Closing Thought–23Sep20

We all know about the so-called stim plans that the government has put forward to help the nation survive the pandemic.

Of course the Wall Streeters made out the best from the different plans….now news has come out that the Pentagon got stim cash to help fight the virus in the military….instead they do what they do best…pissed it away.

Back in March, Congress gave the Pentagon $1 billion to combat coronavirus and build up the country’s medical supplies. But instead, the Pentagon diverted most of the money to defense contractors to make things like jet engine parts, body armor, uniforms, and other military equipment.

The money was part of the Cares Act, a $2.2 trillion coronavirus relief bill. It was allocated to the Pentagon under the Defense Production Act, which allows the president to direct companies to manufacture certain products.

The funds were given to the Pentagon to “prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus.” The Washington Post reported that shortly after the stimulus was passed, the Pentagon began funneling hundreds of millions of dollars to defense contractors.

Some of the awards the Pentagon handed out were disclosed by the Post. $183 million went to companies including Rolls Royce and ArcelorMittal to maintain shipbuilding. $80 million went to a Kansas aircraft parts business, tens of millions went towards satellite, drone, and space surveillance technology, and $2 million went to a domestic manufacturer of US Army uniforms.

Some companies that accepted this hand out from the Pentagon also received money from another bailout fund, the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). The Post found that at least 10 of the 30 companies that received money from the Pentagon also received PPP money.

Portions of the money were dolled out to smaller firms, including a group of companies that work on drone technology. But larger firms also received bailout money, like GE Aviation, a subsidiary of General Electric, that received $75 million in June.

(antiwar.com)

More reading…..https://www.military.com/daily-news/2020/09/22/2-million-funds-earmarked-covid-19-went-buy-army-greens-uniforms.html

The Pentagon should have the money returned from their budget……and then the generals making the decisions should be jailed for misappropriation of funds.

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“lego ergo scribo”

Proslavery Constitutionalism

This is where the history of the US gets a bit confusing……can you have an antislavery constitution and proslavery constitutionalism? Or how about the reverse?

Let’s look at these historic conundrum……

Historians today speak of the “proslavery Constitution” and “antislavery constitutionalism”; they almost never speak of the “antislavery Constitution” or of “proslavery constitutionalism.” This fact is a testament to the profound success of the critique of the Constitution leveled by abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison. In his condemnation of the Constitution as proslavery, his resort to Madison’s “Notes from the Constitutional Convention” to demonstrate this case, and his rejection of the Constitution’s authority—all punctuated by his dramatic burning of that document during a Fourth of July address—Garrison has set the terms within which subsequent historical debate on the relationship between the Constitution and slavery has been carried out.

Even historians who disdain Garrison’s caustic critique of the Constitution, who question his partial readings of the Convention’s debates, and who emphasize the development of constitutional arguments that culminated in the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and Fifteenth Amendments concede at some level Garrison’s premise that the Constitution was intended to be proslavery. Thus, it is sad, but not surprising, to see that the mob rounded up by the New York Times’s “1619 Project” is setting fire to the project of antislavery constitutionalism. Garrison’s belief that the Constitution was intended to be proslavery is an unquenchable fire that will eventually consume all it touches.

The Legend of the Proslavery Constitution

For more information on Garrison……https://www.ushistory.org/us/28a.asp

Here is a look at pro slavery in the early Republic……from the perspective of Univ. of Virginia……

According to the standard view of Southern history, there was a strong antislavery tradition in the South until the 1830’s when the militant abolitionist attacks upon not only slavery but also slaveholders forced Southerners into a defense of their peculiar institution. This view over­ looks, however, the strong proslavery tradition that also existed in the South from 1790 to 1830. This study is an attempt to re-examine this period and consider the proslavery arguments that did exist in the early United States.

