Herman Cain on Civil Rights

Republican Businessman & Talk-Show Host; 2011 GOP frontrunner


Don't distract army by reinstituting Don't-Ask-Don't-Tell

Q: Now gays are allowed to serve openly in the military; would you leave that policy in place or would you try to change it back to "don't ask/don't tell"?

CAIN: If I had my druthers, I never would have overturned "don't ask/don't tell" in the first place. Now that they have changed it, I wouldn't create a distraction trying to turn it over as president. Our men and women have too many other things to be concerned about rather than have to deal with that as a distraction.

Source: 2011 GOP primary debate in Manchester NH , Jun 13, 2011

Ignoring DOMA is treasonous breach of presidential duty

Q: You said that the administration's decision not to defend the Defense of Marriage Act was "a breach of presidential duty bordering on treason." Pretty strong language; isn't this country moving toward acceptance of gay marriage?

A: The Defense of Marriage Act is the law of the land, signed in 1996 by Pres. Bill Clinton. In his oath of office the president says he is supposed to protect and uphold the laws of the USA. To me that is asking the Justice Department to not uphold the law

Source: 2011 GOP primary debate in South Carolina , May 5, 2011

Denied college admission due to race; but never lost faith

In Cain's telling, he was denied admission to the University of Georgia based on his race, even though he ranked second in his high school class. Rather than show righteous anger and indignation at how his basic life chances were threatened by the illogic of white supremacy, Herman Cain "never lost faith in America" and oddly "found inspiration in the experience" as it reinforced the values his parents had instilled in him.
Source: Chauncey De Vega, Salon.com, "Apologist for White Racism" , Mar 21, 2011

Won't appoint Muslims to Cabinet nor judgeships

Q: You came under controversy this week for comments made on Muslims. Would you be comfortable appointing a Muslim to your Cabinet or as a federal judge?

A: No. I will not, and here's why. There is this creeping attempt to gradually ease Shariah law and the Muslim faith into our government. It does not belong in our government.

This is what happened in Europe. And to try to be politically correct, they made this little change and that little change, and now they have a social problem that they don't know what to do with.

The question that raised [the controversy] was, "What is the role of Islam in America?" I said the role of Islam was for those that believe in Islam to practice it and leave us alone, just like Christianity. I get upset when some Muslims in America try to force their Shariah law on the rest of us.

Source: Interview on "Think Progress" , Jan 1, 2011

It depends on what you mean by the term 'affirmative action'

When I ran in the 2004 Republican U.S. Senate primary in Georgia, the majority of my support came from white Georgians, not urban Atlanta's African-Americans. Those who supported my campaign and voted for me embraced my issue-based campaign.

What did the media always want to ask me about? My position on affirmative action. My standard answer was, "It depends on what you mean by the term 'affirmative action'." That usually caused blank stares from the reporters and allowed me to turn the focus back on the big issues.

In the real world, the individuals who usually rise to the top of their chosen professions and achieve their dreams are the most talented and hardest working. In the political world, success is too often determined by political tenure, timing and factors none of us can control, such as our race, ethnicity or sex.

Source: Political column, THE New Voice, "Diversity Distraction" , Jan 29, 2007

I oppose government-imposed hiring quotas

Though my positions on the political issues have wavered little throughout my life, I honestly did not realize I was a conservative until I began my campaign for US Senate. I am pro-life on the issue of abortion. I fully support the Second Amendment right to bear arms. I am opposed to a government-imposed quota system on hiring practices. I believe we must replace the out-of-date federal tax code, and I believe Congress must severely cut back on its wasteful spending. But I did not know the term conservative defined my belief system. Prior to initial consultations with my campaign consultants when I ran for US Senate in Georgia, no one had ever packaged my political views into a single term.
Source: They Think You're Stupid, by Herman Cain, p. 21-26 , Jun 14, 2005

If you believe in Bible, same-sex marriage is moot point

The issue of same-sex marriage was a hot issue in 2004. Eleven states featured ballot initiatives that asked voters if they support a ban on legalizing same-sex unions. The initiatives passed overwhelmingly in all 11 states.

My pastor had a reply ready to those in his congregation who asked him his position on the same-sex marriage issue:"What part of the Bible do you want to throw out?" If you believe in the Bible, then the issue is a moot point. We cannot separate this "civil rights issue," as the Democrats call it, from the moral issue. There is a tendency among liberals to lower a moral standard to accommodate a civil behavior. The difference between the civil rights struggle and the so-called gay struggle is that the civil rights struggle constantly moved this nation upward to live up to the ideal that "All men are created equal, endowed by their Creator." The gay rights struggle involves altering the established moral principle of marriage as the union between one man and one woman.

Source: They Think You're Stupid, by Herman Cain, p. 89-90 , Jun 14, 2005

Amendment to protect the sacred institution of marriage

[Reacting to a ruling by the Massachusetts Supreme Court that allowed for same-sex marriage]: The courts have failed the American people. Congress needs to enact a constitutional amendment to protect the sacred institution of marriage. Liberal-minded judges have opened a floodgate of judicial tyranny that will chip away at the core values of this country until nothing sacred is left! It started with not allowing prayer in schools, not being able to display the Ten Commandments, attempting to take God out of the Pledge of Allegiance and now making same-sex marriages legal.

A constitutional amendment is needed to protect the definition of marriage as the legal union of one man and one woman. If we don't act now all states could be forced to accep same-sex marriages performed in Massachusetts. We cannot allow this to happen! The long-term effects will further destroy the moral fabric of our society. Congress needs to take action on instituting a constitutional amendment to defend marriage now.

Source: Herman's Column Archive, North Star Writer's Group , Feb 1, 2002

Women face added challenge of male dominated higher ranks

We applaud women who can ascend to the highest ranks of business and government, because of the added challenges of succeeding in a traditionally male dominated environment. We also applaud men who choose to be Mr. Mom. They put their commitments to their wives and to their children above any threats to their ego. In both instances, we give our sons and daughters permission to dream beyond traditional family boundaries.
Source: CEO of SELF, by Herman Cain, p.115 , Aug 1, 2001

I removed the barriers rather than let barriers remove me

In 1967, I wanted to get a haircut, and I did not know any of the barbershops. I sat there for about thirty minutes while everybody was told "next" except for me. I finally asked one of the barbers. He told me they were not allowed to cut black people's hair. If I had not asked, I might still be sitting there. I chose to remove the barriers rather than allow the barriers to remove me. I left the barbershop that day and bought a set of hair clippers to cut my own hair. I have been cutting it ever since. The barrier called "lack of master's degree" took a lot longer to remove. I was able to go back to graduate school. I attended Purdue.
Source: CEO of SELF, by Herman Cain, p. 14-15 , Aug 1, 2001

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Page last updated: Oct 01, 2016