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There is a version of American history that starts out with, "Once upon a time..."

That is the history I was taught. (I'm 70) It is a myth, a fairy tale, not only because of what is told, but because what is left out.

America would not be the nation it is without slavery and genocide, starting from when the first Europeans set foot on this continent. That is a fact, a fact that colors all that this nation has accomplished. If we can, as a nation, acknowledge that fact, we can truly realize our great potential, and begin to make the myth a reality. That was the message of Martin Luther King.

But that myth is the basis of an entrenched power structure that will hold onto it with a death grip, because if the myth dies, so must the power structure.

This will not be easy.

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I haven't read much from the 1619 Project, but what I've seen is most impressive. The 1776 "Project" is a joke by comparison. The loudest GQP voices on history education and race are willfully ignorant about both.

Gerald Horne, one of our most hard-working historians, concurs with 1619's view of slavery in the Revolution.

Horne, Gerald. The counter-revolution of 1776: slave resistance and the origins of the United States of America. New York University, 2014. 349p index afp ISBN 9781479893409, $39.00.

Horne (Univ. of Houston) holds a distinctive view of watershed historical dates. The Glorious Revolution of 1688 brought political order to Britain and encouraged free trade. This facilitated massive slave imports into the American colonies, destabilizing colonial societies with the specter of racial conflicts and rebellious slaves allied with foreign invaders. Horne also asserts the less-familiar importance of 1772. That year's landmark Somerset decision by Lord Mansfield effectively banned slavery in England, signaling a trend in favor of rights for Africans. In June 1772, Rhode Islanders defied imperial authority by burning HMS Gaspee. Colonists' determination to continue profiting from "the slavery trade" ultimately led to independence, but 1776 was partly a counterrevolution against London's nascent antislavery sentiment. This narrative is often about white anxieties in Britain, the Caribbean, and North America. Readers seldom hear the voices of free and unfree Africans, though their actions (flight, rebellion, everyday resistance) speak clearly enough. Horne's interpretation emphasizes material factors over political philosophy and ideas in general. It directly challenges conventional views of the American Revolution but, based on extensive evidence, deserves close reading. Summing Up: Recommended. Academic and large public libraries; undergraduates and above.

Choice Vol. 52, Issue 4, Dec 2014 American Library Association. Contact permissions@ala-choice.org for permission to reproduce or redistribute.

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I just have to say that I LOVE being on this forum with a bunch of historians. Not a single day goes by that I don't learn something vital and accurate. Thanks to you all.

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I so agree. None of this was taught when I was in school.

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Lynda, when I was in school, there was an essay contest every year, sponsored by the United Daughters of the Confederacy. My mother enrolled me every year, I suppose because she thought “people would talk” if she didn’t, and I wasn’t old enough to rebel. I did as little work as I could get by with. We were given time during class, when we should have been learning *anything* else, to work on these essays. This is by way of saying that any teacher who had taught us anything that went against the Glorious Cause narrative would have lost her (always her) job.

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I had a few friends when I was working that did the entire foolish Daughters of the Confederacy thing up to dressing up and re-enactment. I always thought it was ridiculous, but honestly I didn't realize the harm it was doing until much later.

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For those essays & poetry submissions, be sure to avoid the phrase “Civil War. Instead use “War Between the States.” lol

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My New Englander's view: it's The War to Fulfill America's Promise. But I just say or write "Civil War."

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Oh the good ole DAR! Ugh

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The DAR is a very different organization than the DAC. Both have their issues, but the DAC are just plain racist.

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For the past 10 years, I’ve been indexing for the DAR Genealogical Research System, a tool to help history students, researchers, scholars and teachers. Not an “ugh.”

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Ditto!!

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Thanks back at ya, Reid. We learn much from you as well.

In every course, I ask students who among them plans to be a teacher. With many business or IT majors, few if any answer Yes, especially when I taught history at a business school. My reply: "WRONG. You answered a question not posed. I didn't ask who will be a professional educator; the question is, who will purposely impart information, knowledge and/or wisdom?" Once they realize what's at issue, they understand that we all teach others: children, peers, friends, co-workers, even our bosses. (Among the worst is when we train someone who will take our job. Argh!) This also means that we're all students too, and should be throughout life.

The point: we all act as teachers, whether we know or wish it. And most LFAA readers have something to offer. So, now that we know, seize the opportunity!

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My thoughts exactly! SO grateful to have these lessons to wake up to each day.

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TPJ, as one of the fellow historians in this conversation group, I concur that some of the most interesting work published in the last 5-10 years is reassessing not just US and North American colonial history (and how I wish people would start paying more attention to Canada in discussion of the era before the invention of the USA), but also British and European history. The impact of the Cromwellian Interregnum on the psyches of British people has been understudied. The tactics Cromwell used in Ireland against Catholics served as a blueprint for genocide in the colonies, and the expansion of the plantation system from Ulster to the colonies, with its parallel expansion of the kinds of enslaved and pressed labor developed in order to effect it, has not been discussed sufficiently by either British or US historians.

One of the biggest problems we have is that "American" history has almost always been a closed shop: Historians outside the USA have, until recently, eschewed studying US history. This is changing, but slowly. As a British historian whose background is anything but British, I find I have a different perspective on the history of the British Isles, as I am not particularly influenced by some emotion-driven notion of "patriotism" in the work I do. I am not saying that American-born historians are incapable of being critically engaged--far from it. But we have these jokers whose "education" in US history was probably taught in high school by football coaches (that's who taught US history in my high school and many others) who have absolutely no idea of how to think critically about the past. Unfortunately, they appeal to the basest emotional instincts of the dominant white population in order to demonize everyone else.

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And never forget the text books that shaped the curriculum everywhere. If Texas didn’t adopt a text book, it was/is dead on arrival, as the big publishing houses well knew. Authors were carefully edited and teachers required to follow the prescribed program. I published a textbook for junior college communications with a major publisher in 1986. It took my co-author and I four years to respond to all the editing and for the company to bring the book out.

I was a teacher in a very progressive public school later. Happily, in our system teachers were free to dispense with textbooks. It made more work for teachers but such better opportunity to help students of all ages learn research skills, questioning, and discernment.

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So I mentioned this in an earlier comment, but I've been thinking about it all day.

When I was in school, there was no Google. Our town, when I was young, had no bookstores: as I mentioned, the closest we had was the Hallmark store, and the "lurid paperback" rack at the supermarket, and of course, the magazine racks, and least half of which were up high with only the top edges showing. My parents got us a World Book Encyclopedia set, twenty-some volumes of the "authoritative history of everything." The county library had what it had, and there was a card catalogue, but its curation was a bit haphazard.

The real Authority was the textbooks we were given in our classes, because it consisted of material we had to memorize and regurgitate, though typically only once. There was no real synthesis of ideas, just discrete sections with discrete globs of things to memorize, regurgitate, and forget. But we all knew that if it was in the Textbook, it was right, and the teacher was wrong.

