Civil Rights Activist: If You Vote for Biden, ‘You Don’t Know History’

By Melanie Arter | August 27, 2020 | 11:01am EDT
Civil Rights Activist Clarence Henderson (Screenshot)
Civil Rights Activist Clarence Henderson (Screenshot)

( - The Republican Party abolished slavery, gave black men citizenship, and gave black men the right to vote, civil rights activist Clarence Henderson said Wednesday at the Republican National Convention.

Henderson, a military veteran, said he’s a Republican who supports President Donald Trump, and “if that sounds strange, you don’t know your history.”

“It was the Republican Party that passed the 13th Amendment abolishing slavery; it was the Republican Party that passed the 14th Amendment giving black men citizenship; and it was the Republican Party that passed the 15th Amendment giving Black men the right to vote,” he said.

Henderson said the media is trying to convince African-Americans “to conform to the same old Democratic talking points.”

“You know what that’ll get you? The same old results,” he said.

Henderson pushed back on former Vice President Joe Biden’s comment that “if you have a problem figuring out whether you’re for me or Trump, you ain’t black.”

“Joe Biden had the audacity to say if you don’t vote for him ‘you ain’t black.’ Well to that, I say, if you do vote for Biden, you don’t know history!” he said.

The civil rights movement changed the course of history, Henderson said.

Sixty years ago, segregation was legal and enforced. The simple act of sitting at a lunch counter could lead to physical harm, jail time, or worse. I know from personal experience. Walking into the Woolworth Department Store on February 2, 1960, I knew it was unlike any day I’d experienced before. 

My friends had been denied service the day before because of the color of their skin. We knew it wasn’t right, but when we went back the next day I didn’t know whether I was going to come out in a vertical or prone position . . . in handcuffs or on a stretcher -- or even in a body bag.

By sitting down to order a cup of coffee, we challenged injustice. We knew it was necessary, but we didn’t know what would happen. We faced down the KKK. We were cursed at and called all kinds of names. They threatened to kill us, and some of us were arrested, but it was worth it. 


Henderson praised Trump for providing “record funding” to historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), creating jobs for the black community, investing in black neighborhoods, and restoring the lives of black inmates through criminal justice reform.

“Donald Trump is not a politician. He is a leader. Politicians are a dime-a-dozen. Leaders are priceless. The record funding Trump gave HBCUs is priceless too. So are the record number of jobs he created for the black community--and the investment he drove into our neighborhoods with tax incentives in Opportunity Zones, and so are the lives he restored by passing criminal justice reform where 91% of the inmates released are black!” he said.

“These achievements demonstrate that Donald Trump truly cares about black lives. His policies show his heart. He has done more for black Americans in four years than Joe Biden has done in 50,” Henderson said.

“Donald Trump is offering real and lasting change, an unprecedented opportunity to rise, a country that embraces the spirit of the civil rights movement of the ‘60s, a place where people are judged by the content of their character, their talents and abilities, not by the color of their skin. This is the America I was fighting for 60 years ago,” he said.

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