It shouldn’t surprise anyone that when it comes to American history, journalists- who are practically all some variety of socialist now- get it wrong most of the time.
They study at schools that teach that ideology and point of view come before facts when recounting history.
You don’t like the conclusion? Change the facts.
Academics and journalists have gone about trying to re-write American history for a half-century. It’s easier to change facts than it is to read actual books about an event.
That’s partly why journalists have the story of Paul Revere’s ride so fouled up.
But the most significant reason why they have the story wrong is because they hate Sarah Palin and, apparently Paul Revere too.
As David Hackett Fischer observed in his excellent 1995 book Paul Revere’s Ride, published by Oxford University Press- O.K. some universities still teach history- “The only creature less fashionable in academe than the stereotypical ‘dead white male,’ is the dead white male on horseback.”
As most everyone has already read, Sarah Palin included a shout out about Revere recently.
The words were inelegant, yes, but generally correct historically.
This much is for sure: Palin’s version is a lot more correct than the journalists correcting her.
I’ve emphasized major points of dispute in the Palin quotes:
“He who warned the British that they weren’t going to be taking away our arms,” said Palin, “by ringing those bells, and making sure as he’s riding his horse through town to send those warning shots and bells that we were going to be secure and we were going to be free.”
And she defended herself on Fox News on Sunday by saying: “Part of Paul Revere’s ride — and it wasn’t just one ride — he was a courier, he was a messenger. Part of his ride was to warn the British that we’re already there. That, hey, you’re not going to succeed.”
They key to understanding what Palin is talking about is to know that Paul Revere’s celebrated “ride” was not just a one-off event. That’s why Palin said “and it wasn’t just one ride.”
Months prior to the most famous “ride,” Revere took part in the powder alarms, acting as a courier to warn communities that the British would try to seize gunpowder stored in the country in order to deny it to potential rebels, to deny them arms.
More importantly, Revere also acted as one of the main organizers of the warning systems that communities in New England used as a type of low-tech “emergency broadcast warning system.” These systems were perfected during the powder alarms.
The systems included warning bells and alarm guns, as Palin implied when she said “by ringing those bells… to send those warning shots and bells.”
Both bells and guns could be heard over long distances between New England towns.
In response to this alarm system the British tried to quarantine Boston in order to prevent the activation of the alarms.
That is why the patriots hung lanterns in the Old North Church. The lanterns would activate a system, created by Revere, of couriers, alarm bells and alarm guns that would warn that the “British were coming.”
It’s clear by her remarks that Palin understood all this. Far from damning her, I’m impressed by her grasp of the details of Paul Revere, a rather neglected but important figure in American history.
By contrast, if you asked a journalist to write about gender identity between the end of the French and Indian War and the shots at Lexington and Concord, they’d have no problem coming up with a few paragraphs on this worthless subject.
But when it comes to writing about American history, they remain ignorant and clueless of even basics of how our country came into existence.
New York Magazine admitted as much when they quoted the Washington Post as explaining that perhaps Sarah knew what she was talking about when she said that Revere was out warning the British that they were not going to succeed.
“According to the Washington Post,” writes NYMag, “Palin appears to be referring to a part of the story in which Revere is detained by the British and warns them, while at gunpoint, that 500 American militiamen await in Concord. That segment isn't in the Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem, the layman's version of events, but it is in fact described elsewhere in historical accounts.”
Not to be bothered picking up a real, historical account of Revere’s ride to check Palin’s accuracy, apparently the MSM only consulted the Longfellow poem. Since it wasn’t in the poem, it probably didn’t happen, they concluded.
That’s an easy conclusion to come to when you have already negatively judged someone as the media has done to Palin. As one journalist confessed to me recently, there is real damage to objective reporting when you go to a story already knowing the “truth.”
In the introduction to his book on Paul Revere, author Fischer says that multiculturalism and anti-patriotic fervor at universities combine to create “broad prejudices against patriotic events of every kind.”
And apparently so too against patriotic persons of every type.
Or at least those bitter patriots who cling to their religion and their guns, named Palin, Revere, Bachman, Cain, Romney, Paul, Pawlenty, etc, etc, amen.
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