Founder of controversial ‘1619 Project’ called ‘white race’ ‘barbaric devils’ in 1995 letter

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Nikole Hannah-Jones, founder of the highly controversial “1619 Project,” referred to the “white race” as “barbaric devils” in a 1995 letter to a university newspaper.

In the correspondence, Hannah-Jones claimed that whites historically murdered, raped, and plundered, adding that it is composed today of “bloodsuckers.”

Her letter to the University of Notre Dame’s “The Observer” newspaper claimed that “the white race is the biggest murderer, rapist, pillager, and thief of the modern world,” the Daily Caller reported, noting that the letter had been obtained first by The Federalist.

The 1619 Project, enabled by The New York Times Magazine, is a widely-refuted attempt to revise the narrative of America’s founding history to refocus primarily on racism and slavery.

In her letter, Hannah-Jones referred to the actions and activities of European explorers as “acts of devils” while equating Italian explorer Christopher Columbus to Nazi leader Adolph Hitler.

NYT’s 1619 Project Foun… by The Federalist on Scribd

“[The whites’] lasting monument was the destruction and enslavement of two races of people,” she wrote.

Hannah-Jones went on to claim that Africans came to North America long before white Europeans, however, unlike them, Africans became friends with the indigenous peoples of the continent and traded with them. She also claimed that pyramids in Mexico represent the kinship.

In transitioning to the present day, Hannah-Jones then argued that whites are still taking advantage of others.

“The descendants of these savage people pump drugs and guns into the Black community, pack Black people into the squalor of segregated urban ghettos and continue to be bloodsuckers in our community,” she wrote, without evidence to support her claims.

She ended the letter with pity for the author she was responding to, claiming that white people continue to struggle with a complex of supremacy.

“But after everything that those barbaric devils did, I do not hate them,” she wrote. “I understand that because of some lacking, they needed to [sic] constantly prove their superiority.”

Hannah-Jones was awarded a Pulitzer Prize in May for the 1619 Project, which has been widely panned as historically inaccurate. Her work was fact-checked by several historians and academics, leading her to make substantial corrections.

She has even admitted that the corrections were “important,” adding that she “los[t] important context and nuance” in her essay.

Hannah-Jones has also argued that her factually incorrect work was “patriotic.”

In March, the Daily Wire noted that The New York Times was warned by academics that Hannah-Jones’ work was factually erroneous. Leslie Harris, a history professor at Northwestern University and an author, argued against Hannah-Jones’ claim in the project that the American Revolution was fought to preserve slavery.

“I vigorously disputed the claim. Although slavery was certainly an issue in the American Revolution, the protection of slavery was not one of the main reasons the 13 Colonies went to war,” Harris wrote.

“Despite my advice, the Times published the incorrect statement about the American Revolution anyway, in Hannah-Jones’ introductory essay. In addition, the paper’s characterizations of slavery in early America reflected laws and practices more common in the antebellum era than in Colonial times, and did not accurately illustrate the varied experiences of the first generation of enslaved people that arrived in Virginia in 1619,” she noted further.

Harris also noted in a column for Politico that five academic historians signed a letter claiming “that the 1619 Project got some significant elements of the history wrong, including the claim that the Revolutionary War was fought to preserve slavery” but that the paper nevertheless refused to correct the errors.


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