Jordan Candler / Nov. 1, 2016

Revisionist History Distorts Slavery's Roots

College students' view of slavery smells of liberal indoctrination.

Go to any university and the chances of interacting with students who can’t identify any U.S. senator is virtually guaranteed. That’s what Media Research Center’s Dan Joseph discovered a few years ago at American University, where a near-unanimous number of students failed to name a single senator or correctly answer how many of them occupy the U.S. Senate.

It’s unfortunate that such ignorance permeates our education system, as demonstrated, for example, in college students’ view of slavery, which Professor Duke Pesta lays out in an interview with The College Fix. Pesta, who has taught at numerous schools, conducted an 11-year experiment in which new students at Purdue University, University of Tennessee Martin, Ursinus College, Oklahoma State University, and University of Wisconsin Oshkosh were presented a simple quiz to gauge their level of competency on subjects like slavery. His findings help explain today’s ill-informed political revolution among the college-aged.

Pesta says, “Most of my students could not tell me anything meaningful about slavery outside of America. They are convinced that slavery was an American problem that more or less ended with the Civil War, and they are very fuzzy about the history of slavery prior to the Colonial era. Their entire education about slavery was confined to America.” Moreover, “They cannot tell you many historical facts or relate anything meaningful about historical biographies, but they are, however, stridently vocal about the corrupt nature of the Republic, about the wickedness of the founding fathers, and about the evils of free markets. Most alarmingly, they know nothing about the fraught history of Marxist ideology and communist governments over the last century, but often reductively define socialism as ‘fairness.’”

Pesta believes it will only grow worse under guys like David Coleman, who was instrumental in the development of Common Core and who now leads the College Board. The problem boils down to the fact that a few (very progressive) executives at the top control the levers. The centralization of education by social activists has transcended individual discernment and critical thinking. The result is a revisionist history that tarnishes truth. And the truth is that America partook of a globally practiced deplorable deed — a deed that it eventually purged. By teaching students otherwise, revisionists are raising slaves of the state.

Slavery, of course, has existed for most of human history. It still does in much of the world, and it’s often based on faith or sex. But it’s easier for college brats to meditate on the sins of the past than to tackle the problems of the present.

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