There’s a valuable lesson I’ve learned over the course of my life:
Anything you do with malicious intent will always come back to you full circle and return the favor.
Donald J. Trump would be wise to heed those words.
In one of the most calculating and disturbing speeches I’ve heard him deliver to date, Trump stood before a podium and pledged sign to an executive order to teach “patriotic education” neatly packaged in what he calls the “1776 Commission.”
It’s no coincidence that Trump chose a historical date for the title of his proposed solution to basically keep schools exactly the way they are, since the history taught to our children is already an indoctrination of the truth based on White supremacy.
It was a play on the Pulitzer Prize winning 1619 Project created by the New York Times. Nikole Hannah-Jones is the investigative journalist directing the project that consists of essays from several Times journalists, including Hannah-Jones, discussing the consequences of slavery and highlighting the stories and contributions of Black Americans in this country. The project was released in 2019 to commemorate the 400 year mark of the capture and enslavement of Africans who were brought to America for the sole purpose of servitude.
Trump suggested that teaching children the history of slavery in this country was “child abuse” and declared to his devoted audience that he would not let that happen.
Let’s talk about child abuse, shall we?
Would it be fair to say that ripping children from the safety of their mother’s arms and forcing them into servitude is child abuse?
Would it be unreasonable to suggest that whipping a child’s back until the skin was literally torn off the child’s body is abuse?
Would it be wrong to assume that denying a child the right to learn to read, write, and speak effectively is child abuse?
Would it be outrageous to say that forcefully mandating a child to hard labor for more than 12 hours a day is child abuse?
Would it be ridiculous to assert that taking a child from everything she knows, stripping her of her native language, culture, and land, and classifying her as sub-human is child abuse?
The fact that Trump had the unmitigated gall to suggest that teaching the true history and legacy of slavery in this country would be considered abusive and unconstitutional is ludicrous. With a straight face and the most bizarre, even tone I’ve ever heard him use, he calmly explained why the critical race theory and the 1619 Project was a danger to this country because it suggested that America was build on “the principle of oppression and not freedom.”
Basically, he has a problem with both the theory and the project because each details the full truth of African-American history and slavery. This makes sense as it’s common knowledge he had no relationship with the truth before and even after he became president.
Of all the ridiculous, racist, outlandish, and blatant lies I have heard come out of this man’s mouth in my lifetime, Trump’s attempt to once again bury the truth and insidious genesis of this country is by far one of his most egregious transgressions. He has no qualms of completely annihilating the stories of our African ancestors whose journeys and lives are just as deserving of being immortalized in American history as the Confederate soldiers’ statues he created harsh penalties to protect.
Is a slab of concrete more valuable than the lives and history of the people who built this country?
Apparently according to Trump, the answer is an unequivocal and resounding yes.
In Trump’s America, Black lives will never matter. Black history will never matter. The truth about the journeys of our enslaved ancestors will never matter and certainly won’t have a place in schools where White children could be “indoctrinated” with the vicious truth of how “America the Beautiful” really came to be. Best to just “hush these Black folk up” and make sure they don’t keep spreading “lies” that this country was founded with White supremacist ideals that remain in effect to this day.
How un-American would it be to actually tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, right? That might mean that young children would grow up to understand why Colin Kaepernick taking a knee wasn’t at all unpatriotic and in fact was the definition of HEROIC.
That might suggest that those Confederate soldiers who fought to ensure my ancestors and their lineages remained enslaved to serve and build their country weren’t actually deserving of all the reverence and praise given to them by some Americans.
Most of all, that might empower all Black children to grow up with the strength and determination to secure themselves in positions of power and influence with the unified goal of completely eradicating systemic racism and White supremacy for good.
That’s what the truth does. It gives life to super-human powers that lie dormant and undetected in the mind of the beholder.