Now, I can go online and learn how to install and mud drywall (that's been a home project, and we did a good job), gather enough information to write an algorithm for reproducible floating-point sums, get an overview of global warming trends (with data), read three competing histories of the attack on Pearl Harbor, order a book on John Dee's Enochian Magick.... If I can ask the question, I can get answers.

It's like something out of Arthur C. Clarke's Against the Fall of Night.

So how DO you approach the teaching of history? Can it be summarized?

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When I taught third grade my class and I researched and wrote and published neighborhood histories. We began with the neighborhood around our school, which included many olh houses as well as the site of the first gristmill in our county. We discussed how we could learn what the neighborhood was like 150 years earlier. We walked downtown to the main branch library and discovered the Sanborne insurance maps as well as old city directories. We found a history of Asheville ( our city) houses. We knocked on doors and interviewed people. Eventually we divided the research into pieces and kids wrote different sections. We invited the man who lived on the gristmill site to talk to us. We had discussions about how you could decide which was the correct answer when one source gave a different date than another. It was a fascinating project for all of us. We integrated language arts, social studies, research, etc. These were 8 and 9 year olds, and at the end of the year we went to a City Council meeting where a few of the kids got up and gave reasons why the neighborhood should be designated a historic district.(It did).

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Like that. We are skewed in our objectivity (accuracy) by our emotion-driven notions.

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Thanks, Linda. I hadn't considered the take-over of Ireland as prelude to other colonial endeavors. That makes perfect sense to me.

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The 1619 Project Podcast is available. I highly recommend it.

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The 1619 Podcast was excellent. If there are degrees of excellent, it was very!

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Excellently excellent

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I second this. The written version is even better because more expansive, but the podcast is a wonderful summary.

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Thank you Kelly.

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I have learned so much more about our history as a country in the last 10 years, about America as a whole, about my own state (NC) in particular. That history that l learned on my own is much more complex than the version l was taught in school. Economic forces were usually the drivers of history. I want to recommend Colin Woodard whose two books, “American Nations” and “American Character” taught me things I did not know. Check out the book descriptions on Amazon.

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As I recall the 1619 view of slavery arrived as a special section of our Nytimes one Sunday. I read it and found it fascinating and plausible. I was early educated in the NY state public education system. I feel it is correct that we learned mostly the great myths about our country.

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Thank you TPJ for bringing, Horne, Gerald. The counter-revolution of 1776: slave resistance and the origins of the United States of America. New York University, 2014, to our attention. I am taking the long way before returning to Gerald Home's work.

I was somewhat lost after finishing today's Letter. Only some memories of my Social Studies classes in elementary school came to mind. Seeing lean-tos and the Indian's clothing, so different from what we wore wafted into my mind. Feeling patriotic or like a 'Girl Scout' when getting into the Brotherhood spirit as a schoolgirl. It felt good widening our circle of people when in Social Studies classes. The hours there were as mini dramas. There was the sense of play absent from my academic of math and reading classes.

'The department is proposing two priorities to reach low-income students and underserved populations. The Republicans object to the one that encourages “projects that incorporate racially, ethnically, culturally, and linguistically diverse perspectives into teaching and learning.” (The Letter). I want to be in the classes for the low-income students and underserved populations; they sound a lot more interesting. Why aren't classes that incorporate racially, ethnically, etc., diverse perspectives taught to all the children? I would go farther than the Department of Education.

While we will delve into this White v. Other war that the Republicans are waging, doesn't this present a great opportunity for us to learn our American History differently? Won't we 'educated Whites' enjoy taking bites from a revised American History curriculum, in addition to fighting the current Civil War? I'm back to Gerald Home's work, TPJ. Heather is sending us back to school!

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Thank you, TPJ.

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Same back at ya, RD. It was good to meet onscreen through Heather's Herd. Keep the comments coming!

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There is an excellent podcast of the 1619 project available on Stitcher as well as other podcast platforms

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Indeed you are right. "But that myth is the basis of an entrenched power structure that will hold onto it with a death grip, because if the myth dies, so must the power structure. " See my post on my experience as a researcher of US history.

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And this is the exact reason for the 'Big Lie'. The myth is rapidly crumbling.

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As far as Mc Connell's train of thought that even discussing racism, here in NH, the newly Republican majority (a result of the Nov. election) has been falling in lockstep w/him, just as the southern states mentioned have done. They have passed HB 544, a gag order that prevents essentially anyone from even discussing racism or offer any diversity training or teaching such concepts. I sincerely hope that the ALCU will challenge this in court. As Dr H said, it IS unconstitutional re Freedom of Speech guaranteed in the Constitution. I truly fear that the super majority SCOTUS would go along with this UNCONSTITUTIONAL train of thought.

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Turned 71 today and looking back to the 60’s and 70’s, it looks like the same ol’ same ol’ to me. I’d love to see this has come up to be healed but I thought that then also. Just seems like circles to me, fighting the same old battle over and over again.

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I turn 71 in two weeks and have had similar thoughts. But then when we went into Iraq and Afghanistan I wondered, “What’s the end game? Will these be two more long, pointless wars? Did we learn anything from Vietnam?” Guess not.

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What was learned from Vietnam was not to send a draftee army to fight an imperial war. The antiwar movement was fueled by the draft calls; you'll notice the large antiwar movement that exists today, when the fighting and dying only affects 1.5% of the population.

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Happy birthday to you,

Happy birthday to you,

Happy birthday dear Elaine,

Happy birthday to you!

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When you've got a job as big as the job America has now, you can't just dig your shovel in, scrabble around a little, sweat a little, and say you're done with it. Our project has to be more like archaeology, I think: dig carefully, dust things off, look at them in the light (definitely with direction from HCR), analyze and synthesize and act. Then dig a little more. I'm not, by the way, suggesting that we should do it slowly. There is an urgency in the air now, and it provides, no, demands energy. Let's roll up our collective sleeves, energize our minds and hearts, and get it done. I've got three score and ten-plus behind me, and of course there are and will be times when I mutter, "Damn. I thought we did that already," to myself.

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I want to do that too and I try very hard not to feel helpless, but in a state where it will fall on deaf ears and where my friends and family think I am crazy and a radical leftist, it is hard.

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Crazy and a radical leftist? Wear it like a badge of honor!

Much sympathy to you Lynnda, and Nance too. Even here in bluest MA, we often encounter something similar, especially with the crises in racial justice and policing. Even moderates imagine that real law enforcement reform will leave them exposed to nameless, faceless danger. (Though the faces cannot be discerned, they are almost always dark ones.) Most who will not stay silent, and who celebrate last year's protests, see friendships strained or lost. Yet progressives and moderates reach out and find each other, achieve new understandings, make wonderful new friendships, and build community. Cf. Letters from an American.

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I try to be proud of what I believe and sure in the knowledge that I've taken the high road and done my homework. But it's really difficult when your brother tells you that many of our "mutual friends and family" have deleted my posts on FB because they make them so mad. I want to say - then why don't they try to discern what's really going on. But I don't.

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Oh, Lynnda, I am so, so sorry. Right now I'm a lefty in a pretty red little town, but I've got good friends, and this forum . . . although I suspect my sister will never speak to me again. My thoughts are with you.

