Sunday, January 30, 2011

Yeah...About Those "Founding Fathers" (VIDEO)

Look, there's a fine line between spin and a flat out lie.  We've all grown accustomed to the spin on both sides of the aisle from politicians who are trying to persuade us that their ideology is the correct ideology for the job.  That's to be expected.   What is inexcusable, however, is when our so-called leaders flat out lie about verifiable facts in order to score political points.  There's already enough misinformation floating around out there about the laws and policies that effect our day to day lives, so we certainly don't need politicians out there trying to rewrite history to fit their political agenda.  One such politician, Michelle Bachmann, recently volunteered the following statement about slavery while giving an address to the Tea Party:

"But we also know that the very founders who wrote those documents worked tirelessly until slavery was no more in the United States. And I think it's high time that we recognize the contribution of our forebearers who worked like John Quincy Adams who would not rest until slavery was extinguished in the Country."
Um, what country are YOU talking about, lady?  Or perhaps more straight to the point, what history book have you been reading from because the history books that all the rest of us have are very clear on this topic.  The Founding Fathers did not end slavery.  Period.  And they certainly did not work tirelessly until slavery was no more in the United Sates.  In fact, the Founding Fathers wrote slavery into the Constitution in two places:

Article I Sect. 2, which defines the House of Representatives, states that slaves were to be counted as 3/5 of a person for purposes of determining how many Representatives should be apportioned from each State based on its population.

Article IV Sect. 2 states flat out that if a slave escapes from one State and runs across the border into another State, then the latter State must return to the slave to the former State. 
So let's be clear, the Founding Fathers saw no problem with codifying slavery into our Constitution back in 1789 when the Country was founded.  And when we're talking about the "Founding Fathers," let's also be clear on who we are talking about.  We're talking about these guys:

  1. Benjamin Franklin (owned slaves and died in 1790)
  2. George Washington (owned slaves and died in 1799)
  3. John Adams (actually did not own slaves and died in 1826)
  4. Thomas Jefferson (owned 100's of slaves and died in 1826)
  5. John Jay (actually did not own slaves and died in 1829)
  6. James Madison (owned slaves and died in 1836)
  7. Alexander Hamilton (owned slaves and died in 1804)
  8. John Hancock (owned a slave and died in 1793)
As history clearly shows us, most of these guys owned slaves.  So any claim that the Founding Fathers worked tirelessly "until slavery was no more in the United States" we know can't be true.  Perhaps their SLAVES worked tirelessly, but as far as the Founding Fathers themselves working tirelessly to end slavery, that is just flat out false.  Now as for the 2 Founding Fathers that didn't own slaves, the longest living one died in 1829.   In fact, none of the Founding Fathers lived past the 1830's.  Why is this important?  Because it is an indisputable FACT that slavery did not end in the United States until the 13th Amendment was passed in 1865 as a direct result of the Civil War.  Out of all the Founding Fathers to this country, NONE of them were alive when this happened.  In other words, Michelle Bachmann is full of shit.

Video of Chris Matthews correctly taking the Tea Party to task over this nonsense after the jump:

What do you make of this effort to rewrite history by the Tea Party?  What are they trying to accomplish with this effort?
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