To celebrate the Fourth of July, Rep. Rashida Tlaib decided to denounce America and the Declaration of Independence on Twitter.
Tlaib retweeted this message:
"Our founding fathers were not living gods…they were fallible human beings." The Declaration of Independence "did not condemn slavery, protect the rights of women or include Native Americans." https://t.co/RujjiopufJ
— Ayanna Pressley (@AyannaPressley) July 4, 2019
So the Declaration of Independence is “sexist, racist, and prejudiced”?
Do you know who DIDN’T believe that the Declaration was “sexist, racist, and prejudiced”?
So why is Rashida Tlaib repeating the arguments of the racist Taney and Steve Douglas against the anti-slavery Lincoln and Fred Douglass?
Because she doesn’t know any better.
Yet despite its overwhelmingly positive impact on history, the Declaration of Independence was also a product of its time — and bears some of the shortcomings of its era, including sexism, racism and prejudice against Native Americans. …
I won’t repeat any of the historical distortions and outright lies that the piece makes in order to make its point.
I could go line by line and explain how Salon and Tlaib get everything wrong about the Declaration and the American Founders.
But I realized I don’t have to do that because someone else already did.
Now here’s where it gets REALLY interesting.
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, whether she knows it or not, actually contradicted Tlaib in her own July 4th message this morning.
Here’s what AOC tweeted this morning:
Happy Independence Day!
American democracy was once an unspeakable idea. To challenge the divine right of Kings & aristocrats was to challenge the structure of society.
The founders’ notion of a government by the people was incredibly radical. And in many ways, it still is. ?? https://t.co/xrwyIA4nae
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) July 4, 2019
Good for her.
And then she also retweeted this:
Frederick Douglass knew the importance of the Declaration, which is why he used it to pen a searing indictment of slavery. Read his imperishable statement. https://t.co/rZoJk5kEVz
— Annette Gordon-Reed (@agordonreed) July 4, 2019
Now, if you read that speech from Frederick Douglass, you’ll find that Douglass, a former slave, contradicts everything that Rashida Tlaib believes about the Declaration of Independence.
Here’s what Douglass has to say about the Founders:
“Fellow Citizens, I am not wanting in respect for the fathers of this republic. The signers of the Declaration of Independence were brave men. They were great men too — great enough to give fame to a great age. It does not often happen to a nation to raise, at one time, such a number of truly great men. The point from which I am compelled to view them is not, certainly, the most favorable; and yet I cannot contemplate their great deeds with less than admiration. They were statesmen, patriots and heroes, and for the good they did, and the principles they contended for, I will unite with you to honor their memory. …”
“They were peace men; but they preferred revolution to peaceful submission to bondage. They were quiet men; but they did not shrink from agitating against oppression. They showed forbearance; but that they knew its limits. They believed in order; but not in the order of tyranny. With them, nothing was “settled” that was not right. With them, justice, liberty and humanity were “final;” not slavery and oppression. You may well cherish the memory of such men. They were great in their day and generation. Their solid manhood stands out the more as we contrast it with these degenerate times.”
So Rashida Tlaib was just contradicted by none other than Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, courtesy of the great Frederick Douglass.