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I blame Trump and Fox"news" for the extreme divide we are in. I cannot get my brother to see that we are no longer discussing Left vs Right issues, but we are discussing Democracy vs Authoritarian/corruption/craziness/and on and on.

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Nancy 100%. The best part of digging for knowledge is that we never get dirty, at least not much.

PS, we saw what you did in using "three score and ten." Please confirm. (Or not; I may be wrong. Never rule out that possibility.)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PEjW9Pxildo

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So nice of you to write, TPJ. I love The Clancy Brothers (Tommy Makem, too), and I'd never heard this song with the "three score and ten." I was referring to my age, which is three score (60) and (10, plus. . . ) so, 74, and fast closing on 75. It's taken me such a long time to heal from doing work I thought was good, then returning to it years later, only to find it erased. I helped knock down the unnecessary Caesarean section rates where I lived in the 70s, only to find them soaring 20 years later. Sigh. I had a friend who was in the Peace Corps and managed the digging of wells for people who had little access to water. She visited nine years later and could barely find the sand-filled holes. Well, you know what I mean. When we make change, we work hard, and we want it to stick. I'm getting better at facing what I see is probably a reality, but right now, I'd give a lot just to see things move . . .

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So I was wrong, and the connection is serendipitous. Oops!

My parents' early Makem/Clancy record is among my first musical memories. I had the great privilege of finally seeing Tommy about 20 years ago. He and Liam C made several fine records together. You are in for a treat.

The world is littered with aid and development projects that look like failure, but in fact, success is real, though finite. I had some success with a project fighting cattle disease in Zambia in the 1990s Such efforts often do achieve something for a while, including yours.

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That's what I keep telling myself :) It's good to have confirmation. Thanks!

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Happy Birthday 🌸🌺🌼

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Happy Birthday, Elaine! Cheers!

Yes, some in America can't let go of feeling like being the White Masters of the Universe. We keep coming back to it. It's old and it's new again. It is also so boring, ugly and dangerous, still.

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Happy Birthday, Elaine!

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I agree, it’s not easy Ralph, but we are making progress in becoming a more just nation once again with the election of a mensch.

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I agree with you. I am the same age as you. Born and raised in a rural town in NC. Our history books never taught us about slavery and the white man’s foray into raping, lynching, and denial. I was surprised that Anne Frank’s book was required reading though.

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Here's a gem that's not likely to be in the textbooks in the near future: TJ Loves Sally 4 Ever

Written by James Ijames

Directed by Pascale Florestal

In Partnership with

Boston Conservatory at Berklee

http://www.speakeasystage.com/tj-loves-sally/

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Right on Ralph!

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Ralph, Wait! You mean John Wayne didn't win the West?? George Washington didn't chop down his daddy's cherry tree?

Seriously, your points are well taken. I've got a few years on ya, and I learned the same -you'll pardon the expression - white-washed version of American History you describe.

At least when I was in what is now called 'middle school', we did learn civics, by which I mean, the mechanics of how it's all supposed to work.

When my daughter was in middle school in NC, in the 1990s, civics had become a mere shadow of its former self, and was bundled into 'social studies', which was a mish-mash of some history, some geography, and very little clarity and NO depth. I was horrified.

I have never been a fan of home schooling, but if I had school age kids now, and the local system followed the Trumpian dictates, I would become a home schooler in a skinny minute.

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Sobbing doesn’t help, but it’s an appropriate reaction. I will miss Democracy and loathe the Autocracy when it takes control.

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Don’t surrender yet, Nancy. To paraphrase John Paul Jones, we have just begun to fight! And to quote the British-American naval commander, “If fear is cultivated it will become stronger, if faith is cultivated it will achieve mastery.”

As you can tell from the responses to Dr, HCR’s “Letters...”, her readers are just beginning to draw up plans, decide on strategies, and create tactics, to do moral and intellectual battle with the “forces of darkness” who threaten our national existence. Far from conceding the contest, we are committed to confronting the evil and destroying it with goodness.

By banding together with like-minded people we can deliver mortal blows to self-serving falsehood with the keen-edged sword of truth! Unity, courage and perseverance are the arrows in the quivers of the righteous!

No need to sorrow or concede to the greedy, ignorant horde. We can and will win the day!

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Bill 100%. I often say the same thing, but your eloquent exposition is much appreciated.

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TPJ, thank you for that kind, dare I say, overly generous, response. On re-reading the copy I was struck by the perhaps florid style that I am all too likely to lapse into. I wanted to be comforting and encouraging, but the scent of flora was a bit overwhelming.

Anyway, thanks my brother!

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I was born in the late 1940’s. In junior high and high school I suffered though domestic arts and sewing classes and I never seemed to get it right. I never learned to make the perfect white sauce and I always put the sleeves in backward. So, I had to get out the thread picker and unstitch them and put them in right. The normalisation of slavery in American put it’s sleeves in wrong in the fabric of democracy from the very beginning. It is going to take a lot of diligent unpicking and resewing to create an garment fit to be worn with pride and true to the proposition that all people are created equal with Liberty and justice for all. But it can be done, Biden is giving it a go. The macerations of the far right are right on cue. Lie, gaslight, mislead, on and on. Life can be complicated but doing the right thing really is not. The golden rule, kindness, equality before the law, these are worth striving for. For an ill fitting garment is not a lovely or practical thing to behold, but it can be altered to fit, given the will to do so. And by the way, later in life I discovered you can buy this stuff called wondra flour and pour it into milk and viola....white sauce!

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I am an anology-speaker as well - use them a lot ( maybe too much) - so your comment, Robin, is right up my alley! 😄 I agree with your view that we have a varied cloth of experience and history - the body that it is draped on changes as it ages, or we completely flub putting on those sleeves - and it is of utmost importance to keep looking in the mirror, acknowledging the condition of that fabric and it's fit, and working towards making those alterations. I am grateful for HCR and the community that has built up around her Letters. It has let me understand how very much I needed to look in the mirror to see at least some of the alterations to my own understanding of our US history are needed. I know my teen daughter's generation will have a much more nuanced historical garment to wear, even now, than I did as a young adult. That can only be a good thing.

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Well wrapped up! You drape your arguements peruasively around a "corps" of essential truth.

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Robin, I love your sense of common sense. “the sleeves in wrong in the fabric of democracy”.... a lot of us “white folk” are up to the task of unpicking and resewing. I see it as just due for all the “picking and sowing” done by slaves and claimed as agricultural profit by whites.

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Terrific analogy, Robin!

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Good morning, Lynell!

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Morning, Ally!! (I'm way ahead of you; time-wise, that is!

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Yes you are! And I'm an early riser out west.

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I too suffered through sewing classes Robin, and never could get the sleeves or zipper to fit right. Lots of time spent with the ripper. Your analogy made me smile thinking about those days, and made me think how perfectly it describes how America really did put the sleeves in wrong in the fabric of our democracy. It’s time to get to work with that ripper.

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You're probably safe, as long as the ripper isn't named Jack.

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My mother (born in 1924) always said that the first thing she learned about knitting was that the three basic stitches are knit, purl, and rip (undo previous work).

