Book Recommendation: Lies My Teacher Told Me by James W. Loewen

I’m now half way through the book. So far it’s covered the myth of Christopher Columbus, the genocide of indigenous tribes in the continental U.S., John Brown and Abraham Lincoln, Racism, and now I’m on the chapter about Labor.

There’s enough in this book to really get ones blood to a vigorous flow, perhaps a boil. Perhaps it’s because I identify with a lot of what’s going on in the book so far. For instance, I get Mohawk ancestry from my mothers side. Now I understand HOW that ended up in my family. For example, did you know a lot of slaves who’d escaped and even white people who had enough of the religious fundamentalism ‘escaped’ into Indian tribes? Yeah. So that’s likely how my ancestry came about.

But reading what white Europeans did to those indigenous tribes – the book estimates that by the time settlement started occurring in what is now the United States there were approximately 20 million native Americans. Today 1.2% of the U.S. population has native ancestry. Out of 330,000,000 people that means 3,960,000 or just 20% of pre-Columbian populations. That one really makes my blood boil.

Then the book goes on about the racism in the U.S. from the period just before the Civil War and into Reconstruction. It’s pretty disgusting to be honest but it’s a history that I only had a dim awareness of prior to reading this book. The mid 19th century was a real mess. And it really didn’t get much better over the following hundred years. And we still have a very long way to go to end racism. I mean we’ve all heard the bleatings of the bigots as I like to call it when it comes to the ‘brown’ people. It’s not just Mexicans and Latin Americans they’re disparaging in their comments but African Americans too.

And now I’m in the section on labor. This is going to be a good one I’m sure. I wish I had the cash, I’d donate this book to all my friends. If you want you can buy a copy on Amazon

I really cannot stress it any more, read this book. It’s very eye opening.

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