Examining sources primarily from the public forum, such as speeches, newspaper articles, and pamphlets, this study focuses upon the proslavery positions presented in the early republic. It looks at not only the actual statements but also the rationale behind them. The defenses used ranged from Biblical sanction and historical precedent to “scientific” evidence, from constitutionalism and economics to social considerations and racism. In each instance, proslavery advocates justified the institution of black slavery, and the way of life based on it, as not only necessary but also beneficial for both whites and blacks.

https://libraetd.lib.virginia.edu/public_view/g445cd210

If you like reading about early American history then may I suggest this book…it is an interesting read…..https://d3p9z3cj392tgc.cloudfront.net/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/09162520/9781501726446.pdf

Further reading……

https://www.nationalreview.com/magazine/2019/09/30/the-anti-slavery-constitution/

Slavery is a terrible point in our history and to have a complete conversation we need to have all the facts and thoughts….and the ultra-conserv Heritage Foundation tries to explain the Constitution and slavery…..

While all today recognize this momentous accomplishment, many remain confused about the status of slavery under the original Constitution. Textbooks and history books routinely dismiss the Constitution as racist and pro-slavery. The New York Times, among others, continues to casually assert that the Constitution affirmed African-Americans to be worth only three-fifths of a human being.

Ironically, many Americans who are resolutely opposed to racism unwittingly agree with Chief Justice Roger Taney’s claim in Dred Scott v. Sandford (1857) that the Founders’ Constitution regarded blacks as “so far inferior that they had no rights which the white man was bound to respect, and that the negro might justly and lawfully be reduced to slavery for his benefit.” In this view, the worst Supreme Court case decision in American history was actually correctly decided.

read more and you decide……

https://www.heritage.org/the-constitution/commentary/what-the-constitution-really-says-about-race-and-slavery

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Battling Histories

First it was the so-called liberals that started an educational program called the 1619 Project…..and as you would think I wrote about it…..https://gulfsouthfreepress.wordpress.com/2020/08/30/that-1619-project/

Not to be out done by the “liberals” the fascists have talked Donald the Orange into a more racially inspired educational program….it will be called the 1776 Commission.

President Trump says he’ll sign an executive order to “promote patriotic education” after bashing a New York Times project investigating how the the legacy of slavery impacts Black Americans as “toxic propaganda.” In what the AP sees as “a defense of white culture,” Trump on Thursday painted the 1619 Project—named after the year in which the first slaves arrived in Virginia—as “ideological poison that if not removed will dissolve the civic bonds that tie us together. It will destroy our country.” The Pulitzer Prize-winning project, which now offers curriculum for schools, teaches that “we were founded on the principle of oppression, not freedom. Nothing could be further from the truth,” the president said during the White House Conference on American History, per Axios.

He said America’s founding had led to the abolition of slavery and “the most fair, equal, and prosperous nation in human history.” Trump said the 1776 Commission that will be launched as a result of his executive order will encourage educators to teach “the miracle of American history,” per Politico. 1619 Project founder Nikole Hannah-Jones’ response: The attempts “to censor a work of American journalism” and dictate what children “should and should not learn should be deeply alarming to all Americans who value free speech.” Elsewhere, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos praised the 1776 Unites curriculum, launched this week by the group 1776 Unites as a direct response to the 1619 Project. The group says its curriculum offers “a more complete and inspiring story of the history of African-Americans” in the US.

As usual a service for those afflicted with an allergy to reading….a short video…..

During his presser he once again attacked teachers/professors as somehow agents of evil…..and I , as you would think, wrote about this type of thinking by the fascists in the GOP…..https://lobotero.com/2020/02/22/those-damn-liberal-professors/

A side note here….I will stop referring to them as ‘fascists’ when they refrain from labeling anyone that does not agree with them as a “socialist”…..until then my labels remain.

You know those “dog whistles” that Trump throws out for his supporters?  It is racism plain and simple!

President Donald Trump’s rhetoric is often referred to as “dog whistle politics.”

In politician speak, a dog whistle is language that conveys a particular meaning to a group of potential supporters. The targeted group hears the “whistle” because of its shared cultural reference, but others cannot.

In 2018, The Washington Post wrote that “perhaps no one has sent more dog whistles than President Trump.”

https://theconversation.com/trumps-appeals-to-white-anxiety-are-not-dog-whistles-theyre-racism-146070

Why does this rhetoric appeal to these people?

