I can UNDERSTAND pessimism, but I don't BELIEVE in it. It's not simply a matter of faith, but of historical EVIDENCE. Not overwhelming evidence, just enough to give HOPE, because for hope we don't need certainty, only POSSIBILITY.
Missing from Presidents’ Day: The People They Enslaved
By Clarence Lusane
Schools across the country are adorned with posters of the 44 U.S. presidents and the years they served in office. U.S. history textbooks describe the accomplishments and challenges of the major presidential administrations—George Washington had the Revolutionary War, Abraham Lincoln the Civil War, Teddy Roosevelt the Spanish-American War, and so on. Children’s books put students on a first-name basis with the presidents, engaging readers with stories of their dogs in the Rose Garden or childhood escapades. Nowhere in all this information is there any mention of the fact that more than one in four U.S. presidents were involved in human trafficking and slavery.
Teach Students to Question the President
On last Sunday’s CBS show “Face the Nation,” senior Trump policy adviser Stephen Miller defended Trump’s travel ban and said, “The powers of the president to protect our country are very substantial and will not be questioned.” We need to remind students that this country has been at its best when people have organized to question and challenge presidents.
Tackling the Headlines: Teaching Humanity and History
With each passing day, it’s becoming more apparent that Trump’s agenda can only be enacted if people are ignorant of the issues underlying his supposed solutions. Having trouble finding and keeping work? Build that wall. Fearful of terrorist attacks? Ban Muslims. Want energy security and infrastructure development? Build that pipeline. The best antidote to Trump’s xenophobia, racism, misogyny, and fossil-fuel soaked future is critical thinking.