Salsbury’s Slavery Spectacular!

(02-23-2018, updated 07-08-2018) The Black America Show: Slavery as Entertainment. Like Buffalo Bill's "Wild West Show", but about the Old South. A news headline called it a show about the “Fun-Loving Darky of Old Slavery Days.” I kid you not. This may well have been the beginning of Southern revisionist history: whitewashing Southern slavery and romanticizing the antebellum South.

My Honey-Do List For Post-Trump America

(10-30-2017, updated 07-11-2018) Fascism in America Part 11: Conclusion. Most of you Americans on the left were gobsmacked when Trump won the election. You completely underestimated his allure. So we now have a wanna-be fascist in the White House. Apart from dealing with the matter at hand, you all also have to think about post-Trump America.

Book Bans and Gag Rules and Fox, Good Grief!

(10-29-2017, updated 07-11-2018)  Propaganda, Censorship and Other Suppression of Dissent. The fascist attitude: if you're not for us, you're against us and therefore an enemy of the state. Suppression of opposition is key. Book bans, book burning, press censorship, etc. The flip side of government suppression of dissent is government propaganda. Distorting facts and history to create a convenient story to force-feed to the masses.

Charlottesville: Patriotism versus Malignant Nationalism

(09-05-2017, updated 07-12-2018)  Optimists still think that the white supremacists in Charlottesville were outliers, or that this is when everything changes. I'm not that optimistic. Too many Americans can't distinguish between patriotism and nationalism, let alone malignant nationalism. Or why that's important. To many outsiders America already lives with "a very quiet kind of fascism". I've always felt that America is primed for a fascist takeover. I'm sure most readers will still think, even after Charlottesville, that I'm overreacting, But I don't think I am.

American Re-education: America After Trump

(08-15-2017, updated 07-12-2018)  How To Bring Effective History Education To American Public Schools. So, Charlottesville happened. Trump is to blame, as well as all Trump supporters. It was 100% predictable. Only the willfully ignorant didn't see this coming. "Wir haben es nicht gewuβt" hasn't been a valid excuse since 1946, and neither is not knowing what that means.

Trump’s Success in the Republican Primary a Surprise

(01-31-2016, updated 07-14-2018)  Surprise? Only in America and only to Americans. In an otherwise good article, Ann Marie Cox claims that Trump's success in this GOP primary race could not have been foreseen with logic or by looking at history. Really? 

Trump’s Muslim Registration and Identification Plans

(11-20-2015, updated 07-14-2018)  What Americans should learn in History class: Just because something starts off small doesn't mean it's not a big deal. In an interview on NPR a few people discussed Trump's Muslim registration and identification plans. One person immediately brought up the Holocaust. Another thought it wouldn't hurt anyone to just register Muslims and require a Muslim ID.

Lies My Teacher Told Me by James W. Loewen: A Look at American High School History Education

(11-18-2015, updated 07-14-2018)  This explains American lack of historical perspective, the weird nationalist pride, the idolization of individuals and the notion that universities are communist breeding grounds. Loewen argues that high school history textbooks are the source of the problem.

What Passes for History Education Here is Pathetic

(11-17-2015- updated 07-14-2018) Historical bibliographies with unimportant anecdotes, alphabetically arranged; wars are about dates of battles and numbers killed -- I can see why kids think, "Why even bother?"

American History Education and Me: Broad Strokes, Please!

(03-19-2014, updated 07-15-2018)  What should history education be: the battles (and the dates and the dead) or the reasons they were fought? Let me pause for a moment and make an even stronger disclaimer than I made in last night's post. My focus is on slavery in this series of posts, so I focus on slavery when discussing the Civil War.