In a most astounding turn of events, it's been discovered that the controversial Senator Strom Thurmond (R-SC) is a blood relative of his polar opposite, the Rev. Sharpton. Seriously. This gives whole new meaning to truisms such as "Never say never" and "You can't choose your relatives." The staggering news was brought to the civil right activist by an Ancestry.com genealogy team that included Tony Burroughs, a professor here at Chicago State University.
Senator Thurmond died in 2003, but not before dedicating most of his 100 years to racial divisiveness. However after his death, to the astonishment of many, an African American named Essie Mae Washington-Williams made national headlines, stepping forward as the "secret daughter" of the staunch segregationist.
And now this...
The family connection involves Rev. Sharpton's great-grandfather and Sen. Thurmond's great-great grandfather. Probably picking himself up off the floor, Rev. Sharpton said, "It's chilling. It's amazing..."
It would appear a very intense gene for protest exists in this bloodline. Rev. Sharpton is planning a press conference to discuss it. Perhaps by then, his near-speechlessness will have passed. A boycott of Ancestry.com also could be in the works.