Are you ready for a hair-on-fire-worthy example of a slobbery apology from an expert in his field for telling the truth, being subsequently demonized by the rabid culture-cancel left, then folding up like a cheap suit as embarrassingly as possible? If not, buckle your seatbelt and hang on, as the president of the American Historical Association (AHA) apologizes for citing historical facts.
In an author’s note attached to his August 17 column titled, Is History History?, AHA president James H. Street profusely apologized for a September article in which he criticized certain incorrect narratives about slavery, including Nikole Hannah-Jones’ widely-discredited 1619 Project, Before he was finished, Street almost made the epic groveling of NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell look like the work of a rank amateur.
Street wrote, in part:
My September Perspectives on History column has generated anger and dismay among many of our colleagues and members. I take full responsibility that it did not convey what I intended and for the harm that it has caused.
I had hoped to open a conversation on how we “do” history in our current politically charged environment. Instead, I foreclosed this conversation for many members, causing harm to colleagues, the discipline, and the Association.
I sincerely regret the way I have alienated some of my Black colleagues and friends. I am deeply sorry. In my clumsy efforts to draw attention to methodological flaws in teleological presentism, I left the impression that questions posed from absence, grief, memory, and resilience somehow matter less than those posed from positions of power.
This absolutely is not true. It wasn’t my intention to leave that impression, but my provocation completely missed the mark.
Once again, I apologize for the damage I have caused to my fellow historians, the discipline, and the AHA. I hope to redeem myself in future conversations with you all. I’m listening and learning.
So what exactly did Sweet so effusively apologize for writing? As transcribed by College Fix, the following three excerpts encapsulate Sweet’s “offending” September column.
Think: a correct critique of the 1619 Project.
“This new history often ignores the values and mores of people in their own times. This is not history; it is dilettantism.”
“The present has been creeping up on our discipline for a long time. Doing history with integrity requires us to interpret elements of the past not through the optics of the present but within the worlds of our historical actors […]”
“When we foreshorten or shape history to justify rather than inform contemporary political positions, we not only undermine the discipline but threaten its very integrity.”
Aside from the reality that Street’s September column was historically spot-on, not unlike how Roger Goodell was right when he came down on Anthem-kneeling Colin Kaepernick, only to later grovel at the altar of Black Lives Matter, Street — again like Goodell — cowardly caved to the cancel-culture insanity.
As noted by College Fix, Sweet in his September column also wrote about a trip to an old slave depot in Ghana, where he said: “American influence was everywhere.” The tour’s guide “claimed that ‘Ghanaians’ sent their ‘servants’ into chattel slavery unknowingly, yet made no reference to “warfare or Indigenous slavery, [or] histories that interrupt assumptions of ancestral connection between modern-day Ghanaians and visitors from the diaspora.”
Sweet also touched on the 2022 film, The Woman King, which strongly suggests the west African kingdom of Dahomey was opposed to the European slave trade — but in fact “promoted it.”
Nonetheless, two days after Sweet’s August 17 column was published, he wrote the groveling apology.
“A president’s monthly column, one of the privileges of elected office,” he wrote near the end, “provides a megaphone to the membership and the discipline. The views and opinions expressed in that column are not those of the Association.”
This is obviously factual, given that the cowardly AHA brought the hammer down on Sweet for his original “views and opinions” stating historical and present-day facts. Yet, Street continued, “If my ham-fisted attempt at provocation has proven anything, it is that the AHA membership is as vocal and robust as ever.”
The bottom line:
Nonsense, Mr. Green; the AHA membership has become infested with members of the cancel-culture crowd who seek to destroy America as we know it. You know it, as well — you wrote about it — including their insidious plan to do a complete rewrite of American history as we correctly learned it.
James H. Sweet, as was the case with Roger Goodell, NBA Commissioner Nate Silver, and other “influencers” like them, sold their souls to the rabid left when the pressure came.