No matter how hard the liberals and progressives try, the insidious omission of Woodrow Wilson’s racist policies and outspokenness does not make him a great president. No good in the world could ever right the wrong of racism, especially when coming from a President of the United States. And while Woodrow Wilson did succeed in passing many good laws, such as abolishing child labor, passing anti-trust laws, and creating an 8-hour work day for the railroad workers, it will never erase the fact that Woodrow Wilson was a racist.
Having spent most of his childhood in the southern States, the young Wilson saw up-close the aftermath of the Civil War and its ravages on the white communities. It was probably during this time that he inherited a disliking of the black population and viewed them as inferior.
Despite being a slow learner and not being able to read until age 10, he did eventually attend Princeton where he became president of the school in 1902. It was here that he enacted policies that prevented black students from attending the college, and sadly, these policies remained in place until the early 1940’s. It wasn’t until then that blacks were allowed to attend Princeton (John Howard ’47 and James Ward ’48 were the first blacks to graduate from Princeton).
[Reconstruction government was detested] not because the Republican Party was dreaded but because the dominance of an ignorant and inferior race was justly dreaded. — Woodrow Wilson
While campaigning for the presidency of the United States, Woodrow Wilson did his best to hide his true beliefs on slavery and placated many of the black leaders, eventually winning their support. In 1913, and with the help of the black community, Woodrow Wilson became the second southerner elected to office since James Polk. However, once elected, he quickly turned on the blacks by immediately enacting various racist policies. Wilson banned blacks from the White House, immediately appointed and brought many white southerners into his administration, and supported the segregation of nearly all the federal agencies.
The domestic slaves, at any rate, and almost all who were much under the master’s eye, were happy and well cared for. — Woodrow Wilson
In 1913, he ordered the racial segregation of the Civil Service and banned blacks from using the same restrooms, cafeterias, and office areas. He also removed a majority of the blacks in appointed positions from the previous administration and replaced them with white personnel. These acts made the Federal government and its agencies very hostile towards the black population, and many of the black leaders who supported the progressive ideas, soon revoked their support including the head of the NAACP who wrote the following letter to Wilson (source: Library of Congress).
He also worked on modifying many of the policies of the Reconstruction period because he feared the south may soon be “ruled by an ignorant and inferior race” if the whites were to lose or share power.
In addition to stalling women’s rights, he also blocked the rights of blacks at the Federal level. He openly supported Jim Crow and agreed the States should have the power to enforce their own laws with respect to race issues and black voting. While president, he embraced the idea of the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) and thought of them as the protectors of the southern country. President Wilson went as far as to screen the first feature film named “Birth of a Nation” in the White House. This is significant because the film was blatantly racist and portrayed the Klan as a heroic movement. He then went on to say the following:
The white men were roused by a mere instinct of self preservation … until at last there had sprung into existence a great Ku Klux Klan, a veritable empire of the South, to protect the Southern country. — Woodrow Wilson
After showing support of the film, the Klan encountered a resurgence and quickly spread throughout the land.
Ironically, Wilson did allow blacks to serve in the military and even paid them the same salary as the white soldiers. But when he ordered the white and black units be segregated, he justified it by saying:
Segregation is not a humiliation but a benefit, and ought to be so regarded by you gentlemen. — Woodrow Wilson
The liberals and progressives love to praise Woodrow Wilson for the few good things he did, but refuse to mention the fact he was a racist. Read with caution any articles written about President Wilson which make no mention of his racist policies. They are only telling half the story. Some argue that many of the Founding Father’s, like Thomas Jefferson and the such, owned slaves thus making them a racist too. While that may be the case, they didn’t create new laws while in office that oppressed the black population, like Woodrow Wilson, and in fact tried to abolish slavery. That is a very important distinction that cannot be overlooked.
Woodrow Wilson was president during my grandparent’s generation, which wasn’t all that long ago. And 80 years later, the liberals and progressives have almost succeeded in wiping the racist policies of his presidency from the history books, in much the same way they have done with Planned Parenthood. As a result, it’s amazing to see how many schools are named after Wilson, some of which reside in low income black communities, educating the very people he thought of as inferior. It would be akin to naming a school after Jim Crow. After all, Woodrow Wilson supported him.
Here’s a small subset list of schools named after Woodrow Wilson:
Woodrow Wilson High School (4500 Multnomah St, Los Angeles CA 90032)
Woodrow Wilson Elementary School (133 Tunison Road, New Brunswick, NJ 0890)
Woodrow Wilson High School (3950 Chesapeake Street, NW Washington, DC 20016)
Woodrow Wilson High School (100 South Glasgow Drive, Dallas, TX 75214)
Woodrow Wilson Middle School (1 Wilderman’s Way, Middletown, CT 06457)
Woodrow Wilson High School (1305 9th Avenue South – Fargo, ND 58103)
Woodrow Wilson High School (1306 E. Windsor Drive Denton, TX 76209)
Woodrow Wilson Middle School (1005 Swann Avenue Tampa, FL. 33606)
Woodrow Wilson Elementary School (1750 Spyglass Drive – Corona, CA 92883)
Many, many more … just Google it.