We Are All Americans.

It cracks me up to see all the “firsts” in Washington whenever there is a change of administrations.

President Biden, heading the Dimmicrats, has to show the Raypooblicans and the Swamp Critters that his group of advisors, the cabinet, are all different colors and shapes and genders.

Let’s just hope they are good advisors.

I’m especially enthralled with Deb Haaland, who is the President’s Secretary of the Interior, and the first (there it is!!) Native American to hold that position.  If one didn’t know better, one might think that no Native American has held high office before 2020.

Not true.

Charles Curtis, of Kansas, was vice president under Herbert Hoover in 1929-33.  A heart beat away, as they say.  He was a Raypooblican and therefore the Big-Name Press yahoos don’t say much about him.  However, I think VP outranks Secretaries of the Interior.

To the extent the Main Stream Media flaunt Kamala Harris as the first female Vice President of color, well I think Charlie Curtis gets that “first,” at least the color part.  He never claimed to be female.

Part of the reason Haaland was appointed Sec.Int. was that the Department of the Interior supervises the Bureau of Indian Affairs.  But other Native Americans have been chief of the BIA.

Take Ely Parker.  He was a Tonawanda Seneca tribe member.  In 1865, he was 37 and trained as a civil engineer.  Highly unusual.  During the civil war he wanted to join the Union army but was prohibited because he was not a citizen.

The civil war was a white man’s war, Parker was told.

Which is untrue.  Much of the Cherokee Nation in Oklahoma was armed by the Confederacy in hopes of getting their own nation in the bargain.  And over 180,000 blacks served in the Union army.  Many were former slaves and freedmen.  Neither the blacks nor the Cherokee were considered citizens.

Parker prevailed on his friend, U. S. Grant, to get him into the army.  Grant obliged, and Lt. Ely Parker served on Grant’s staff.  At Appomattox, it was Lt. Colonel Ely Parker who drafted the final set of surrender terms that Robert E. Lee signed.

Grant introduced Lee to Parker.  Lee supposedly replied, “I’m glad to see one real American here.”

Parker, God Bless him, at the absolute low point in our history, replied to Lee, “We are all Americans.”

That was the finest short political speeches in our history.

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Dean Halliday Smith

Dean Halliday Smith

Dean Halliday Smith is a fifth generation Kansan, a Vietnam vet, a lawyer, and grandfather several times over. His interests are Bleeding Kansas territorial days, the civil war, and post-war western novels.

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