There’s no gentle way to put it: People who give in to racism and prejudice may simply be dumb, according to a new study that is bound to stir public controversy.

The research finds that children with low intelligence are more likely to hold prejudiced attitudes as adults. These findings point to a vicious cycle, according to lead researcher Gordon Hodson, a psychologist at Brock University in Ontario. Low-intelligence adults tend to gravitate toward socially conservative ideologies, the study found. Those ideologies, in turn, stress hierarchy and resistance to change, attitudes that can contribute to prejudice, Hodson wrote in an email to LiveScience.

“Prejudice is extremely complex and multifaceted, making it critical that any factors contributing to bias are uncovered and understood,” he said.

https://www.livescience.com/18132-intelligence-social-conservatism-racism.html

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“lego ergo scribo”

Who’s Who For SCOTUS

By now the country knows and is in mourning for Judge Ginsberg…..that means that the conservs are rubbing their hands in anticipation of putting another conserv on the highest court in the land.

I have heard two names that gives me shudders….Ted Cruz (who says he does not want it) and Tom Cotton that warmonger from Arkansas…..but believe it or not there are other names in the hunt for the replacement….and these are…..

The full list of Trump’s additional picks is as follows:

Bridget Bade of Arizona, judge on the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
Daniel Cameron of Kentucky, that state’s attorney general
Paul Clement of Virginia, former U.S. solicitor general
Sen. Tom Cotton of Arkansas
Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas
Stuart Kyle Duncan of Louisiana, judge on the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
Steven Engel of the District of Columbia, assistant attorney general for the Office of Legal Counsel at the Department of Justice
Noel Francisco, former U.S. solicitor general
Sen. Josh Hawley of Missouri
James Ho of Texas, judge on the 5th Circuit
Gregory Katsas of Virginia, judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
Barbara Lagoa, a judge from Florida on the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals

Christopher Landau of Maryland, U.S. ambassador to Mexico
Carlos Muñiz of Florida, justice on the Florida Supreme Court
Martha Pacold of Illinois, judge of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
Peter Phipps of Pennsylvania, judge on the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
Sarah Pitlyk of Missouri, judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri
Allison Jones Rushing of North Carolina, judge on the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
Kate Todd of Virginia, deputy assistant to the president and deputy counsel to the president
Lawrence VanDyke of Nevada, judge on the 9th Circuit

An extensive list indeed…..but is there a short list?  (Of course there is for Donald cannot concentrate long enough to read that long list)

The line to succeed the late Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court likely starts with these federal appeals court judges:

Amy Coney Barrett 

Read On……https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2020/09/18/replacing-ruth-bader-ginsburg-list-starts-amy-coney-barrett/2669382002/

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Closing Thought–18Sep20

50 years ago today….the music truly ceased.

Today is the 50th anniversary of the death of rock legend Jimi Hendrix….

Hendrix was born in Seattle in 1942, and was raised mainly by his father Al, since his mother struggled with family life.

Already as a child, Jimi was crazy about playing the guitar. Coming from a poor background, he never considered going to college, and joined the army in 1961 instead, a way for young Black men to make a decent living.

But after spending only one year with the paratroopers, Hendrix broke his ankle during a jump and had to be discharged from duty. That’s when Hendrix started to accompany different R&B bands. 

He went on tour with the Isley Brothers, Little Richard and many other stars of those days; his turf was the so-called Chitlin’ Circuit, an association of African-American dance clubs dotted across the eastern and southern United States. His start in the music business was anything but easy, yet Hendrix got to learn from some of the best and fiercest performers of his time.

https://www.dw.com/en/jimi-hendrix-still-a-legend-50-years-after-his-death/a-54911395

I was fortunate enough to see Jimi in a club called the “Oleo Strut”…..the club held about 200 people and it cost me 2 dollars to get in the door.

Let me close out the week with a few Hendrix songs….and remember.

All Along The Watch Tower…..

Hey Joe……

Jimi has been missed for 50 years….without his guitar we wind up with crap like Nickleback.

Jime Hendrix…..1942-1970……

The Real Day The Music Died.

“lego ergo scribo”

After The Fall?

