Tuesday, 21 October 2008

John McCain


The spots on a leopard never change


The descendants of slaves who were owned by ancestors of John McCain say they will vote for Barack Obama.

Lillie McCain, 56, a psychology professor, traces her lineage from two of more than 120 black slaves held before the end of the Civil War at, the Mississippi plantation owned by the white McCains.

Explaining why she is not voting for McCain now, Lillie said: "Since we can't undo what has been done, the most effective thing is to figure out how to put things in perspective and go from there.

"To harbour anger and hostility is counterproductive. Obama has shown that throughout his campaign. All my family support Barack Obama for president despite the good relations we have with the McCains."

The senator's great-great-grandfather William Alexander McCain bought the plantation in 1851.

Lillie is descended from slaves there named Isom and Lettie.

After the 1861-1865 Civil War, they retained close ties with the white family, adopting their surname and living nearby on land rented from their former owners. Lettie McCain's headstone is in a graveyard on the plantation.

A cousin of the senator owns 1,500 acres of the original 2,000.

McCain's younger brother Joe and other white McCains have attended reunions organised by the African-American McCains.

Lillie said: "I remember the Klu Klux Klan burning down our church when I was a kid."

Senator McCain has called abuses of African-Americans "a dark and tragic chapter in American history" and said "cultivating the bond between the two families is important".

1 comment:

Pom said...

Just found your site for the first time.

This is a story that received no attention in the states. I doubt it would have had a great deal of impact - at least no more impact than Cheney and Obama being related.

Enjoyed reading - thanks for the wonderful commentary.

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