Tennessee State Rep. John DeBerry, a black Shelby County Democrat, is an independent thinker, which at the moment makes him Public Enemy No. 1 in the eyes of the state’s Democratic Party.
(Video of Rep. John DeBerry with Rep. Mike Sparks discussing the “Abortion as black genocide” by Planned Parenthood)
Earlier this month, with most Americans distracted by the media’s nonstop coronavirus coverage, Janeita Lentz, another Shelby County Democrat and co-chair of the Memphis-Mid South Democratic Socialists of America, advanced a racist, cultist agenda. Her mission: to oust a black Democratic incumbent deemed too uppity for the Tennessee Democratic Party (TNDP) and its white overseers.
Lentz, on April 6, submitted a resolution to TNDP Chair Mary Mancini and Shelby County Chair Michael Harris requesting the removal of DeBerry, a 13-term house member, from the 2020 election ballot. Rep. DeBerry, who has represented a 65 percent black Memphis district for 26 years, is also a Church of Christ minister who is pro-life and pro-school choice. That makes him anathema for today’s Democratic Party. An outspoken but gentle black man, he is a threat to the Democrats’ long tradition of exploiting blacks to advance their progressive agenda.
On April 8, the majority white TNDP executive committee voted 41-18, with two abstentions, to remove DeBerry from the ballot. Rutherford County’s Brandon Thomas, a black member of the executive committee and a candidate in the August 2020 Democratic primary for House District 49, is the only black known to have supported DeBerry’s removal from the ballot.
Rutherford County’s Brandon Thomas, a black member of the executive committee and a candidate in the August 2020 Democratic primary for House District 49, is the only black known to have supported DeBerry’s removal from the ballot.
To bolster her case against DeBerry, Lentz provided 28 pages of evidence. Included were a disbursement from DeBerry’s campaign account to Republican State Rep. Bill Sanderson; a Tweet from Education Secretary Betsy DeVos thanking Rep. DeBerry for participating in an education reform roundtable; Rep. DeBerry’s vote in favor of the fetal heartbeat bill, which was met by billboards purchased by Planned Parenthood; his being the only Democrat endorsed by the National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB); and a picture of the Tennessee Republican Prayer Caucus on January 17, 2020 – with the comment “John J. DeBerry, Jr. the only Democrat invited and in attendance.” “Only Democrat invited” is a false statement because all Tennessee legislators are invited, and many Democrats attend. Then again, prayer is offensive to the edicts of the Church of Liberalism as espoused and embraced by Democrats nationwide.
Rep. DeBerry was never told of the challenge to his credentials or that the TNDP executive committee was meeting April 8. Several black Democrats wrote letters to Mancini on behalf of DeBerry. Among those was Rep. Joe Towns, Jr., whose sharply-worded letter emphasized that “the overwhelming majority of the African-American community has vetted John [and found] him more than sufficient in Democratic values that reflect his district and the black community at large.”
TNDP Chair Mancini has accused DeBerry of opposing women’s health. The latter should be interpreted as abortion. Democrats use euphemisms such as “reproductive health” and “women’s health” to camouflage their devotion to pro-abortion views and make them more palatable to those who oppose killing the unborn. One look at his voting record and population data demonstrates that DeBerry is standing up for the most vulnerable Americans.
Across the nation, Democrats are seeking to purge their party of pro-life Democrats such as DeBerry.
Dr. Carol M. Swain is a former tenured professor at Vanderbilt and Princeton universities. Her Be The People News blog and podcast empower individuals to think independently, understand their responsibilities, and make a difference in the world.