Washington's Name Seen as Sullied; Founding Fathers Are Victims of Historical Revisionism, Conferees Told

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), February 23, 2004 | Go to article overview

Washington's Name Seen as Sullied; Founding Fathers Are Victims of Historical Revisionism, Conferees Told


Byline: Robert Stacy McCain, THE WASHINGTON TIMES

George Washington has gone from hero to villain in the eyes of historians because of political correctness, a history professor said at a weekend conference in Herndon.

Washington's reputation has been destroyed by [thorn]cultural Marxists," who have decided that because [thorn]the father of our country owned slaves [he] is not fit to have his name on a grammar school," said Roger D. McGrath, who teaches at California State University-Northridge.

Applying a politically correct standard to history [thorn]eliminates nearly every white man from our pantheon of heroes" and is [thorn]part of an effort to deconstruct Western civilization," Mr. McGrath told the American Renaissance (AR) conference.

He cited a 1997 decision of school board officials in New Orleans to remove Washington's name from an elementary school and quoted the board president: [thorn]The idea of kids going to a school named after a slave owner was demeaning. We wanted the kids to identify with role models from their own heritage."

Such judgments, Mr. McGrath said, mean that children must reject as heroes nearly all the Founding Fathers, as well as early American leaders such as Andrew Jackson.

[thorn]South of the Mason-Dixon Line, most prominent and wealthy men were slaveholders; most men who lived on the frontier were Indian fighters; nearly all white men everywhere considered the Negro race inferior," Mr. McGrath said. [thorn]If historians or others accept politically correct standards and superimpose them on men who lived 100 or 200 years ago, they will be led, inexorably, to the destruction of those same men."

Mr. McGrath is author of the 1984 book [thorn]Gunfighters, Highwaymen & Vigilantes" and is considered an authority on the history of America's Western frontier.

A Marine veteran, Mr. McGrath blamed political correctness for the omission of military figures such as World War II heroes Pappy Boyington and Audie Murphy from history textbooks today. …

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