History is controversial because storytelling is powerful.
President Joe Biden brought eloquent leadership this month to a national commemoration of the 100th anniversary of a massacre in Tulsa, Oklahoma. In 1921 hundreds of black men, women and children were murdered and a thriving community was destroyed by a unique racial mass murder.
These murders took place when the Ku Klux Klan was resurrected, inspired by the vehemently racist film of 1915 Birth of a nationpromoting the false, pro-Confederate Lost Cause version of the history of slavery and civil war.
Until a few years ago, the Tulsa massacre was largely hidden from history. The truth has been systematically hushed up by officials, the news media and textbooks, deliberately erased from our collective memories.
It would be tempting to believe that a cover-up of this magnitude is no longer possible today. But we may be on the verge of an even bigger historical cover-up. Republican lawmakers in conditions to like Texas, Iowa, and Ohio, spurred on by right-wing cable television and social media personalities, seek to ban honest teaching about the racist violence in our history and the structural racism that harms blacks and other colored people today. Republicans are in Congress To move Limit the discussion of racism in the training of the military and the federal government.
The right-wing alarmism to openly address racism is the version of this election cycle of the war against “political correctness” waged by the right-wing media and former President Donald Trump. It’s a rhetorical strategy with a partisan purpose. It aims to convince a section of white voters that they should fear and fight our emerging multiracial and multiethnic democratic society. It is designed to help right-wing extremist politicians take over and hold power, regardless of the cost to our democracy.