Eric Cada Eric Nivo, Stevens, Eric Fellner discussed on Scene On Radio
If that had happened? I mean what it would have required to do that. Would've would've been actually transformative. And that's what black people were saying at the time. Very clearly right. They said it to Sherman and they were saying to the radical Republicans we need land to make a decent life to support ourselves to be independent and on top of that are labor has built the economy of the South and actually the whole country. So don't let's not talk about fairness right. We've more than earned that and if we want to proceed on any kind of ethical grounds the we have to use our imagination to make this happen and Stevens agreed. He wanted to do it but the proposal really didn't get much widespread support even in his party. The Republican Party let alone from the southern Democrats or people like the president. Andrew Johnson and the proposal died. In fact. Here let's play a clip from my interview with Eric Fellner. The reconstruction historian. Here's what he said about that. Even as radical as reconstruction was the idea of confiscating the property of one class of people and distributing it to another was more than most northern Republicans were willing to do they believe in the sanctity of private property. What one might say about reconstruction in this regard? Is that The political revolution was radical. Really radical the economic revolution did not go nearly as far. Yeah and listen to that language. Right I mean. They believed in the sanctity of private property. Best the language power private properties would reign supreme. No matter what kind of crimes against humanity. What kind of violence and exploitation went into acquiring that property right it just seems like a very consistent theme in the history of America. Who seems like what we're learning is that if economic power is distributed in a profoundly unequal way which has been true throughout most of us history then government will not serve the interests of everybody equally or even close to equally. Unless maybe unless. There's some urgent need In a given moment to protect the interests and the rights of poor and working people say in a major crisis of some kind for example. I don't know a great depression something like that. I'm glad you brought up the Great Depression right. Because looking at how people organized for economic democracy before and through the Great Depression is really important. Because it's always been. The job of people were fighting for justice to create that kind of urgency. Next time. Guess what the new deal. It was a big deal but just how big and how new was it. Our editor on the series is Loretta Williams Music Consulting and production help by Joe Augustine of narrative music. Our theme song is the underside of power by Algiers. Jeers other music by John. Eric Cada Eric Nivo and Lucas Beland voiceovers. This time by Michael Bats second and Scott Bueller follow us on facebook and on twitter at seen on radio gender. I is at catch tweet down. Thanks to North Carolina Public Radio W. UNC seen on radio is distributed by PR axe. The show comes to you from the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University.