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In the construction world, we call it 'New construction remodeling' whenever you have to take apart what you just built.

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Ahh Seattle, my home town. How is it faring these days? We have not been able to go back to our condo-friends and family there for almost two years now.

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It really depends on who you ask. Seattle is a marvelous city from my perspective, and I've been here since 1980.

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So true. Those of us who remember it before the freeway, before Amazon, can get quite nostalgic about it’s past. It’s funny but the small Welsh town were I live now is quite a bit like Seattle in the 50’s. Butcher, bakery, you know everyone on your street. My husband, who spent time in it as a youth remembers all the things that are gone now that he says made it better than now. I guess regretting change is just human. But embracing the the good, interesting and new keeps a person moving forward...the only way to go.

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Joan, I learned a term, tink (the alphabetic opposite of knit), for undoing your work, one stitch at a time. One of many things I learned from Knitting Paradise, an online forum. ☺️

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What a wonderful way to help us all understand the work ahead. I might like to make a lapel pin out of the thread picker in my drawer, which I have owned about since the days of incomplete history class. Thank you, thank you, Robin.

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Love this analogy Robin.

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Wonderfully stitched Robin. Your analogy was thrilling. While I didn't suffer as you did in home ed., my fingers never felt as inadequate. At the end of the class, I managed to create a lustrous purple skirt. While not the best in the class, the skirt looked good enough. It was a miracle that I couldn't stop staring at it.

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Yes, sewing miracles do happen...so glad you had your’s😊

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When I read McConnell's claim that "American pride was at its lowest point in 20 years", I was skeptical. So I googled it (https://news.gallup.com/poll/312644/national-pride-falls-record-low.aspx). Turns out he's right about the measure of American pride. Gallup's poll shows that pride in America was remarkably steady from 2000 through 2016 - hovering around 80-85% year after year. Until Trump took office. Then national pride fell 20 points in 3 years. I wonder why?

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There are days when I am grateful for the TFG era, for forcing our hidden caste system into bright light. I and so many other privileged white people could begin to understand what we did not know. Much of it was not taught in the Virginia schools where I went to high school, especially anything about oppression of any non white culture. I have been an adult for a long time and certainly could have found out about these things. But I was “busy” believing voting rights acts, and months celebrating women, or various cultures had righted the wrongs. But once you know, you know. I believe there can be correction and healing AND patriotism, coexisting. It will involve pain, discomfort and sacrifice. The essential tonic is knowledge, coming to us via many dedicated historians and delightful younger generation sources like Amanda Gorman. My thanks to every one of you.

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Yes, while it's painful (and embarrassing) to admit that Trump had to be elected for me to get all the way to anti-racism, his election was a powerful goad and a deep recalibration of my assumptions about the people of this country.

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I find myself in a similar boat, although I had started fighting this battle in earnest after Michael Brown was murdered in Ferguson, MO by law enforcement. I had to really stretch my ways of thinking about race and law enforcement.

**In case no one knows, retired cop, use of force trainer and hostage negotiator, living in an almost entirely white region of Oregon.

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The hill you had to climb was so much steeper than mine; you have my admiration. I do not mean that you started out as more racist than me (than I? I can never keep it straight), but that the cultures within which you were and are operating may have been more likely to give cover to implicit (and explicit) bias. Good for you for digging deep. We all have so much work to do.

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I echo what Reid said below. I only wish there were many more of you in the profession.

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I agree, Reid and Ally. I've always been open to all groups and view equality across races, genders, and religions, but being forced to think otherwise helped me to learn and engage in anti-racism thoughts and actions. I've grown a lot the last 5 years.

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Ally, I am a former Oregonian. After my degree in Broadcasting (74’) at the U of O. I worked at a TV station in Medford, Oregon. A friends husband worked as a cop in Ashland, Oregon. He said once riding with his partner that they saw a POC on the street. His partner said “ya there are about six of them here and we know where they all live.” After having lived with a person of color at the U of O. It came as such a shock. I never considered myself a a liberal. There where a number of friends from the Broadcasting department working there. Every executive at the station there Were white male chauvinist. They had an executive little club called “the Jolly boys”. After a couple of years they had to let this little “Jolly girl” into their group after I moved into sales. The FCC was going to challenge their license. We made a big joke out of it and made our own club we called ourselves the “Jolly Pee-Ons.”

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I grew up in Medford, and graduated HS in 1976. I'm sure you knew (or knew of) Tam Moore; he is one of my best friend's Dad. What TV station did you work for, and who was your friend's husband? I got my degree in Criminology from SOSC in 1981 and knew a fair number of APD.

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Lost your email. The person I went was Steve Deaton. He was there in the later 70's . It was only shortly then he got a job with Portland PD and went on from there to become a pilot for United.

I worked at KEMD I had the Promotions position when we changed it to KTVL. We did that when we sold the KMED call letter with the AM radio station. I don't know Tam he most have been at the other station. The fires there are just unbelievable. I spoke to friends in Portland this morning they were talking about the protests DT that are turning violent at night. Still. With only few arrests. She said she went through DT yesterday and there were 150 motorcycles lined up getting ready to do soon. They left quickly!

I have found memories of Southern Oregon. My only Fame to claim was that I help Anne Curry get her first job in TV. She went on to go to the TODAY show on NBC. Did you now David Sourer? His Dad was Pres. at SOSC. His sister worked at the Hungary Woodsman. I work with David at then KMED when I first got there. Good remembering with you .

Stay safer.

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Except that Michael Brown was not murdered . The grand jury and Eric Holder agreed.

From the liberal leaning WaPo

“So we wanted to set the record straight on the DOJ’s findings, especially after The Washington Post’s opinion writer Jonathan Capehart wrote that it was “built on a lie.” From time to time, we retroactively check statements as new information becomes available. In this case, the Justice Department has concluded that Wilson acted out of self-defense, and was justified in killing Brown.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fact-checker/wp/2015/03/19/hands-up-dont-shoot-did-not-happen-in-ferguson/

https://www.justice.gov/opa/speech/attorney-general-holder-delivers-update-investigations-ferguson-missouri

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Legally justified in the existing context is one thing. Morally justified, including justification of that context, would be something else. If our police were trained to see people of color as us, not them; if trained to act to reduce violence, not inflict superior violence; then Michael Brown and a long list of other people would be alive today.

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I agree that he was not prosecutable for murder, and I am normally more careful with my language than that.

The problem that I see with this "justification" is that (and I said this at the time, and was very unpopular in my non-cop social set) that in a very narrow window of time, to wit: the confrontation while the cop is seated in his patrol car and Mr. Brown is reaching in through the window <as I recall without looking up the details> that is a justified shoot. BUT: why was he seated in his patrol car while talking to Mr. Brown, why was he even talking with Mr. Brown in the first place, and did he say or do anything that may have provoked a violent response?

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Did you know the sun's going to rise in the west tomorrow? They're wrong. Which frequently happens, and involves both Ds and Rs.

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President Obama through his DOJ disagrees with you.

From the DOJ report.

