposite. not to carry out what he wanted to do. and i think that that was -- you
know, this is largely over the course of four years. >> yeah. >> you know, donald trump just spews whatever comes into his head, that's what he says he wants. and the overwhelming portion of that was stuff that he, a, couldn't do, b, shouldn't do and, c, no one was going to let him do. so, yes, so he was -- in a real way -- he was subverted by his staff. the country was protected by his staff. >> that's anonymous, we now know myles taylor said in his letter as well. i am fascinated by what you said about trump's sickofans. you write that donald trump claimed that chris christie for
giving him covid. he had sat across from him and trump had see the spittle come out of his mouth and tried to duck from the droplets. is there any evidence of that or is there just his general contempt for people who kiss up to him? >> no, it's quite possible that he did give him covid. >>. yeah. yeah. >> i mean, it's also possible that the president gave him covid. >> gave him covid. right. >> but all throughout the -- remember, you know, the white house was as dangerous a place to be as a nursing home. >> absolutely. >> everybody got covid and everybody blamed everybody else for giving them covid. >> the -- another sickofan he treated poorly is bill barr. trump had been personally calling around to various u.s. attorneys in swing state districts to try to get them to open investigations into election fraud. he blamed their resistance and
defiance on barr. if i had won, the president said, barr would have licked the floor if i asked him to. what a phony. i have to be honest with you, this is one of those cases where i actually think donald trump is right. >> absolutely. >> william barr would have licked the floor. >> absolutely. i mean, that was -- that was one of those things and it's kind of a thing -- i think trump felt himself losing power. i mean, he must have felt this -- >> yeah. >> -- as after november 3rd, you know, i mean, the rats were leaving the ship. and he must have felt that. it must have increased his desperation. >> i mean, he even was able to get mcdaniel to drop part of her name. why is it that somebody who seemed in so many ways feeble minded was able to attract still so much sicofantic loyalty and get people to go along with so
much of this garbage? >> well, you know, i think that that might actually not be the case. so there was -- everybody who was around trump in my experience, everybody -- there's -- there's a clear-eyed recognition donald trump is crazy. donald trump has to be managed. donald trump is going to ask us to do things that we cannot do. >> yeah. >> throughout this thing, many of his lawyers, not rudy giuliani which is another story, but many of the white house lawyers said, i'm not going to do this. >> yeah. >> i'm not going to risk my career. i'm not going to go to jail for donald trump. >> too many of them were willing to do that. the book is called "landslide, the final days of the trump presidency." i'm going to pick it up. best of luck with the book. michael wolff. up next, as the white house adds some star power to their
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unlike the former occupant of the white house who couldn't manage to get any a-list stars to support his initiatives, kanye west not counted, olivia rodrigo teemed up with president biden to tell young people the covid vaccine is good for you. she met with president biden and dr. fauci to get their shot, to stay happy and healthy. she recorded videos for her 24 million followers on insta gram and ticktock touting the vaccine as safe and effective.
18-year-old olivia rodrigo out in the country, thank you very much. driver's license is smashing records. it all comes at a critical time as the vaccine numbers are low. the white house messaging stands in stark contrast from republican lawmakers in tennessee who decided you can't tell teenagers anything whatsoever halting all vaccine outreach of any kind. after the state's top vaccination official was fired for sending a memo suggesting teens could get vaccinated without their parents' permission. dr. michelle fiskus spoke with chris hayes last night. >> now has devolved into a moratorium on messaging for any kind of vaccine to children, whether that's infants, children for back to school vaccines or hpv vaccines and even canceling
school-based flu immunization clinics in the fall as a result of the saber-rattling amongst some of our legislators. >> it's no surprise since the people over at fox are trying to get their viewers killed by smearing the vaccine. and a fox newscastoff over at news masks casually spouted some eugenics while knocking vaccines. >> i've always thought about vaccines. i think about just nature and the way everything works and i feel like a vaccination in a weird way is just generally kind of going against nature. if there is some disease out there, maybe there's just an ebb and flow to life where something's supposed to wipe out a certain amount of people and that's kind of the way evolution goes. >> just say no to drugs. oh. no, no, no, all that is wrong. the anti-vaccine idiocy comes as republican lawmakers push to make vaccine deniers a protected
class against discrimination. montana passed a law doing just that with employment. meanwhile, florida republican governor ron desantis who infamously banned businesses from this, started selling antifauci merch. that is the vaccine disinformation is yet again tonight's absolute worst. ♪ (realtor) so, any questions? (wife) we'll take it! (realtor) great. (vo) it will haunt your senses. the heart-pounding audi suv family. get exceptional offers at your local audi dealer. ♪ ♪
