I wonder why this particular incident in history never makes into the public education curriculum:
In the House of Representatives, Washington, D.C., Galusha Grow (Republican) of Pennsylvania uttered a few antislavery remarks, then wandered over to the Democratic side of the aisle to talk to a colleague. From there he responded to still another member's remarks, even though he was not at his seat...or even amoung his fellow Republicans.
None of this was lost upon South Carolina's Democratic representative, Laurence M. Keitt, who told the Pennsylvanian to "go back to your own side of the hall."
Grow replied: "This is a free hall and every man has a right to be where he pleases. I will object when and where I please."
Whereupon Keitt said, "Sir, I will let you know that you are a black Republican puppy."
Grow then said the hall belonged to the American people, he could stay where he pleased, "and no slave driver shall crack his whip over my head."
Seconds later, the fists flew in the House chamber. Keitt went down, knocked out cold by Grow's punch to the jaw. But the fight didn't end there...or with them.
It wasn't as shocking at the time, in 1856, that South Carolina's representative, Preston Smith Brooks (Democrat), strode into the Senate chamber and broke his gutta-percha cane beating on stridently abolitionist Senator Charles Sumner (Republican) of Massachusetts, but it was a bona fide fight on the House floor all right. Others immediately plunged into the melee. It is said that knives and even pistols were in evidence. Someone hurled a large spittoon, and Representative William Barksdale of Mississippi lost his wig to a Wisconsin member. When Barksdale got it back, he put it on backward. The levity that resulted helped restore order to the House.
In 1863, Barksdale was killed at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. In 1864, Keitt was killed at Cold Harbor, Virginia.
It amazes me to no end that the Democrat-ic party continues to own the black vote. Perhaps it is because the public schools of today fail to teach proper history. They don't dwell on events such as the one above. They never bring up the Democrat-ic party's opposition to the Civil Rights Act, and Democrat, Robert Byrd's filibuster of same. They never comment on how Al Gore's father joined Byrd in the endeavor.
Perhaps it is because the Republican party doesn't do good PR.