The NAACP has passed a resolution condemning racism in the Tea Party movement.
The resolution was approved in a vote by more than 2,000 delegates at the annual convention of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People in Kansas City.
Versions of the resolution condemned “explicitly racist behavior” in the Tea Party movement and called on people to “repudiate” what it described as racist elements of the Tea Party. The final text of the resolution has not yet been made available, however, and that language may have changed.
As the Associated Press notes, NAACP President Ben Jealous has said the Tea Party movement needs to “be responsible members of this democracy and make sure they don’t tolerate bigots or bigotry among their members.”
Members of the Tea Party movement vehemently deny that their movement is racist.
A CBS News poll in April found 52 percent of Tea Party members believe too much has been made of the problems facing black people. Far fewer Americans overall — 28 percent — believe as much. Among non-Tea Party whites, the percentage who say too much attention has been paid to the problems of black people is 23 percent.
The original NAACP resolution, submitted by the group’s Kansas City branch, said the Tea Party movement has “displayed signs and posters intended to degrade people of color generally and President Barack Obama specifically.”
It condemned “racist elements” of the movement as “a threat to progress” and referenced instances in which black congressmen said they were verbally and physically abused by Tea Party activists.