This morning, the Justice Department announced the conclusion of our investigation and released a comprehensive, 87-page report documenting our findings and conclusions that the facts do not support the filing of criminal charges against Officer Darren Wilson in this case. Michael Brown’s death, though a tragedy, did not involve prosecutable conduct on the part of Officer Wilson.

“This conclusion represents the sound, considered, and independent judgment of the expert career prosecutors within the Department of Justice. I have been personally briefed on multiple occasions about these findings. I concur with the investigative team’s judgment and the determination about our inability to meet the required federal standard.

This outcome is supported by the facts we have found – but I also know these findings may not be consistent with some people’s expectations. To all those who have closely followed this case, and who have engaged in the important national dialogue it has inspired, I urge you to read this report in full. “

Not the result you wanted, but a conclusion based on fact.

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Though the wakeup call was essential, the election of 1/45 was no boon to America or anyone except Putin. Division, treason, sedition, a coup attempt, and most grievous, half a million avoidable deaths . . . so much unnecessary suffering . . . tragic.

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There's an old British saying from WW2 that "War is how Americans learn geography." Being a nation of hardheads, it takes a whole lot of whacking on the head to get the American Mule to recognize Reality.

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True saying from the Brits. but again, there's violent imagery. Please skip it.

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Trump taught me that as much as I thought I was "woke" from the experiences of my life since the 60s and my political involvements, that I still had further to go. And that I had drunk from the poisoned glass of tribalism too.

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I agree and will take your comment further by saying, 'correction and healing IS patriotic'. Isn't the very essence of democracy to have the freedom to right wrongs? And I agree, again, that knowledge is essential. In order to solve a problem, one must see and recognize the problem for what it is. It's a little like addiction, isn't it? One must first admit one has a problem before one can take the steps necessary to fix it.

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The history I was taught in lily-white Glendale, CA, in the ‘40s and ‘50s, started with the Pilgrims, moved quickly to the founding fathers (emphasis on fathers) and jumped to scenes of wheat turbines spewing out our great agricultural products to show how prosperous and down to earth we were. Good clean soil, no dirt, especially on our hands.

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As was the history that I was taught in lily-white (10% Hispanic) Glendale in the 60's and 70's. Glendale High School had 5 black students out of 3000. Some of the history teachers were forward thinking, though most of them were still a joke. Let it be remembered forever that Glendale Ca, was a Sundowner town,

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sundown_town

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In 1950 or so, an Indian family moved to Glendale; one of the sons, Nehru, was in my class. Some of the fine local citizens lit a cross on the family’s front lawn, thinking the family was Black. “Oops, honest mistake,” was the common reaction when told they were from India. My father and mother were horrified, but I think few others were.

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My High School history teacher didn't like me so he nicknamed me "Adolph"... That would get your a** handed to you these days...

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Just as Ally above mentioned that she was a "use of force" trainer, there needs to be training of teachers in the proper way to instruct these sensitive topics of slavery and racism in our schools. I am a retired Special Education teacher from NJ. The history curriculum in NJ requires the teaching of slavery in our elementary schools (starting in 5th gade). I have witnessed and heard of teachers having their students engage in projects such as holding 'slave auctions' writing advertisements for the selling of slaves, and acting out the transporting of slaves in the hulls of the ships by having the students lay down on the classrooom rug and squeeze in as close as possible. Teachers have gotten in trouble, reports of these 'lessons' have gone on the news, etc. Yet, it continues to happen. There needs to be training for such curriculum because so many people just don't get it!

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I went to high school in a fairly liberal suburb of Sacramento. We had one Black student and he ended up committing suicide. (I have no idea what the circumstances were and the two could be entirely unrelated. Still...).

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That's interesting. We had one black student at my high school - an outstanding athlete in several sports, high achiever academically. Committed suicide the month before the 10th year class reunion.

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I would have assumed that suicide rates among black men would be generally high, but it turns out that's not the case. Indigenous men #1, followed by white men. All others far behind. https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/statistics/suicide

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And history class in Texas in the 60s taught that "Lincoln freed the slaves. And the Texas Rangers were 'really good-guy heroes.' The end." (a pathetic indictment of the way textbooks have been co-opted and slanted for decades)

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And slaves were mostly happy agricultural workers who were, by and large, treated well.

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I didn't learn anything like that. But then I went to a progressive private secondary school in Massachusetts.

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That was pretty much the standard tale for us then.

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Don't get me wrong, slavery was WRONG in this telling. But it wasn't too bad. 🙄

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Trump taught us what we were in danger of losing through complacency.

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Remind me TFG, please?

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"That F-ing Guy", I believe. AKA Donald

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;D no wonder Google search couldn’t help!

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We speak our own esoteric language here on LFAA.

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Or The Former Guy

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The Former Guy

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Also "That F-ing Guy"

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That part about American pride falling under the last administration doesn’t surprise me! It was the most embarrassing presidency ever!

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Although I love American history, I've never felt "proud" to be an American. I feel a degree of responsibility to learn history, and to have an ongoing conversation about America, but Trump becoming president felt humiliating, and any pride I may have had before then was burned away. I think a large segment of Americans have little patience for subtlety and discussion... you either love the country or you don't. McConnell recognizes this. He knows that a large segment of the Republican base is a flag waving, patriotic, love it or leave it kind of voter. If they lose the self-esteem that they gained by electing Trump, then they may stop voting.

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What I learned out of my experiences in Vietnam that there is a big difference between loving the country (which I do) and supporting the government (which I mostly haven't). I knew the guy who was Librarian at RAND who let Daniel Ellsberg take the Pentagon Papers out and copy them. His name was Dick Best and he's known in history as the guy who turned the Battle of Midway from an American defeat to a victory by sinking the carrier Akagi almost single-handedly. A true American hero. And he told me he always believed he served his country better by what he did with Ellsberg than what he did over the Japanese fleet. "The American people deserved to know what had been done in their name."

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There is indeed a big dif between loving the country and supporting the gov't. And Dick Best had a damn good head on his shoulders. Thanks for these observations.

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Though mostly true of almost all politicians, in McConnell's case we can always assume there is a calculation of advantage in everything he does. He no longer operates on any principle whatsoever, if he ever did. Like Gollum with the Ring, power is his only lodestar.

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At least Gollum was a character that one could feel sympathy for...

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McConnell is a real sh!t, and someone who doesn't give a damn about the country. One interesting factoid about him: his three daughters are all estranged from him.

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One would think that would tell him something....

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Never knew he had pro-created!!!!

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It was probably a miracle. In any case, while in some cases, including my best friend and his ex-wife, give 'em a little time and they get along well. But Mitch's ex seems to realize she married a piece of slag (slag is much worse than sh!t because the latter is fertilizer and food for the dung beetles, whereas slag is poisonous).

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Didnt even realize that the current wife is No. 2!

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"Although I love American history, I've never felt 'proud' to be an American." That is me exactly. I've always been so deeply aware of our flaws that I find it impossible to say we are somehow exceptional.

