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SEATTLE - Wayne Perryman filed a significant reparations lawsuit in 2004, one addressing critical aspects of Black history in America. He chose to go up against the Democratic National Party (DNP) but not many have heard anything about it, nor have many Black leaders come aboard to voice support. The suit was dismissed two times before he refiled late last year but now the case is pending further action in the U.S. Court of Appeals, 9th circuit, docket #0535890.

Perryman, an associate pastor of Mt. Calvary Christian COGIC, did not file the suit asking for millions of dollars, his only requests were that the DNP issue a national apology for its past racist policies and practices toward Blacks, and that they fund production of a series of documentaries which would record and preserve the tainted legacy of the party with free distribution to all public and private schools in the country.

He outlined a number of Democratic transgressions in his book, "Unfounded Loyalty: An In-depth Look Into the Love Affair Between Blacks and the Democrats." In it, and in his lawsuit, he details events which occurred from 1792 through 2002 which show the pattern of bias and racism that came from the political party.

"I [identified] all the things the Democratic party specifically and deliberately did to Blacks, so it's not a case frozen in history. It comes all the way up through Jim Crow, the 1960s and the fact that up to 2002, the party never elected a Black man as senator," he said. However, he noted that a Black woman senator was elected a few years prior to that date and the first Black male senator a few years after.

One of the proofs he cites in his case is that Republicans, in 1866, introduced a senate bill for reparations but Democratic President Andrew Johnson vetoed it. "We would have had reparations if it weren't for the Democrats," Perryman said. He also asserts that it was in Democratic controlled states where Blacks were doused in kerosene, set on fire and lynched, many times while their homes were simultaneously being burned to the ground. All the while, Democratic mayors, judges and other elected officials joined in and cheered the activities along or looked the other way.

The activist admitted that he broke down crying many times during his research which also revealed that it was those same states which pushed for fugitive slave laws; passed "black codes," and jim crow and miscegenation laws at the state level. He also noted that in the 1860s, the Democratic, national, presidential campaign slogan touted that it was the party of "white supremacy."

"You never found anywhere or [in] any public record where the Democratic party ever apologized," the former Democrat said, adding that he believes last year's Resolution 39, the government's official apology for lynching, was inspired by his lawsuit as it was introduced by a Democratic, southern senator on the same day the DNP was to have responded to his lawsuit in federal court. The author views that effort as one aimed at circumventing his case, however, the irony, he said, was in the fact that it was Republicans who congressional records show were introducing anti-lynching laws in the 1870s, laws that were never passed or supported by Democrats.

Perryman, now an Independent, wants the true history of the Democratic party to become widely known - whether he wins or loses his legal case. He also desires to see Blacks become more knowledgeable of the political process and that they need representation in both parties along with bipartisan coalitions to affect real change on their issues of concern.

He stated that the DNP has hired a large, corporate law firm for their defense while he represents himself, pro se, and he also lamented that the National Bar Association, even though aware of the case, has refused to offer assistance through their network of thousands of Black judges and attorneys.

"I'm out here fighting by myself but David fought Goliath and the Lord helped him," he said optimistically. "I'm just praying God will help me prevail."

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I had not heard about this case.

I think it is good that a direct challenge is in place against the DNP. It may force some degree of open discussion of the party's relationship with African Americans as a people.

In this time of 'The Covenant', it is fitting that such an open discussion be forced into our daily converstation.

I hope he can find support.


Jim Chester
thanks james. i don't know how much support he'll find because it seems a number of people really just don't want to deal with the issue. nor does it seem they even want to consider that they are not limited to only 2 options - democrat or republican. what ever happened to all that talk of building a strong, 3rd political force? i'm baffled at how some can be satisfied to limiting themselves to a choice between the devil or satan - where's the choice for god in all of this?

