Tags: Condi Rice | Slavery | Book

Condi Rice: 'Sanitizing' History of US Slave Owners a 'Bad Thing'

By    |   Monday, 08 May 2017 12:18 PM

Efforts to remove the names and monuments for presidents and others who were slave owners is "sanitizing history," and that's a "bad thing," former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Monday.

"I'm a firm believer in keeping your history before you," Rice said on Fox News' "Fox and Friends," in response to a question about her new book, "Democracy: Stories from the Long Road to Freedom," and about how she sees herself in the Constitution.

"When we look at nine of our first 12 presidents as slave owners, should we start taking their statues down, saying we're embarrassed by you?" co-anchor Brian Kilmeade asked.

"I don't actually want to rename things that were named for slave owners," Rice responded. "I want us to look at the names and recognize what they did and be able to tell our kids what they did and for them to have a sense of their own history. When you start wiping out history, sanitizing history to make you feel better, it's a bad thing."

She did point out that the Constitution originally counted her ancestors as "three-fifths of a man," but pointed out that America is continuing to evolve and grow.

"In 1952, my father had trouble registering to vote in Birmingham, Alabama," said Rice. "In 2005, I stood in the Ben Franklin room, one of our founders, and I took an oath of office to that same Constitution and it was administered by a Jewish woman Supreme Court justice. That is the story of America."

The road to freedom in the United States has been long and violent, but ultimately, it has meant that Americans have been "expanding the definition of 'we the people,'" said Rice.

Rice also defended founding fathers and former presidents like George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Andrew Jackson for having been slave owners.

"They were the people of their times," Rice said. "I wish they had been like John Adams, who did not believe in slavery. I wish they had been like Alexander Hamilton, who was an immigrant by the way, a child of questionable parentage from the Caribbean. I wish all of them had been like that, Jefferson in particular. There were a lot of contradictions in Jefferson ... we should celebrate the Jeffersons, Washingtons, slave owners. Look where we are now."

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Efforts to remove the names and monuments for presidents and others who were slave owners is "sanitizing history," and that's a "bad thing," former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Monday. "I'm a firm believer in keeping your history before you," Rice said...
Condi Rice, Slavery, Book
388
2017-18-08
Monday, 08 May 2017 12:18 PM
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