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As a 12 year old living in France for a year, '65-'66, I felt proud to be an American. But now? We're the most backward of the western industrialized nations. We have much more poverty than the rest of them. We have a greater percentage of deaths by opioid overdose, many of which are suicides (I've written about this). Our infrastructure has been left to wither in the wake of the Reagan revolution.

But this critical race theory that is invading college campuses and private high schools is BS. We have a class problem as much as a race problem, and CRT is giving the GOP a new handle on attacking us.

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/24/us/smith-college-race.html

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There is a lot of problems in the USA right now. It feels overwhelming. The pendulum is swinging wildly and differently around the country. With that said, I also believe that if this country is to become a better place there needs to be space for voices and theories that one would consider to be BS. Again, I am open to at least listening to the conversation. Eventually, I believe the country will land in a different place with a different overall consensus. This excites me.

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I do think we have the right leader to lead us to a better place. We really lucked out, between getting rid of Delirium J. Tremens, getting both Houses, and getting the Democrat who is probably most prepared to deal effectively with the country's problems by dint of his experience. But critical race theory is very harmful, and stupid. Far better students should be taught empathy, beginning in elementary school.

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I like that and I would add that I would like to see “compassion” as part of more school experiences. For me the word compassion adds the component of action; doing things to contribute to community and the country.

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If you had actually studied critical race theory (I had to in order to write something accurate about it) you would find that it is actually very useful in learning how complicit we all can be, and what we need to do to get to where we claim we want to go.

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Maybe so, and maybe not, but in practice it often results in harm, as evidenced by the NYT article on Smith College that I posted, and numerous other articles I've read. I think teaching empathy would do everything people want critical race theory to do without the harm.

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Empathy, compassion and respect. Truth, justice and The American Way. Parents, school, religion. Throw them all in a melting pot and build back better.

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Telling the truth is never BS. We should look to the example of Germany and how they wrote and taught all school children the truth about the Holocaust 20 years after the war!

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I'm a Jew, and Germany did an excellent job. I knew a kid from Germany 20 years after the end of the Holocaust, and I saw first hand how well that had worked.

But the truth about privilege, and lack thereof in the US is much more complex than critical race theory makes it out to be. Money often has more power than race in this day and age. Think about all the working class whites in places like Appalachia and the rust belt, whose jobs have migrated to other countries or have been filled by immigrants, the amount of opioid addiction, and the numbers of deaths by opioid overdose--much of which are suicides (I've written about that). Substantial quantities of money trump skin color.

And I highly recommend this article to show you how badly critical race theory is often implemented. https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/24/us/smith-college-race.html

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I remember reading about that incident. And one of the commenters on there mentioned that there was no investigation into what would have happened if the student was white! Good question. But the whole issue was allowed (& almost encouraged by the college) to get way out of line. The student didnt do any favors for the already dicey race relations on that campus. Doubt it changed any "hearts and minds".

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Black and White. Good and Evil. The list goes on and on. I suspect that the oversimplification of religious texts, twitter sized histories and differing senses of fairness have something to do with this. Personally I find this a very exciting time for history and how it is written. I have learned a tremendous amount over the last five year alone. The newer narratives lend a richness to American History that I did get as a young man. I can see how flag waving Americans would hate anything that interrupts the illusion and would make them reconsider. Insecurities and mental illness in people’s personal lives spill over to the public sphere. People are all things and so is history and histories are made up of people who encompass all things good and not good. I for one embrace it.

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I do understand how simple narratives can be very comforting, too. Wouldn't it be nice if we could clearly identify good people and evil people and love the one and despise the other? Too bad history gives us no such comfort. One of the reasons we on the left are struggling to attract people who don't want to think too hard is that the truth is complex and the Rs are peddling a simple and easily-understood, though entirely false, narrative.

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That's why we have movies and why (with a couple of rare exceptions) one should never think they have "learned" history from watching one.

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Makes sense, except Gallup said pride polling dropped 9% amongst Republicans when Trump became president.

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I once wrote an essay last century deriding the bumper stickers "Proud to be An American."

In St. Louis high school 1962, I protested saying the pledge of allegiance to the flag every morning (under god) was my complaint. Surprisingly, no one tried to force it on me (A 1940 Supreme Court decision said they could not.) However, backwater schools were still trying to enforce patriotism, and a few brave students challenged it, so I made a more realistic pledge. That was 2002, this is the updated when DADT & DOMA were defeated in 2011 & 2015. When they remove that divisive "under god" I may recite it again.

Questions of Allegiance

Rob Boyte

June 26, 2015

Why pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, or to the Republic for which it stands, that allowed slavery until 1863, denied women the vote until 1920, segregated its armed forces by race until 1948, persecuted political minorities throughout the 1950s, and into the 21st Century still denied full rights to homosexuals to serve in its military until 2011 or to reap the benefits of marriage until 2015?

One nation, indivisible would not disfranchise its Atheists, Agnostics, Humanists or others who do not accept the archaic concept of a "god" by forcing them to read "in god we trust" on every coin of a supposed secular state. "We" do not all agree that ours is a nation "under god" and for the religious majority to assume such is a most divisive insult.

With Liberty and Justice for all, except of course those too poor to afford a slick lawyer in the court system, too black to be presumed innocent by the police or too in love with someone of the same gender.

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I would expect American Pride to falter. As a privileged and formerly very patriotic white male I have lost pride in this stumbling country. Feel shame for being a white male amongst so many racist, ignorant hiders of the truth.

Semper Fi.

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You can always tell a Marine (you just can't tell him very much) :-)

I suspect the reason you now say this and the reason you end as you do are the same.

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Perhaps low pride is proof of an American awakening. In any case, "pride" is an interesting concept.

Google tells me, "Pride is a positive emotional response or attitude to something with an intimate connection to oneself, due to its perceived value. This may be one's own abilities or achievements, positive characteristics of friends or family, or one's country." It is derived, however (still according to Google), from the Late Old English "pryde", meaning "excessive self-esteem".

So, while pride may be a positive emotion, a normal feeling common to all people at one time or another when justified by circumstances, clearly there is a point at which pride can become excessive, especially when there is insufficient circumstantial justification. So I am proud when my risotto ai carciofi is up to my Italian wife's high culinary standards, while she is proud when she is able to beat me at backgammon, a game I have played - even with strangers for money - since I was a child, while she played it for the first time when we were first locked down by the pandemic 14 months ago.

But, should my wife be so proud of all the amazingly good Italian food she is able to cook that she dismisses me as a "burger-eater", or should I be so proud of my backgammon abilities that I dismiss her (occasional!) victory as "pure luck, my dear, you'd be nowhere without double sixes"? Pride may be a pleasurable, hard-to-hide emotion, natural and even inevitable in all of us, but when we express it with more than a faint smile it tends to irritate those around us. Natural self-esteem, when even slightly excessive, can become irritating in a big way. Like most good things, there is a limit.

If I had gone to war to fight the Nazis and done my duty to the utmost and survived to tell the tale, would I be entitled to feel proud about that? Sure. If students, after much study and worry and missed social occasions, ace their organic chemistry exam, do they have a right to feel proud? Of course. But if I'm watching the US Olympic Men's basketball team wipe up the court with some other nation's Olympic team, should I jump up (spilling beer all over myself) and begin screaming "USA! USA! We're number 1!"? No, I shouldn't, not unless my brother is Steph Curry or LeBron James.

