The above leaflet advertised Negro History Week during February of 1944. It shows part of an iconic John Trumbull painting of the Battle of Bunker Hill. The man with the musket to the right is Peter Salem, an enslaved black American who is credited with killing the British commander, Major John Pitcairn, during the battle.
Special “Black History” programs were once very much needed. They were so successful for fifty years that they have not been needed since the 1970’s. So why is it being taught more today than ever before?
President Abraham Lincoln is depicted in the upper left of this poster for Negro History Week in 1950. Frederick Douglass, a slave who taught himself to read and write before escaping to become a leader in the campaign against slavery is shown in the lower right. Lincoln’s birthday was February 12. As a slave, Douglass never knew the day he was born. However, he chose to celebrate February 14 as his birthday.
”Black History Month” began as “Negro History Week” in the 1920’s. Schools that were already celebrating the birthdays of President Abraham Lincoln and black civil rights leader Frederick Douglass used that week in February to tell the stories of successful and respected black Americans since the days of George Washington.
This was needed because a Hollywood movie called “Birth of a Nation” had just poisoned American culture with the most hateful and ugly lies about blacks. That 1915 movie helped “progressive” President Woodrow Wilson and other Democrats win close elections in 1916. It energized racist white Southern Democrats and revived the long dead KKK to terrorize and even kill blacks who tried to vote. (Most blacks then voted Republican.)
“Birth of a Nation” made lies about blacks believable by presenting them as very clever and deceptive fake history. It did this with authentic settings, brilliant cinematic techniques, and numerous quotes by then President Woodrow Wilson. Wilson, a Democrat, had previously been a history professor at Princeton University in New Jersey. There, he wrote a biased, pro-Confederate, anti-black, and anti-Republican history book about Reconstruction after the Civil War.
“Birth of a Nation” persuaded millions of white immigrants and other Americans who had never met a black person, to hate and fear blacks overnight. That so impressed Josef Goebbels in Germany, that he later used “Birth of a Nation” as a model for making movies promoting the hatred of Jews when he became the Nazi minister of propaganda in 1933.
Republicans promised a “Return To Normalcy” when they campaigned to unseat Democrats in the 1920 elections. When Republicans won with a landslide, they worked with blacks to refute the racist lies of “Birth of a Nation”, the KKK, and racist white Democrats.
For the next fifty years, “Black History” programs taught the remarkable true story of how American blacks became responsible, self-sufficient citizens soon after being freed from slavery. Blacks who had been forbidden by law from being taught to read as slaves, quickly learned to read and write better than most poor whites around them. Millions took part in the “Great Migration” out of the South to enjoy good jobs, homes, and schools in the North. Many, like Booker T. Washington George Washington Carver, and Atlantic City’s Sara Spencer Washington achieved spectacular success.
It took years of teaching this true Black History, plus fighting World War II against the racism of Germany and Japan, to end most prejudice against blacks and integrate them into the mainstream of American life. By the 1950’s, racist attitudes by whites against blacks were quickly disappearing outside the South. By the 1970’s, that change was happening in the South as well,
Today, virtually every American understands and condemns the evil of almost 250 years of slavery in the 15 slave states of the South. Almost every American now agrees that blacks can and do succeed in every field when given equal opportunities. Almost every American now recognizes and admires the achievements of great black Americans. What was taught as “Black History” a hundred years ago is now recognized as an important part of American history. So why are their more special “Black History” programs now than ever before?
The short answer is that most of what is today taught as “Black History” is deceptive political propaganda. It systematically exaggerates minor, isolated events while completely ignoring highly significant ones to promote a particular a socialist, anti-American political agenda.
Today’s “Black History” rarely mentions the heroism of thousands of whites who blocked the expansion of slavery for twenty years before the Civil War. It rarely mentions how whites in the North crippled the slave economy in Delaware, Maryland, Kentucky and Missouri” by helping thousands of slaves, then valuable property, escape through the “Underground Railroad”. It rarely mentions that Bible-based white Christians were the backbone of efforts to end slavery in America. Or that 310,000 of them died in that effort. Most “Black History” ignores the success and achievements of most blacks who moved out of the Jim Crow South during the Great Migration between 1870 and 1930. It gives the false impression that the Jim Crow racism of the South was typical of the rest of America.
However, the greatest evil of today’s “Black History” is falsely teaching that only blacks suffered from discrimination and insults in America. Almost every American since Benjamin Franklin and George Washington had to deal with them. The term “Yankee Doodle” began as an ethnic slur used by the British to insult all Americans!
America is a nation of humans, not angels. As in any county, new arrivals always faced some prejudice and mistreatment. Farmers (“hayseeds” or “hillbillies”), Scots, Irish, Germans, Poles, Jews, women, Chinese, Japanese, Mexicans, Cubans, Vietnamese were insulted and mistreated in some way when they first arrived. America’s greatness was that our laws, Constitution and culture allowed victims of that discrimination to succeed in spite of it.
Those who teach “Black History” today no longer want blacks to succeed through their own work and achievement. They instead want blacks to remain dependent on government and the Democratic Party politicians who run it.
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Seth Grossman, Executive Director