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so this happened yesterday on old fox news. >> miracle was not founded on racism. don't get me wrong. slfs slavery going on but slavery was not initially a racist thing. it never was about race initially. to take it like america was founded on racism is a complete lie. >> okay. so here's the problem. history would like to have a word with either that guy or whoever brokered his soul. hope he got a good check. see, the way that the maga right is currently in this country,
setting like going to war over history and antiracism education when they fake call it critical race theory, it's basically a freakout over white americans becoming more woke on matters of race. now you'd think based on that freakout that critical race theorists or authors of wokeness self-help books, but the truth is, if y'all hate talking about race, you're going to want to have a word with your precious founding fathers because as actual critical race theorists will tell you, race is not a biological reality, it's a cultural construct and one that was literally an idea born right here in the good old u.s.a. for most of modern history europeans didn't use anything to describe white other than wealthy women who didn't work in the mines. up until the 17th century when the europeans started using
white to distinguish themselves from the so called savages, the indigenous people they decided to enslave but killed off with germs and those of african dissent who they decided with definition had colored blood were unequal, enslavable, but also their children, their children's children forever to be owned by the slave owner and to be traded and sold around like cattle which is why american slavery was called chattle slavery. that was true even if their children looked like this. they passed a fugitive slave act in 1850 that gave any white person the right to kidnap and reenslave any black person who escaped from bondage and even collect a bounty. they even invented words to say how much colored blood octaroon for 1/8 and quadroon and milado.
race is a white american invention. enter one homer plessy. he was born as a freed color person his descriptor under american law. he was an activist. he was part of a group in new orleans who were determined to overturn the laws that began segregating white and non-white people after union troops pulled out of the south in 1877. no one really knows what he looked like. this mural is a pretty good guest estimate. he descended from the white plantation owners who fled was only 1/8 black. in american terms an octaroon. in short, he looked very much like a white man. at age 30 he volunteered to challenge the louisiana separate car act which had separate cars
for white and colored riders but technically equal accommodations. on a hot day mr. plessy bought a first class ticket in a whites only car in new orleans and he had chosen to be the guy because of how white he looked. a conductor asked him if he was colored. when he said, yes, i am, the conductor ordered him to sit in the colored car. after he refused he was dragged off the train in handcuffs and charged with violating that separate cars act. the citizen groups hired albion wineguard turgey and he filed suit against the judge who originally charged mr. plessy, judge john h. ferguson. the united states court would reach the same decision as plessy versus ferguson which
upheld separate but equal. when rosa parks did the same thing mr. plessy did, who refused to move to the colored section of a public bus in the 1950s. it was the way that the plessy versus ferguson ruling played out that relates to what we're dealing with today. in that infamous ruling the justices found that there was nothing wrong with making mr. plessy and other colored riders use a separate car. quote, we consider the underwriting fallacy of plessy's argument to consist in the assumption that the enforced separation of the two races stamps the colored race with a badge of interiority. if this be so not found by anything in the act but solely because the colored race chooses to put that upon it. it was separate but so what. black people could ride, right? if they felt bad about it, no harm-no foul in america. that's basically the same
argument that justice samuel alito used to justify the american voter movements. sure, having your polling place moved is no big deal and you get stuck standing in lines for seven hours but you can vote, right, eventually, somewhere? you can use that argument literally for everything. like tucker carlson bemoening diversity. if you grew up in america, suddenly nothing looks the same. your neighbors aren't the same. human beings aren't wired for that. or when rand paul defended restaurant discrimination. >> how about desegregating lunch counters. >> what it gets into is that then if you decide that restaurants are publicly owned and not privately owned, does the owner of the restaurant own his restaurant or does the government own his restaurant? these are important
philosophical debates but not very practical discussion. >> frame up choice, am i right? unless you want your customers to wear a mask and die of covid. the maga right wants to take us backwards. it's just an inconvenience and those demanding inequality are the ones who got the problem. that's tonight's "the reid out." "all in with chris hayes" is up next. >> tonight on "all in." >> that sparked some backlash from our legislature called for a dissolution of the state department of health. >> the madness of the republican anti-vax push as new covid cases start to skyrocket among the unvaccinated. then after biden's empassioned plea to defend democracy, how republicans are exploiting the big lie to get trump's endorsement in