To sum up, there is the pride of Democrats (faint smile, "Good job, Joe Biden.") And there is GOP pride (raised AR-15, "America, Love it or Leave it!).

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JR, do you think that in addition to the Trump Effect, the Pandemic Effect figured into Gallup's poll reflecting American's pride in country? Life was as lousy at it gets in the USA and there were so many deaths. Trump and the Pandemic are inextricably tied - how can you separate the two?

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The decline in pride numbers started in 2017. By the time the pandemicbegan it had dropped 20 points.

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Many Canadians view America as a country brimming with self-confidence that would easily swell to arrogance at propitious moments (eg the Dream Team of NBA stars at the Olympics in Atlanta), expressed in the insufferable USA, USA, USA chants.

There was a periodically renewed debate within our country as to whether we were too self-effacing and would do well to adopt at least some of the attitude Americans had to their country.

We did adopt a more “take no prisoners” style in our government-initiated “Own the Podium” movement which aimed to support (and harden) our Olympic hopefuls.

And there was an *enormously* successful beer commercial - I’m a Canadian (https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=WMxGVfk09lU) which brilliantly captured our aspirations.

But, by and large, we felt it futile to adopt the brash American attitude. It seemed to suit you - it wouldn’t us.

Then came 9/11.

When the dust settled, so to speak, we saw a new America. It was (or so it seemed to us, much less confident. The swagger was gone. There was a seeming national introspection - a moment in which Americans felt their bubble had been burst, their invulnerability pierced.

We saw Americans respond by going to war in two countries, that is true. But America seemed subdued and chastened, less sure of its ability to bestride the world like some unthinking Colossus.

Many of us would date American loss of confidence to 2001, not 2017 as has been suggested, maybe verified by studies.

The 21st century has been and continues to be a time of deep reckoning and hard questions for America about itself. Out of that has come a fierce struggle for the soul of the country - a quixotic quest, it seems to me. There are too many America’s for one soul to harbour.

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I appreciate your thoughtful analysis. From what I’ve seen, American confidence (not quite the same thing as pride) on the international stage has ebbed and flowed over the past 60 years. Viet Nam seriously dented America’s confidence, followed by the double whammy of the OPEC oil embargoes. Confidence sprang back under Reagan, re-enforced by the falling of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of the Soviet Union. It remained strong through the Clinton years, and actually rose after 2001, as America felt an outpouring of support from around the world. If anything, after 2001, America was overconfident. Dubyah’s arrogant neocons proclaimed (as they set out to invade Iraq and Afghanistan), “we don’t need to study history, we make history”. That didn’t turn out so well. Confidence (and pride) were strong during the Obama years. Then, it fell considerably during Trump’s presidency, for (I think) two reasons. One is that many of us were ashamed that such an unfit man could become president. Trump was an embarrassment to us. The other is that Trump’s rhetoric painted the world with fear - proposing that we cower behind walls and withdraw from the world, instead of continuing to lead by action and example. Trump’s vision, what little there was of it, was small and bitter. Nothing to instill confidence or pride.

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I love this comment. I suppose that there could be reliable tracking by polls which illustrate your thesis. At an intellectual level, it makes tremendous sense to me.

I would put in two further comments to ponder.

The first is that 9/11 was an incredibly successful attack on American soil, considerably more impactful than the difficult periods - Vietnam, the OPEC crises, the Trump era - that you explained.

9/11 was a terrorism event that was shock and awe in a way the world had never seen (in terrorism). It came as a complete surprise - to ordinary Americans. It was televised live in unsparing detail - who can unsee people jumping out of skyscrapers? And the enemy was to most people, relatively unknown for some time.

If they could pull off that, why could they not blow up 10 Walmarts at exactly the same moment a month or two later. The attackers showed power and daring. Who knew what they were capable of?

Then followed the futility of two wars, the creation of the Dept. of Homeland Security, the daily humiliations at airports when we went to travel again.

Du ta was arrogant but Americans soon learned how stupid his response was - and how all sympathy was squandered in pursuing bin Laden and al Qaeda. On a macro scale it just kept worse and worse.

The second point I’d make is this. In Vietnam Americans learned slowly and painfully that they could lose a war. That was a new thing. And it certainly must have drained away confidence.

But the nation was far, far stronger then than it was in 2001. The pillars of any society, rock solid community organizations were virtually fully intact. People went to mainstream churches in high numbers. Schools were trusted. The government was seen as a force for good, although less so as Vietnam dragged on. Family units were stronger. The service club ethos was a binding force (Kiwanis, Lions Club etc). The Boy Scout organization was at the height of its influence. The union movement was at its apex. And so on.

For many reasons middle class Americans believed in the concept of America. On the other hand 9/11 came at a time when America seemed to be crumbling internally.

Despite your very persuasive points, I still cling to my belief that the 21st century has been one bad year after another for Americans. I do not think confidence suddenly eroded in 2017.

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Okay, don’t believe it. Your feelings outweigh the data.

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You are right. What a drop! Wouldn't you like to see that broken down, for instance, Republicans, Democrats, Independents, educational levels, race, class, ethnology, etc.?

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One of the things that immediately harmed my patriotism was the use of the flag, the red white and blue, and some pretty awesome patriotic songs to push white supremacy. Add to that the president's and the GOP's insistence that I believe all the lies, distortions, and gaslighting. I immediately stepped aside.

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Excellent point JR.

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Hey - Remember when Gallup claimed DJT was most admired?

🤮

I question their “findings”

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I recall in Eighth Grade Colorado History (the "official" course) reading about what was then called "the Battle of Sand Creek," in which the valorous white people fought the dastardly Inidans and managed to kill many of them with few losses to the valorous white people. When I raised my hand and said from my reading of battles (I at the time had a College Freshman reading level and was already reading history books for recreation) it sounded like a massacre, I was once again sent to "polish the bench" in the Assistant Principal's Office (I did a lot of bench-polishing back then, which I didn't mind at all since they didn't seem to mind me bringing a book along to read - I don't think I got a report card in 12 years of public miseducation that didn't include "does not respond to properly constituted authority.")

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The son of an acquaintance, years back, wrote a well research highschool paper on the War of 1812-1814 from the perspective of the First Nations who were the true losers of the war. Canada won as we kept the Americans out; the Americans won as they freed up the mid west from British control to settlement. Only the indigenous lost. He got a failing grade but his dad was so proud of him

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Thanks Allen. Hingston from Kingston, by any chance?

"The French and Indian War," or, as it's called in Canada, The British and Indian War.

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French colonials versus English colonials, each recruiting Indigenous allies in quest of supremacy over the revenue-producing resources of the land (e.g. beaver skins, tobacco) for profits of the corporate investors on behalf of the sovereigns of France and England.

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Yes but the French wanted to work with the locals through "comptoirs" and create trade whilst the English were there to stay "en masse" and eliminate the middlemen.