Okay the America Civil War is over….the North has defeated the South in the war of “Northern Aggression”…..where did the losers slink off to after the fall?

Not all ran home to the plantation to lick their wounds.

Some went West and even some went as far as Mexico….but what did the majority actually do?

The late Charlie Daniels had a decent hit in 1974 with “The South’s Gonna Do It Again.” It would have provided a proper ear worm for Confederate forces and loyalists in 1865 after Lee surrendered to Grant at Appomattox Courthouse. Post-war conditions were not ideal in the southern states. Most of the war had been fought on Confederate soil, and it showed. Agriculture and infrastructure were devastated. Thousands of lives had been lost; other lives were irretrievably damaged. Economic opportunity was nearly nonexistent.

Some people went West to start over. There was land to be settled for displaced Southerners. More than one writer has suggested that part of the controversy in Tombstone, Arizona, between the Earps and the Cow-boys was that the Earps and their backers were Northerners — Virgil and James had both fought in the Union army — and as Casey Tefertiller writes in Wyatt Earp: The Life Behind the Legend, “the ranchers and cowboys of southern Arizona were mostly Democrats of Southern origin or sympathies.” (Doc Holliday, Earp ally and son of Georgia, was an exception.) But not everyone who remained loyal to the defeated Confederacy — the noble “Lost Cause,” celebrated by poets like Father Abram Ryan, per the Alabama website — even stayed within the freshly reunited United States. Slavery was abolished. The cause was lost. The war was over — but that didn’t have to mean the end. They were facing a military occupation by Northern troops in the wake of the conflict, what some called the “War of Northern Aggression.”

https://www.grunge.com/235923/this-is-where-confederate-loyalists-fled-to-after-the-civil-war/

Then there are the defeated leaders…..what became of these men?

Jefferson Davis, president of the Confederacy, spent two years shackled to a wall in a Virginia prison. He had many unlikely sympathetic supporters including the Pope, who advocated for mercy, and even some former enemies and abolitionists. After he was released he went to Canada and Cuba and England and eventually managed a successful insurance company, hiring only former Confederate officers. He remained an unrepentant racist and Confederate supporter until the end of his life.

Alexander Stephens, the vice president of the Confederacy, was arrested and held in prison at George’s Island in Boston until October, 1865. He was released from indemnity by Andrew Johnson, a pro-slavery, anti-Black President. He was elected to the Senate, which refused to allow him to sit; was elected to Congress; and became the governor of Georgia. Stephens was a rabid anti-Black racist who wrote the “Cornerstone Speech” stating the the Civil War was all about slavery and that Blacks would never be the equals of Whites.

https://www.mentalfloss.com/article/553359/where-did-confederate-leaders-go-after-confederacy-was-defeated

There were so many things that most Americans do not know about the Civil War….so much more than bang bang shoot’um up……

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Greco-Turkish Tensions

Looks like the Balkans are being heated up once again….this time it is age old enemies of Greece and Turkey…..

These nations have fought numerous times…..1821, 1897 and 1974……I have tried to keep my readers informed…..

https://lobotero.com/2018/12/28/greco-turkish-mindset/

https://lobotero.com/2019/12/16/greco-turkic-drama/

Why do these two nations tirelessly hate each other?

Recently it has been a war fought over the island nation of Cyprus…..this time Cyprus is still in the picture but they seem to be focusing on the control of some natural resources…..

U.S. and other Western leaders have long worried about what to do if an armed conflict ever erupted between two NATO members. Rapidly rising tensions between Greece and Turkey, primarily involving a maritime dispute over oil, natural gas, and other resources under the eastern Mediterranean, have brought that nightmare to the surface once again. Germany’s Foreign Minister, Heiko Maas, warned both governments in late August against further military escalation. “Fire is being played with and any small spark could lead to catastrophe,” he stressed.

