Rewriting history as political strategy – a phenomenon as old as history itself?

My latest article for 20One Magazine:

20One

One can only imagine the silent gasp many made when hearing the speech of Ben Carson, US secretary of Housing and Urban Development, in March 2017. Mentioning the history of slavery and slave trade in and to America, he said: “That’s what America is about, the lands of dreams and opportunities. There were other immigrants who came here in the bottom of slave ships, worked even longer and harder for less. But they too had a dream that one day their sons, daughters and grandsons, granddaughters, great-grandsons, great-granddaughters might pursue prosperity and happiness in this land.”

(Link: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/06/us/politics/ben-carson-refers-to-slaves-as-immigrants-in-first-remarks-to-hud-staff.html?_r=1)

It is more than a strange way of interpreting history, when speaking of slaves and forced labour under the most horrible circumstances as immigration and the search for prosperity and happiness. A statement that seemed to have caused great outrage even among the department’s own staff. One could easily dismiss this…

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