Creator of NYT’s pet project pushing America’s ‘racist’ founding argues it’s ‘patriotic’

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One of the key proponents of an outrageous project to smear America as a racist country is defending the work as “patriotic.”

The New York Times journalist and creator of “The 1619 Project,” Nikole Hannah-Jones, made the ridiculous claim in an appearance on “CBS This Morning” as she described the endeavor marking the 400th anniversary of the first enslaved Africans arriving by ship to the colony of Virginia.

(Video: YouTube/CBS)

The New York Times magazine’s leftist project “aims to reframe the country’s history, understanding 1619 as our true founding, and placing the consequences of slavery and the contributions of slavery and the contributions of black Americans at the very center of the story we tell ourselves about who we are,” the outlet stated about the project.

Jones contended on CBS Thursday that the ideals in Thomas Jefferson’s writing of the Declaration of Independence “were not true when they were written” but that black Americans “have fought to make those ideals real.”

CBS co-host Gayle King shred how “embarrassed” she was that she had never even heard of the significance of the date, 1619, until she read Hannah-Jones’ essay. The Times journalist dismissed criticism the project has received, saying “people are not arguing the facts.”

“History is history and we have to tell the truth,” she said, asserting that the 1619 premise is “not de-legitimizing” America’s founding history.

“Black Americans have actually used those founding words to bring us closer to the democracy that the Founders envisioned,” she claimed. “And that is the most patriotic of things.”

Pressed to elaborate on her remark, Hannah-Jones reiterated that the project and its aim is actually very American in its ideals.

“Yes, of course it is,” she replied when asked if she sees the project as a “patriotic act.”

“This isn’t saying that this is a country that needs to be destroyed. This is not saying that this is a country that’s illegitimate,” she continued. “It’s saying that this is a country founded on ideals that were not true at the time, but that black Americans believed in those ideals and then worked to make those ideals true for all groups.”

“I don’t see what is more patriotic than that,” she asserted.

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Hannah-Jones noted that America’s alleged legacy of racism has affected other aspects of history as well, responding to King’s remark that she was so “proud” to see how “just about anything that’s happened in the world today” can be tied to slavery, including health care.

Racism is behind the fact that the U.S. is “the only industrialized country in the Western world that doesn’t have free health care,” Hannah-Jones contended, making another eyebrow-raising claim that polling shows “white Americans will reject social programs if they think large numbers of black people will benefit from them.”

Critics have blasted the project as propaganda and note how its release coincided with comments made by The New York Times’ executive editor, Dean Baquet, to shift the focus of the paper.

“We built our newsroom to cover one story, and we did it truly well,” Baquet reportedly said. “Now we have to regroup, and shift resources and emphasis to take on a different story.”

Lest critics dismiss “The 1619 Project” as just another Times endeavor to re-write history, a new curriculum based on the narrative will be making its way into America’s classrooms.

Discussion questions, projects and reading activities are being presented in the curriculum by the Pulitzer Center which indicated that Hannah-Jones and editors at the New York Times “were eager for educators across grade levels to reconsider how slavery is taught.”

“Other activities to engage students include creating a new timeline of U.S. history, starting with the year 1619, and creating an infographic that visualizes racial inequity in the United States and its links to slavery,” according to Education Week.

One lesson based on Hannah-Jones’ essay “The Idea of America” asks students to “consider the values stated in the Declaration of Independence and how they work—and fail—in American society today.”

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