Ibram X. Kendi and Jason Reynolds insist that "Stamped: Racism, Anti-racism, and You" is not a history book. It's "a book about the present." Yet, when CBS "This Morning" co-host Michelle Miller asked the two authors on Tuesday how they plan to re-teach the history of our Founding Fathers, they didn't bat an eye.
"I think first and foremost you ask the question, what does it mean that a slaveholder heralded the American philosophy of freedom?" Kendi told the CBS panel. "So, you start there. And I think young people can understand the contradictions."
"Through a gripping, fast-paced, and energizing narrative written by beloved award-winner Jason Reynolds, this book shines a light on the many insidious forms of racist ideas - and on ways readers can identify and stamp out racist thoughts in their daily lives," the book's Amazon description reads.
Kendi and Reynolds expanded on that notion on "This Morning" when Miller asked them how they will address the "lies" and "misconceptions" about former presidents like Thomas Jefferson and George Washington.
"They're people with contradictions," Kendi said. "They're people who express both racist and anti-racist ideas."
.@CBSThisMorning: There "are so many misconceptions and, truly lies, about what children are taught about their history”; how we do “re-teach” Americans about “revered” figures like Jefferson and Washington? pic.twitter.com/zqtMxH83rp— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) March 10, 2020
Tony Dokoupil presented a slightly different perspective and asked the authors to consider the parents who will refuse to acknowledge a book that questions the history of the greatest nation on earth.
"If we love the country as much as we claim we do, then we must be honest about," Reynolds answered. "This is the ultimate act of patriotism as far as I'm concerned."
In the book, Kendi also expands on a phrase he once coined, "uplift suasion," which, according to the authors means, "overcoming racism by trying to fit into a white mold."
These authors aren't the only ones trying to erase or revise the history of our founders. In several cities, progressive protesters and activists have demanded the removal of statues, schools, and street signs dedicated to the likes of Washington and Jefferson.
Is this really how we want young people to perceive the Founding Fathers?