How Alabama taught its children to be racists

This article talks about indoctrination education in Alabama, concentrating on an Alabama History textbook used in that state’s Fourth Grade state history classes from 1957 to 1970.  It certainly explains a great deal.

Here are some examples:

“One of the little Negro boys is called ‘Jig’ He got that name because he dances so well when the Negroes play their banjos.”

But they feel sorry for the slaveholders:  “No plantation had a model group of slaves, for planters had to buy whatever slaves they could get. Some slaves were good workers and very obedient. Many took pride in what they did, and loved their cabins and the plantation as much as if they actually owned them. Others were lazy, disobedient, and sometimes vicious.”

It helps explain why a number of folks have a perverted view of history:  “The Southerners had a right under the law to own slaves, and the Southern states had a right under the law to leave the United States. Many Southerners did not want to leave the Union. But when Abraham Lincoln was elected president in 1860, the South felt that they had to leave the Union to keep their rights.”

And they even find the KKK to be heroic: “After a while the Klan struck fear in the hearts of the “carpetbaggers” and other lawless men who had taken control of the state…. The Negroes who had been fooled by the false promises of the “carpetbaggers” decided to get themselves jobs and settle down to make an honest living.”

Explains a great deal, doesn’t it?



  1. jfepperson · · Reply

    Sadly, it does.

  2. Anne Peasley · · Reply

    I believe the movie Gone With the Wind did damage–far more than he book.

  3. Wow!
    This book and the movie ‘Gone With the Wind’ are just two examples of the constant validation and justification used constantly from politics, religion and other aspects of culture to reinforce these ideas.

    Thanks to Al and his efforts in sharing objective historical facts and evidence it is refreshing to me that his efforts in sharing is in such stark contrast to the voices I hear trying to revise and revive
    some warped “honorable” view of the “dishonorable” acts we see in the efforts to sanitize the institution of slavery and this racism intertwined in the fabric of American culture.

    From Al’s many posts I find it so interesting how Jefferson Davis and the voices who stated plainly why they were seceding from the Union in 1861 tried to sanitize all of this later in the “Lost Cause.”

    Thanks Al

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