Donald Trump’s presidency and reelection bid has always been geared to his base and his base alone. I wish I could say I’m shocked at the percentage of people that sign on to his racism, misogyny, and ignorance. Still, the comments section on far too many Internet posts is proof they exist. Donald has upped his game in proposing America’s schools teach “patriotic education.”
“Left-wing rioting and mayhem are the direct results of decades of left-wing indoctrination in our schools.”
Trump wants our schools to teach a “pro-American curriculum,” and says, “our heroes will never be forgotten.”
“Our youth will be taught to love America!”
In his September 17th speech at the National Archives, he goes on to announce a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to support a “pro-American curriculum that celebrates the truth about our nation’s great history.” He said he would create a “1776 Commission” to “restore patriotic education to our schools.” He’d leave out all the bad parts to counter what he claims is the narrative that “America is a wicked and racist nation.”
Trump would whitewash the nation’s history, much as he has attempted to erase his own family history, including that his grandfather Friedrich Trump was a pimp. His father was arrested at a Klan riot against police and his infidelities with a porn star and playboy model.
“He was never arrested. He has nothing to do with this. This never happened. This is nonsense, and it never happened. This never happened. Never took place. He was never arrested, never convicted, never even charged. It’s a completely false, ridiculous story. He was never there! It never happened. Never took place.”
The ridiculous part about Trump’s plan to rewrite history is the assumption it hasn’t been going on already. Rarely if ever, do America’s textbooks talk about the forcible rape of slaves to sell the offspring for profit.
Trump’s modern-day Muslim ban doesn’t rank compared to the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act that banned almost all Chinese immigrants for six decades. In Texas, where it took place, what do they teach about the Slocum Massacre?” How in-depth do they cover the Trail of Tears? Have you read the story of Isaac Woodard?
Trump wants our schools to put a positive spin on American history. Texas school districts have beat him to the punch, already teaching American Exceptionalism, a theory that America is greater than any other nation because white. Because of the size and influence of Texas. Many other states have utilized the same books, spreading xenophobia and misinformation.
Manifest Destiny, the concept that drove American expansion westward to the Pacific ocean, is based on the theory that God his/herself declared all land west to the Pacific and beyond was the province of the white man. South Carolina Senator John C. Calhoun said it more clearly in the Senate’s halls when offering his rationale not to annex all of Mexico.
“We have never dreamt of incorporating into our Union any but the Caucasian race the free white race. To incorporate Mexico would be the very first instance of the kind of incorporating an Indian race; for more than half of the Mexicans are Indians, and the other is composed chiefly of mixed tribes. I protest against such a union as that! Ours, sir, is the Government of a white race. The great misfortunes of Spanish America are to be traced to the fatal error of placing these colored races on an equality with the white race….”
Trump would have us only say good things about the founders, who enshrined slavery into the Constitution without mentioning it. They brought us the Electoral College and Article 1, Section 9: Clause 1, to protect slavery from repeal by voters. Not that the only people eligible to vote, land-owning white men were so inclined.
Trump doesn’t wish America to be thought of as a “wicked and racist nation.” His way is to eradicate any mention of the wicked and racist actions of the past. At the same time, he perpetuates them in the present. Separating brown children from their parents, possibly permanently, certainly qualifies.
Trump’s call for changing history cannot be implemented by the federal government. State and local governments have direct control over what gets taught in their schools. The grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities is funded for less than $300,000 and probably won’t have much impact.
What I wonder is, who are the people Trump hoped to excite with his blatant racism and lies? Who are his advisors that believe this plan is a good idea? This plan is worthy of one originating in a dictatorship. Under Trump, given the failure of Congress to do its job, perhaps that is what we have become?
Writer, poet, wannabe philosopher. I write about politics, history, race, and social justice. Support me at https://ko-fi.com/williamfspivey0680
Previously Published on Medium