The heart of the North Atlantic Treaty is Article 5, which proclaims that an attack on any member of the Alliance will be considered an attack on all. The underlying assumption is that there would then be a collective response to repel and punish the aggressor. Obviously, that approach would not work if two NATO signatories went to war against each other. Even determining which country was the aggressor and which the victim could be quite challenging.

https://www.cato.org/blog/old-nato-nightmare-returns-possible-war-between-greece-turkey

Greece is buying weapons from France in prep for a confrontation…

conservative Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis announced a purchase of billions of euros in French weaponry and a large increase in the size of the Greek military. This massive increase in military spending, by a country which the European Union (EU) has devastated with billions of euros in draconian cuts to social spending over the last decade, marks a major escalation in Greece’s ongoing military standoff with Turkey.

Mitsotakis indicated that Greece will purchase 18 Rafale fighter jets, four French naval frigates with naval helicopters, and a large supply of anti-tank weapons, torpedoes and missiles. It will also ask French firms to upgrade four Greek frigates that are already in service. Finally, Mitsotakis said that 15,000 more soldiers would be recruited to the Greek armed forces.

“The time has come to reinforce our armed forces. … This is an important program that will form a national shield,” Mitsotakis declared in a speech in Thessaloniki.

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/09/14/gree-s14.html

Will be a test for NATO…..an attack on one is an attack on all…..and this time it will be two member nations fighting each other….who will the US support?

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“lego ergo scribo”

Constitution Day

Closing Thought–17Sep20

It is 17 September and the day set aside as Constitution Day……if ever there should be a federal holiday to celebrate our independence it should be 17 September….for it is when the United States stepped out of confusion and presented the republic to the nation.

Of course that is just my opinion….but since it is Constitution Day I would like to write about the document that is so cherished by us Americans.

First the day we are celebrating…..

Constitution Day is observed every year on September 17 to commemorate the signing and adoption of the constitution of the United States of America by the Founding Fathers in Philadelphia on September 17, 1787.

Constitution Day is also known as Citizenship Day, which was the name of the holiday until 2004, as its purpose was to “recognize all who, by coming of age or by naturalization, have become citizens”. Citizenship Day in turn was inspired by “I am an American Day”, created in the 1940s to celebrate citizenship. The official name of the holiday is now “Constitution Day and Citizenship Day”.

Celebrations are held on this day, and schools hold instruction sessions on the founding principles and the significance of the US constitution and the constitutional rights contained in it. When the day falls on a Saturday or Sunday, schools and other institutions observe Constitution Day on a nearby weekday.

Further reading: Constitution Day on Wikipedia

Do yourself a favor and read the document…..

https://www.constituteproject.org/constitution/United_States_of_America_1992

https://www.senate.gov/civics/constitution_item/constitution.htm

Click to access CDOC-110hdoc50.pdf

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“lego ergo scribo”

Vietnam–The Mistakes

Old Professor’s History Class.

I study conflict, war if you will, and have found a couple of events around the war in Vietnam that can be labelled as arrogant mistakes….first by France and then by the US.

I realize there have been volumes written about this conflict….but few by people that actually fought that war.

As a veteran of this war I have studied and made my thoughts known….but there were more mistakes than just those of the US….France for instance was just as arrogant as the US and it cost them the territory and the war….a war that the US had to pick up and carry on (more on that further into this post)……

First thing to do is to throw all the Hollywood adaptations of this war down the toilet (TP not needed)……most of that stuff was total bullshit…….

France’s biggest screw up was arrogantly thinking they had a force, the Viet Minh, that was backward and incapable of carry on a proper war…..that was true and Giap decided that a guerilla war would accomplish the desires of throwing the French from Vietnamese soil.

The final nail in the coffin of the French in Vietnam was the battle of Dien Bien Phu……

It is 1954 in Southeast Asia….the French have been fighting for years against the Viet Minh under Ho and Giap and the French decided to make one final push to destroy opposition and be done with this war.  Sadly it did not work out as brilliantly as the French had promised……in fact a band of guerillas with no technology, aircraft, etc. handed the French their asses…..

The most consequential military engagement in Southeast Asia in the 20th century is the 1954 Battle of Dien Bien Phu. It was fought ostensibly between the French and the communist-led Viet Minh at Dien Bien Phu, an obscure valley bordering China, in the remote northwestern part of what was then French Indochina. The battle ended with a humiliating defeat for the French, which brought down the French government, ended French colonial rule in Asia, ushered in America’s epic military involvement in the region for decades to come, and fundamentally changed the global geostrategic landscape.