Should Blacks Separate from the Democratic Party?
Posted 03-09-06

(A follow up to One Man Battling the Democratic Party)

An inexplicable devotion and bond exist between many Blacks in America and the Democratic party. Whole families, consisting of generations of members who are Democrats and proudly cast their votes only along party lines, seemingly view the political party as a savior deserving of their unconditional love. This love is oddly given to an alliance which at one time was known as the "White man's party," a fact that is unknown or little cared for today. Adding to the irony, the opposing Republican party - which many Democrats believe can do little of value - was founded in the 1800s by individuals who were against the expansion of chattel slavery - the inhumane institution that destroyed the lives of an undeterminable number of Black men, women and children for nearly four centuries.

The Democratic party's racist past coupled with the appeal it currently has amongst Blacks are two of the reasons author and lecturer Wayne Perryman was inspired to write "Unfounded Loyalty: An In-Depth Look into the Love Affair Between Blacks and Democrats." The Christian minister also filed a little heard about lawsuit against The Democratic National Party (DNP) which has been overlooked by U.S. mainstream media outlets in spite of the fact that the case was deemed credible enough to be heard in the federal Court of Appeals, 9th Circuit, where it is pending further action under docket number 0535890.

At one time, the Republican party was greatly supported by American Blacks, from the Civil War era until the 1930s when Democratic president, Franklin D. Roosevelt presented his New Deal policies which helped ease the country out of the Great Depression. The resulting anti-discrimination programs led many Blacks to abandon the Republican party and become Democrats. No doubt they were also swayed by Roosevelt's wife, Eleanor, who was an advocate of equal rights and fair treatment for the country's darker skinned residents.

Generations later, Blacks remain loyal to the party in spite of the fact that they have received little in return for their puzzling allegiance. Gallup pollings show that more than 60% of registered Black voters identify themselves as Democrats even though dissatisfaction with the party is at an all time high.

Detailed legal brief

The near-100 page brief outlining Perryman's suit references a variety of sources which show that an apparent anti-Black agenda was sanctioned by the Democratic party, particularly in the American South when slavery was an accepted practice.

Under the section titled "1866 - The Birth of the Ku Klux Klan (KKK)," the brief reads, "After the Civil War, when Republicans passed various laws and developed a number of social programs (such as the Freedmen's Bureau) to assist blacks, the Democrats became very angry and resentful. From their deep seeded anger several terrorist organizations were born and in their efforts to gain the upper hand, the Democrats became the "daddy" of the [KKK]." A reference is then given to an entry in The Encyclopedia Britannica which verifies that Democratic resentment led not only to formation of the KKK, but also other "secret terroristic organizations" like the Knights of the White Camelia.

The brief then proceeds to reference "From Slavery to Freedom," a book authored by respected Black scholars John Hope Franklin and Alfred Moss. "The Camelia and the Klan were the most powerful of the secret orders. Armed with guns, swords, or other weapons, their members patrolled parts of the South day and night. They used intimidation, force, ostracism in business and society, bribery at the polls, arson and even murder to accomplish their deed. Depriving the Negro of political equality became a holy crusade....."

Later, Perryman's legal document parallels the terrorist acts of the Democratic Party against Blacks in the South to those utilized by the Nazi Party against Jews in Germany. Similarities were cited in a number of areas, including: racist legislation; forced labor; forbidding intermarriage; synagogues/churches destroyed; torture, and denial of citizenship. In spite of the disturbing parallels, there was one area that was not equal and which was a key request of the suit.

"Eventually the Jews did receive an apology," the brief continues. "However the records will show that the Democratic Party has never issued [one] for the atrocities they committed against Blacks."

Democrats fail to respond

Perryman, speaking in a phone interview from his Seattle, Washington office, explained that, in 2004, he sent correspondence to the DNP about his research and his book, requesting they issue a national apology for the past racist policies and practices of the party, with that apology to be announced later that year during the nationally televised Democratic convention. The DNP never responded and after deeper thought on how he could bring the issue to light, Perryman filed the lawsuit. Originally, the court was asked to award seven demands, including some requesting the DNP pay monetary damages to Blacks over the age of 25, in staggered amounts based on their age. Later, after his case was dismissed, he revised some of the language in regard to what, in legal terms, is called "standing."

