1619 - an Eventful Year for America


In 2019, the New York Times 1619 Project provoked choruses of indignation normally reserved for desecration of Confederate flags and monuments. Many southern and sympathetic states rushed to pass laws forbidding the teaching of "critical race theory", which most legislators couldn't define accurately.

What they meant was any truthful telling of the role of America's original sin - slavery - and its progeny - segregation and voter suppression - in America's history. It's a reactionary technique for appealing to conscious and unconscious racist voters by pretending that they are not the racists. That's to help educated middle-class suburban voters feel comfortable voting for a party that welcomes white supremacists among its most enthusiastic members.

So what was the 1619 Project thesis anyway? That in a very fundamental way, American history started in 1619 rather than 1607 or 1620 or 1776 or 1789. The reactionaries reacted as if such an idea were unheard of and treasonous. But where had they been? The fundamental 1619 idea was in the 7th grade Virginia history books used in 1960, and amplified by civil rights activists in the same decade. Take a look and draw your own conclusions!

Read more about the New York Times 1619 Project -



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