How the French lost this pivotal battle is just as telling as how significant the French defeat became.

https://www.hoover.org/research/lessons-dien-bien-phu

This conflict is seldom taught classes these days….and I think it should be mandatory…..this conflict illustrates just how very brilliant of a guerilla war can be…..and could have prevented mistakes.

Not all the mistakes we by the French in the Southeast Asian wars…..the US was just as arrogant as the French.

That brings me to the Tet Offensive…..

I was fortunate enough to live through those days of constant fighting….

I was a member of a LRRP team (long range recon) and for days we were watching a NVA troop movement we identified the unit as the 174th NVA Regitment…..we made our way back to base and reported what we had found and were basically called liars for they had info that they were camped 100 km northwest of the position we reported….in other words they believed signal intel over human intel and it bit them in the ass for the 174th was one of the units that did a lot of damage.

Finally someone has written about the lack of any good human intel in Vietnam……

The intelligence failings fall into three broad categories. In Vietnam, the US military possessed a lack of foresight, neglected fundamental intelligence-gathering principles, and suffered from an absence of strategy and direction.

On a fundamental level, US military intelligence was unable to gauge the level of communist infiltration in the South of the country. This meant the US forces had almost no idea of the size of the enemy’s forces

https://parlia.com/a/Pb7sF3gPgNp5NmfJLP7FzZj/why-did-the-us-lose-the-vietnam-war/us-strategic-failures/intelligence-failures

It was a lie then and it is a lie now!

The officials were told what was coming and everyone decide to believe a pile of mumbo jumbo from the electronics instead of those that had witnessed the movements.

For those interested this is the declassified reports……

https://www.intelligence.gov/tet-declassified/tet-declassified-documents

Further Reading:

https://www.thehistorypress.co.uk/articles/the-vietnam-war-tet-offensive/

https://www.britannica.com/topic/Tet-Offensive

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Closing Thought–16Sep20

The 1619 Project

With all this renewed interest in the history of slavery there has been a new educational project put together to teach students more about the institution of slavery over the sanitized version most get these days…. this attempt has been called “The 1619 Project”…….I covered this attempt on my op-ed blog……https://gulfsouthfreepress.wordpress.com/2020/08/30/that-1619-project/

I bring this up again because the president has said that schools that teach his will not be getting their federal funds…..(this from Epoch Times….not a source that I would go to regularly)

President Donald Trump on Sunday warned the Department of Education is investigating the use of the New York Times’ “1619 Project” in schools, saying that institutions that use the alternative narrative of U.S. history could lose federal funding.

The “1619 Project,” created by Nikole Hannah-Jones and widely panned by historians and political scientists, attempts to cast the Atlantic slave trade as the dominant factor in the founding of America instead of ideals such as individual liberty and natural rights. Some critics have said that it is an attempt to rewrite U.S. history through a left-wing lens. Some historians have criticized the project over inaccuracies such as the American Revolution having been fought to preserve the institution of slavery rather than for seeking independence from Britain.

“Department of Education is looking at this. If so, they will not be funded!” Trump wrote on Twitter Sunday, responding to a post that said California has “implemented the 1619 project into the public schools,” and that “soon you won’t recognize [A]merica.” California’s Department of Education came up with a draft model last month to include some of the project in history classes.

https://www.theepochtimes.com/trump-says-schools-teaching-ny-times-1619-project-will-not-be-funded_3489668.html

Let me see if I have this right….the president does not like the historical project so he will punish schools that teach it…..is that not what a dictator would do….that is if we had one in power?

I do think that the institution of slavery needs more attention in our schools, K-12, to ignore it is to ignore a principle of our Founding.

I cannot see how the founding was “all about” individual freedoms”……blacks and women were not equal or particularly free….the see it any other way is just an excellent whitewashing of history.

This country needs to have that “conversation” on slavery and it needs to stop hiding behind sanitized revisionism before it can be had.

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