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Yes, the French went for assimilate, the English more for annihilate, or at least for apartheid. A coureur des bois ("runner of the woods") was a French-Canadian trapper and/or trader with First Nations peoples. Some married Indigenous women and made Métis families and communities in the outback. So the practices vis-à-vis the middlewomen were very different, though Métis were subjected to racist persecution. Oh right, the English won the Battle of the Plains of Abraham and turned New France into Canada!

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The French and Indian war was 50 years earlier than the War of 1812-1814

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Indeed, but does the War of 1812 have another name in Canada? If so, I'd highlight that contrasting viewpoint too.

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No. That is how it is known in Canada. Is it the same in USA?

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From this era of and up to, read: Tecumseh, A Sorrow in My Heart -Alan Eckert

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Good on his dad!

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The Sand Creek Massacre should be taught in every history curriculum, (as should the Ludlow Massacre).

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The good news is, Colorado History books in school now teach it as the Sand Creek Massacre and the site is listed as such with explanatory material.

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Good show, Daria. Thousands of readers will now scramble to look up "Ludlow Massacre," one of the worst incidents in America's labor wars.

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And here you are today, TC, for which I am seriously grateful. Really!

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Somehow I am not surprised....

That is intended as a compliment of the highest order.

Signed, "who never lives up to her potential"

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Ditto! Speakers of truth to authority are generally frowned upon.

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That sounds like a great opening scene ... very engaging.

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Good for you!

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I Love you TC!!!! I had a Good chuckle reading your last sentence🤣I NEEDED that❣

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And oh how polished those benches were!

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Sometimes I wonder just for a second whether I'm reading The Onion, as it seems incredible what the Republicans are attempting to do in our country, in reframing history. The gaslighting continues even without 45 "reigning." Every morning I wake up grateful for our current leadership in the White House, but our work continues at the state level.

Thanks, Dr Heather 💜 Rest well.

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Unfortunately, it's not just Republicans.

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As an author of non-academic nonfiction history, I have found in my own research that most "official history" is mythology at best and bullshit normally. Governmental bodies involved with keeping the official record to this day are busy cooking the books and stuffing that which they find inconvenient down what Orwell called "the memory hole."

In my history of naval aviation in the Korean War, I featured the accurate account of an air battle between a Navy pilot and Russian-flown aircraft that from the day it happened the Navy claimed never happened, due originally to their desire to hide from the Soviets the fact that the then-new No Such Agency (as the NSA is known to those of us who research it); the cover was "blown" back in 1992 when the Russians published the names of the four pilots who were killed in the fight. When I did my original research, I went to the Naval History & Heritage Command site, where I downloaded every Monthly Report of every aircraft carrier that was in the war (Monthly Reports are the basic place to start, since each covers everything that happens on a ship in a given month; they're goldmines of information). One of them was the November 1952 Monthly Report of USS Oriskany, where the Navy's cover story of the incident was done in detail. Before the book came out, i contacted NHHC and told them it was coming and asked if they were interested in revising their history to conform to the actual facts. They replied that "official history can only be changed by the sworn testimony of two US participants in the event, verified by subsequent research of the record." A year after the book came out, I was contacted by one of the retired admirals I interviewed, and was told he was unable to find the report up at the NHHC site. I went there and indeed, there was one monthly report missing from all the others - that one. It has been replaced by the Air Group Report, a far less-detailed document that has the cover story in outline only. I again contacted NHHC and they replied that "unfortunately, not all documents survive to be included in our records, and we have used the best available documentation." I replied "Well, since you're missing this report, I'm attaching a copy of my copy of this missing report that I downloaded from your side three years ago" and attached a digital copy to the e-mail. They have yet to respond.

When I wrote my most recent book, about naval aviation in Vietnam, I started with the (alleged) Tonkin Gulf (non) Incident, which I personally know was a bullshit story as an actual participant and from interviews with other participants over the years. The "official lie" that was used to take us into the War of Lies, the "Ur Lie" of the war as I have called it, was first debunked in the Pentagon Papers by the government itself 50 years ago. I came across verified research done in 2006 that found that the "lights in the water" reported as "North Vietnamese torpedo boats " was the reflection of lightning and moonlight on an enormous school of flying fish that annually transits the Gulf of Tonkin at that time, which was not known at the time. It turns out that the only guy who "got it right" was LBJ who exclaimed on being first informed of the event, "Those poor dumb sailors were probably shooting at flying fish." Yet if you go to that waste of electrons known as the Vietnam Fifty Project, which celebrates the valiant efforts of Americans in that war (!), you will find them STILL telling the Ur Lie of the War of Lies. The guy running that bullshit operation doesn't like me after i posted my chapter on the site (which not-so-mysteriously "failed to post" within 24 hours)

I could go on. The "facts" most people know about "the forgotten war" in Korea have turned out in the light of actual research to be what I called in an interview "wartime propaganda that has fossilized over 70 years into fact-like material that is the historical equivalent of coprolites."

Quite frankly, anyone who believes what I call "American Official Mythology" put out by the US government on any topic probably also believes in the Easter Bunny, Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy and that the sun will rise in the west tomorrow. Another term one can now use is "Republican History." It's as factual as "Republican Justice."

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One studying the history of WW II would do well to keep in mind that, as I understand it, every news report went through military authority before being submitted for publication. There were no imbedded journalists reporting directly to their editors. Nothing got published without first being cleared and, if necessary, scrubbed of inconvenient facts, by military authorities.

It is probably just coincidence that the history of US military adventures hasn't been as rosy since the military can no longer control the flow of information.

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Putin has clamped down hard on anyone who dares contradict his approved official history, especially of WWII. He doesn't want Russians to think about how much the USSR contributed to Hitler's initial conduct of the war or how Russians in Nazi held territory were just as cooperative with them in exterminating the Jews in their communities or how Stalin's paranoia as a leader led to the unnecessary deaths of millions of Soviet soldiers and civilians.

Every country produces official white washed versions of history and people like you are necessary to combat it so we know the truth. Thank you.

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Don’t forget Stalin’s worst sin, according to Senator Blackburn(TN-R): free child-care.

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Ah, yes. The Soviets "tore the children away from their mothers and forced them to go to work". Sounds like capitalism. The mothers are forced to work and care of the children is not the problem of the capitalists

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Putin is also enraged that it is public knowledge that he and most of his fellow oligarchs lives such lavish lives and are billionaires while Russian citizens struggle so badly. Some knowledge doesn't benefit his keeping his citizens controlled.

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Have you seen Navalney's documentary about Putin's Palace?

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I haven't seen it, but it was that of which I was referring. Ouch for Putin and oligarchy friends.

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Yes, they all did, all through history. But we have a chance. Let’s take it.

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TCin:

Just a thought, do you think those "dumb" enlisted sailors arbitrarily opened up on the "flying fish?" Perhaps, they were ordered to do so? To your point on the "flying fish:

Night of August 4: "The Maddox and Turner Joy moved out to sea, but both reported that they were tracking multiple unidentified vessels approaching their positions. The vessels appeared to be coming from several different directions, and they were impossible to lock onto. Both ships began firing at what they thought were torpedo boats, and