by Jim McCarthy
Who is the “who” does the replacement? Who is the “us” to replace? There is no discernible record that Native Americans asked themselves this question. In the early 1600s, the Powhattan people of Virginia observed English immigrants building a fort and expanding their settlement on former Powhattan hunting grounds. In 1622 the natives attacked as a measure, according to some historians, to teach the English a lesson.
From the circumstances, the indigenous peoples were clear that the newcomers were not of their tribe or shared their sensibilities; they were pale-skinned others bent on clearing and dominating the woodlands for farming unhindered by those before them. The existential evidence was reasonably graphic to conclude that the Powhattans were being replaced, their properties being converted regardless of their interests.
Although the final guiding document drafted by colonialist immigrants appeared to grant Native Americans the high diplomatic privilege of reserving explicit power to Congress to regulate trade and negotiate treaties with them, the document also excluded untaxed natives from the census. . Ironically, this Constitution contained a provision restricting the taking of property without due process or just compensation. In 1800, Congress passed an Act for the Preservation of Peace with the Natives limiting First Amendment speech and freedom of the press as a means of outlawing criticism of national policies and discouraging foreign nations from inciting them to protest. .
While immigrant colonialists engaged in a self-proclaimed revolution against the tyranny of England, vigorous uprisings by slaves and indentured people were generally referred to as rebellions, a somewhat nefarious designation for protest. During the 1830s, the national government arranged the forced removal of half a dozen Native American tribes from their homelands in several states on a journey called the Trail of Tears. In 1845, the tidal wave of immigrants needed a sharper and more forceful description to match its purpose, resulting in a new public policy known as Manifest Destiny. Population replacement had become an overt national policy.
Until the Civil War era, states and the nation were engaged in nascent and disparate efforts to restrict immigration while actively continuing to encircle and acculturate Indigenous peoples. But the war between the states unleashed another threat to the dominant culture, a newly liberated population. In 1901, Virginia’s political leaders decided on a new constitution, replete with voting restrictions to fortify against overthrow. Carter Glass, later a United States senator from the Commonwealth, said the new guiding document was intended to “eliminate every black voter who can be legally disposed of without materially harming the numerical strength of the white electorate.”
Glass’ express sentiment permeated and prevailed in Virginia for many decades. In 1924, the state Legislature enacted the Racial Integrity Act to prohibit interracial marriage while defining the portion of blood necessary to be white, i.e. “no trace of blood other than Caucasian “. That same year, the Commonwealth tied its racial public policies to the pseudo-science of eugenics by passing the Virginia Sterilization Act as an improvement for the human race, eliminating hereditary disorders through selective breeding and social engineering. The Public Assembly Act of 1927 required racial separation in all areas of public assembly, thereby seeking to prevent the transfer of cultural or social traits between races. Subsequent legislative action in 1930 defined anyone with even a trace of African ancestry as black (often referred to as the “one-drop rule”).
Leading citizens of Virginia had formed branches of the Anglo-Saxon Club of America in the early 1920s, encouraging the legislature to pass the various restrictive racial laws. Thirty-one Commonwealth chapters, including one for students at the University of Virginia, were dedicated to ending race fusion. These principles found sympathy in the 1950s following the demise of “separate but equal” (Brown v Board of Education) and the emergence of another political policy called mass resistance to prevent replacement in the public school system.
In 2017, in Charlottesville, the answer was “The Jews will not replace us”. Defending against replacement by others is suggested by the 100 Virginia jurisdictions that have declared themselves Second Amendment sanctuaries, constitutionally armed against invaders or intruders. Code terms to identify people suspected of advocating replacement are widely used. It’s waking up. The lefties. Democrats. progressive. The Jews. When Catholics feared being substitutes in the 1850s, the American Party (aka Know Nothings) sought secrecy. Recently, a congressman from Georgia said that the Catholic Church was under the control of Satan, reviving the previous theme.
The contemporary political equation for “who will replace us” can be translated simply as leftists (who are evil) seek to replace the old majority (white males) or real Americans with outsiders (primarily non-white immigrants) from the across the southern border and foreign nations. This message has received direct amplification and accreditation from political figures as well as from the media. An Arizona state senator tweeted last July: “We Americans who love this country are being replaced by people who don’t love this country…[O]Our enemies are using mass immigration, education, big tech, big business and other strategies to achieve this.
Unfortunately, the trajectory and intensity of this replacement theory has been dramatically propelled by other candidates and office holders, including a prominent New York congressman fueled and driven by Tucker Carlson’s Fox News bullhorn. The New York politician’s Facebook ads warned that “radical Democrats are planning their most aggressive action yet; a PERMANENT ELECTORAL INSURRECTION. Their plan to grant amnesty to 11 MILLION illegal immigrants will overthrow our current electorate and create a permanent liberal majority in Washington. “Their plan”; “our current electorate”.
Last year, Mr Carlson grimly asserted: “I know the left and all the little Twitter gatekeepers literally go hysterical if you use the term ‘replacement’, if you suggest that the Democratic Party is trying to replace the electorate current, voters are voting now, with new, more obedient people, Third World voters. But they get hysterical because that’s what’s really happening. No ifs, ands, or buts; simple fact.
In 2015, Dylan Roof, then 21, killed 9 people at a black church in South Carolina. During the investigation of his past, a website (lastrhodesian.com) was discovered displaying his ramblings about threats from colored strangers. In 2018, a mass shooter at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh posted an online message against a Jewish organization that “likes to bring invaders who kill our people.” An April 2019 shooting at a California synagogue echoed a complaint that Jews voted for and funded “politicians and organizations that use mass immigration to displace the European race.” El Paso, Texas in August 2019 saw the deaths of 23 people by a gunman who offered, “This attack is a response to the Hispanic invasion of Texas.”
Ten New Yorkers in Buffalo were shot by an 18-year-old dressed in military gear using an automatic weapon bearing a racial epithet. His action was accompanied by a lengthy online manifesto repeating popular conspiracy theories about the replacement dangers facing white people. Authorities said the shooter chose the neighborhood supermarket because its black population had the highest dentistry in the state.
The rhetoric of the end of the world (as some experience it) is not, according to the analysis, the cause of violent behavior, but it offers a comfort, a kind of absolution to engage in an action to prevent replacement. The answer to the title question is: “You must be replaced by Them.” The stories of Virginia and America indicate that there is no shortage of “Them”. We must ask ourselves what we fear to be lost or taken by Them. Which of us, at what time, did not belong to some extent to the target class called Them?
Jim McCarthy is a retired New York City attorney living in Virginia.