Republican Senator Tom Cotton last week blamed the lack of attention to the Mayflower anniversary event on leftists who he says are trying to rewrite history
Republican Senator Tom Cotton blasted The New York Times’ 1619 Project to try to rewrite history following a lack of events to mark the Mayflower’s 400th anniversary.
After a speech in the Senate on Wednesday where he attacked the project, he wrote an essay published by Fox News on Saturday dubbing on the “revisionist charlatans of the radical left”.
Cotton wrote: “Unfortunately, we haven’t heard much about this year’s anniversary because pilgrims are no longer in fashion in elite circles.
“Again this week, the New York Times food section ran an article that called the story of the pilgrim, including the first Thanksgiving, a ‘myth’ and a ‘caricature’. Instead of these so-called “myths,” the liberal newspaper seeks to replace its own, claiming that our nation’s history is one unbroken story of conflict, oppression and misery.
“But this is a lie about our country and its founders. No matter what the revisionist historians of The Times up to, the truth about Pilgrims is more remarkable than any story or holiday special. This thanksgiving is worth thinking about why we celebrate pilgrims and their living heritage for our nation.
The Mayflower ‘is arguably one of the most important dates in American history, the day the first pilgrims arrived from England to what we now call Plymouth, Massachusetts on November 21, 1620.
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November 21, 2020 is the 400th anniversary of the day the Mayflower arrived in what we now call Plymouth, Massachusetts
The traditional narrative portraying the pilgrims as hardy pioneers and adventurers has been dismissed by critics who believe they were colonizers who participated in a slow-motion genocide of Native Americans.
Republican Senator Tom Cotton wrote an op-ed for Fox News on Saturday – four days after he detonated the New York Times Project 1619 in the Senate
WHAT IS THE 1619 PROJECT?
Project 1619 began as an essay published in a special issue of NYT Magazine in August 2019.
The question was about the 400th anniversary of the first enslaved Africans brought to the United States and the lasting legacy of slavery.
Journalist and creator Nikole Hannah-Jones received the 2020 Pulitzer Prize for Commentary for the play.
The work then evolved into a larger project reexamining America’s roots.
The project “aims to reframe the country’s history by placing the consequences of slavery and the contributions of black Americans at the very center of the national narrative,” according to the site.
His claims have been criticized and contested by historians and conservative politicians.
Dozens of events were planned by Plymouth 400, Inc, a non-profit organization tasked with running celebratory programs, before being pushed back to 2021 earlier this year due to the pandemic.
The refurbishment and subsequent transatlantic voyage of the Mayflower II, a 17th century replica of the ship, has also been postponed until next year. The ship had returned to Plymouth in August after extensive renovations.
In his speech to the Senate, he said: “There seems to be few commemorations, parades or festivals to celebrate pilgrims this year, perhaps in part because revisionist charlatans on the radical left have previously claimed responsibility for the pilgrims. year before as the true foundation of America.
“Maybe the politically correct editors of Debunked Project 1619 are now also responsible for the pumpkin pie recipes at The Times.
The long-standing account of how the Pilgrims came to establish the original 13 settlements and their conquest of the indigenous peoples of the land has been re-examined and debunked in recent years.
Most American children grow up with the beneficent story of the Pilgrims: how Native Americans extended a hand of friendship to English settlers, helping them survive their first winter on these shores, and later joining them for the first feast of Thanksgiving.
But modern revisions claim to show that there is a darker side to this story.
Critics have dismissed the portrayal of the Pilgrims as hardy pioneers and say they were in fact colonizers who took part in a slow-motion genocide of Native Americans.
Dozens of events had been planned to commemorate the event but were canceled or postponed to 2021 due to the pandemic. Pictured above the Mayflower II, a replica of the original Mayflower ship that brought Pilgrims to America 400 years ago, travels to Plymouth in August as it returns home after extensive renovations
The story of how the pilgrims came to establish the original 13 colonies and their conquest of the indigenous peoples of the country has been revisited in recent years.
Four centuries after white Europeans left the Mayflower, some settler descendants grapple with the complicated legacy of their ancestors in a racial context.
Perhaps most prominently in The New York Times Project 1619 is the counter-narrative of America’s dark past.
Launched in 2019, 1619 “aims to reframe the country’s history by placing the consequences and contributions of black Americans at the very center.”
The title refers to the year the first ship arrived on American soil carrying the first enslaved Africans – notably a year before the arrival of the Mayflower.
The project has been sharply criticized by many conservatives, including President Trump who announced earlier this year his intention to launch a counter-initiative dubbed the “1776 Commission”.
Cotton concluded the editorial by writing: “The story of the pilgrims is not a myth or a caricature – it is the living truth of history. In addition, the faith, bravery and wisdom of the Pilgrims places them in the American pantheon. Alongside the Patriots of 1776, the Pilgrims of 1620 deserve the honor of the founders of America.
Cotton’s remarks drew criticism from Democrats who accused him of perpetuating an elementary school narrative that does not exist.
“When your sense of history does not extend beyond your grade 3 coloring books and real history terrifies you,” Rep. Ilhan Omar said on Twitter, responding to his speech.
“I see Tom Cotton and I had the same third grade teacher. Somehow, between then and HARVARD, he managed to never get the rest of the story, ”journalist Stephen Holder tweeted.
Representative Ilhan Omar was among Democrats who accused him of perpetuating an elementary school narrative that does not exist