How Not to Talk About Slavery

Nothing to worry about for this slave because maybe he’ll be well-fed and have decent lodgings. By Austa Malinda French (1810-1880) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

You are failing spectacularly at whatever it is you think you are doing if you find yourself qualifying America’s history with slavery by saying that some slaves were “well-fed and had decent lodgings.” In fact, if you’ve lived a life that has led you to not understand that a statement like that adds no value to our public discourse, then you have failed spectacularly at life.

Bill O’Reilly made exactly these claims while fact-checking Michelle Obama’s speech from Monday night. Criticizing O’Reilly for this isn’t being PC, though I’m sure right wingers are defending O’Reilly at this very moment by whining about overzealous “PC police.”

Calling out someone for trying to diminish the horror of slavery is not being PC. It’s being a decent human being. And if people on the right don’t see the difference, I feel sorry for them.


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