John Fund devotes his OpinionJournal column today to “the worst bill you’ve never heard of” (as Paul noted here). The bill would create a race-based government for Native Hawaiians, creating something like the tribal system that has done so much for American Indians. Fund notes: “Just 5,000 or so–less than 0.5% of the state’s population–are of pure native blood. Over 90% of self-described natives are more than half some other ethnicity.” Like all fans of race based programs, the old slave code’s “one drop of blood” rule is an important element of the program.
Fund doesn’t directly address the question why this revolting bill has the support of Hawaii Governor Lingle, Minnesota Senator Norm Coleman (click here), or President Bush. Pure political pandering probably suffices to explain the case of Governor Lingle, but I can’t imagine why any other Republican politician would want to cater to the grievance industry in a way that so fundamentally conflicts with the basic principles of the Republican Party.
In his 1855 letter to his old friend Joshua Speed, Lincoln wrote:
Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that “all men are created equal.” We now practically read it “all men are created equal, except negroes.” When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read “all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics.” When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty — to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy [sic].
I leave it to you to draw the connection between the benighted forces against which Lincoln was contending and their intellectual inheritors described in Fund’s column: “Aloha, apartheid.”