One of the marks of authoritarian regimes is their effort to stop the spread of knowledge and free speech. In May 1933, Nazi sympathizers in Berlin burned 20,000 "degenerate" books, many of them written by Jews and anti-fascists such as Albert Einstein, Bertolt Brecht and Franz Kafka. Here at home, slaveholders were so frightened by the power of the word that throughout the antebellum South legislatures made it a crime to teach slaves to read and write.
Now, Lynne Cheney, Vice President Dick Cheney's wife and the former head of the National Endowment for the Humanities, has placed herself in the company of dictators and slaveholders. At her urging, the Education Department destroyed more than 300,000 copies of a booklet designed to help parents and children learn more about America's past.
What Cheney really opposes is the prominent place that "social history" has assumed over the last 30 years. Known among its practitioners as "history from the bottom up," social historians argue that American history has too often been taught as the history of famous white men, political parties and industrialists
Destroying books that disagree with one's vision of history will never take us closer to truth and freedom. As President Eisenhower warned Dartmouth College graduates in June 1953: "Don't think you're going to conceal faults by concealing evidence that they ever existed." His words remain true today.
This administration, and all those connected to it, are scared to death of this country coming "closer to truth and freedom". It's as if they wished that the clock had stopped in the 1950's, before there was much public awareness of government malfeasance and lying, not to mention the subjugation of citizens based on color or national origin. You can't turn back the clock, and why would you want to (except to get a Chevy Nomad cheap)?
Why do they hate America so much? Or is it that they think the American dream is only for rich white people?