Excerpt from Unless WE Tell It … It Never Gets Told!
An Incomplete and Dishonest
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.
— The Declaration of Independence
The poignant words above speak to the foundation of the United States of America—and, more important, to the proclamation of freedom and equality for its citizens.
Correction: for some of its citizens. America’s founding fathers did not practice what it was that they wrote in the documents that laid the blueprints for this country. It is easy to see the hypocrisy of Thomas Jefferson, the acknowledged author of the Declaration of Independence and the father of the Constitution, writing these glorious words of freedom while at the same time he kept more than a hundred persons in chained bondage. Equality was not a true consideration. “Equality” was simply a word whose meaning rang hollow. Equality for Blacks meant chains and violence and degradation in the racist and well-defined institution of slavery. It is really quite extraordinary that this Christian country and its pious government allowed human beings to be held in chained bondage. But when you consider the economic advantage gained through free forced labor, Christianity was simply a ruse by American capitalism.
How flawed is a country whose founding documents speak of “freedom,” yet that criminally holds a portion of its population in bondage and slavery?
How flawed is a country that passes racist laws, creates discriminatory governmental policies, and develops arcane societal categories designed to keep that same portion of its population in their place based on the color of their skin?
How flawed is a country whose history is built on “free” slave labor and the degradation of millions of human beings?
How flawed is a country that refuses to apologize for slavery and refuses to acknowledge the wrongs done to millions of its citizens?
How flawed is a country that creates and designs its own special brand of racism?
How academically pure, and historically and culturally informative it would be, to teach an honest American history!
How academically pure, and historically and culturally informative it would be, to find the names of the many Black Americans who impacted us as a nation in classroom textbooks!
Robert Kennedy said, “Truth is the token of trust.” Not teaching the honest history of the role that Black Americans played in the development of this country keeps the playing field eternally uneven. The infrastructure of racism is rooted in dishonesty.