Announcing the executive order to rescind the "1776 Commission," the Biden administration stated that Trump's panel “sought to erase America’s history of racial injustice." The repeal was among several executive orders that the new president has signed in efforts to address social injustices, such as racial and gender disparities.
— Logan McDonald (@_loganmcdonald) January 20, 2021
According to NBC News, the controversial report was produced by an 18-person commission of mostly male conservative educators. The report, which was released on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, aimed to delegitimize "The 1619 Project," which intended to shed light on the reality of slavery.
“Many Americans labor under the illusion that slavery was somehow a uniquely American evil,” the "1776 Commission" reads. “The unfortunate fact is that the institution of slavery has been more the rule than the exception throughout human history.”
As part of his goal to promote “patriotic education” and get support from white voters, Trump pushed for his report to be used in classrooms around the country, HuffPost reported. Without input from professional historians, the document glorifies the founders and criticizes progressive ideas, describing them as “false and fashionable ideologies.”
As opposed to "The 1619 Project," the Trump narrative paints Black history as a story of “oppression and victimhood.”
“It’s an insult to the whole enterprise of education. Education is supposed to help young people learn to think critically,” David Blight, a Civil War historian at Yale University, told HuffPost. “That report is a piece of right-wing
Although the White House removed the propaganda, the writers moved the document to conservative websites. James Grossman, executive director of the American Historical Association, said he hopes that the report will not leak into classrooms.
“Historians need to be paying attention to curriculum conversations in localities and at the state level,” he said. “The nonsense that’s in this report will be used to legitimate similar nonsense.”
While pushing his own agenda, the former president threatened to defund schools that had plans of implementing curriculum around "The 1619 Project," as Blavity previously reported. As he did throughout his term until he was permanently banned from several social media outlets, Trump took to Twitter to stir controversy, tweeting that California would be investigated if the aforementioned study was used in schools.
Ibram X. Kendi, a historian of racism at Boston University, described the report as “the last great lie from a Trump administration of great lies.”
"This report makes it seems as if slaveholding founding fathers were abolitionists; that Americans were the early beacon of the global abolitionist movement; that the demise of slavery in the United States was inevitable," Kendi tweeted.
This report makes it seems as if slaveholding founding fathers were abolitionists; that Americans were the early beacon of the global abolitionist movement; that the demise of slavery in the United States was inevitable;
— Ibram X. Kendi (@DrIbram) January 19, 2021