"[Standing] means, do you really have the authority to bring the case - are you a legitimate victim," Perryman said, adding that big name lawyers like the late Johnnie Cochran lost reparations cases because they were not able to show how victimization continued to current times.

The activist maintains his revised suit now clearly identifies how traces and effects of Democratic racist legislation and acts still existed in America up to 2002 and, in subtler forms, continues today. In addition to refining the language of his brief, he also scaled down his demands in that he is only seeking a court ordered DNP apology, but with certain conditions.

"As part of that [apology], we want finances to produce a film that depicts the true historical relationship between Blacks and Democrats, and this film distributed to public and private schools throughout America free of charge." The former Democrat is also requesting recovery of his legal expenses.

Now claiming to be a political Independent, he gives assurance that he is not encouraging a mass exodus from the Democratic party to the Republican, he only desires that voters become more knowledgeable of the true history of the party that "supposedly represents the Black viewpoint. "

Role of Congressional Black Caucus

His efforts are also aimed at dispelling other myths relating to the political process, one being that the Congressional Black Caucus [CBC] is in place to handle Black affairs. In his estimation, that is not the case given the duties those elected officials have to carry out on behalf of their constituents _ not all of whom are Black.

"The CBC is not a group of Black people in Washington, D.C. waiting for a Black issue to come across their desk," Perryman declared. "They have [thousands] of confirmations to vote on and 5000 new laws [to review] every Congressional session. They have daily responsibilities to run the country, just like the White Congresspersons."

This was seemingly confirmed by CBC spokesperson Paul Braithwaite who said he knew nothing of Perryman's lawsuit, nor could he say whether the 43 Democratic CBC members were aware of it. Even if they were, he said that, as government employees, there were restrictions in place that prohibited them from involvement in these kinds of legal cases. He added that several members were familiar with the reparations issue and were using legislative means to address it, specifically by supporting HR 40 - the reparations bill introduced in 1989 by Congressman John Conyers. The bill primarily calls for the forming of a government commission to study how slavery and the following decades of discrimination have affected Blacks living today. Although the bill has gained support annually, 17 years after its introduction it still has not been passed into law.

Earlier this year, Perryman sent correspondence to Conyers and a number of other elected officials and also to the national offices of Black organizations like the CBC, National Bar Association, NAACP, and the Urban League. In the letter, he outlined the reasons for his lawsuit and the importance of DNP leaders acknowledging the party's history and apologizing for it. He has yet to receive any responses and declares that few Blacks are helping him, although he has received encouragement from international reparations groups as far away as Haiti, England and South America.

Determined to continue the fight

He is also greatly inspired by his two teenage sons who often urge him to keep fighting when he feels like giving up. Continuing the fight is what he intends to do as he hopes the eyes of many will be opened causing them to become more intelligent voters.

"I just want Black people to understand that they do not have strong allies in either party. I do not want them kissing the behinds of people who have murdered, terrorized and harmed us."

The DNP has little to say based on many unreturned phone calls to Mark Paustenbach, one of the group's media spokespersons. In an initial conversation, he was seemingly unaware of the lawsuit and has since failed to return phone calls to give an official response.

Perryman is not surprised, and views the DNP's silence as another sign that the group wants as little attention drawn to the case as possible, and he also finds it significant that the party did not challenge any of the items in, or the merits of, his legal brief. He maintains that until they issue an apology for past wrongs, Blacks should resist giving blind loyalty to the Democrats and begin demanding accountability.

Perryman also notes that a number of American voters, of all backgrounds, are becoming Independents and are challenging both major parties to show and prove before giving up their votes. He would like to see more Blacks begin to utilize this strategy.

- Adeeba Folami -
Today many white Democrats are opposed to paying African Americans trillions of dollars in Reparation Pay, money that should be paid by the Democratic Party...---Perryman

I hope the rationale for reparations does not get directed to the Democrat Party.

The Democrat Party was key to the institutionalization of chattel slavery. There is no doubt.

The Democrat Party has 'ability to pay' in a manner that can benefit us as a people, AND has no legally binding, contractual, relationship that can be quantified in our capitalist system.

Reparations must be about the money.


Jim Chester

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