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A statement from Pastor Sam Jones during the 1619 Project subcommittee in the Iowa House:

I am here today to speak in support of House File 222 and to oppose the use of the 1619 project in our school system.

The 1619 Project paints a fallacious picture of the United States by using standpoint epistemology and Critical Race Theory to reinterpret the founding of our nation and key principles that were once woven into the fabric of our society. Specifically the 1619 project seeks to reinterpret history to tell children that America was founded on racism and founded to continue racism and that there remains a system of racism and oppression.

The 1619 project teaches:

  • That America was founded as a slaveocracy
  • The motivation of the Founding Fathers in 1776 was to continue slavery
  • The enumerated ideals in the declaration of independence — specifically that all men are created equal — were false when they were written.
  • And that Capitalism is a form of slavery

Here is a quote from the 1619 project that shows its historical inaccuracies:

“Our Declaration of Independence, signed on July 4, 1776, proclaims that ‘all men are created equal’ and ‘endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights.’ But the white men who drafted those words did not believe them to be true for the hundreds of thousands of black people in their midst.”

Three of the Five drafters of the Declaration of Independence — Roger Sherman, Benjamin Franklin, and John Adams — didn’t own slaves and Benjamin Franklin became the president of the first abolitionist society.

A great many other Founding Fathers also opposed Slavery:

  • Samuel Adams
  • William Cushing a lawyer, jurist, opponent of slavery, member of the Constitutional Convention of Massachusetts, Chief Justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Court, First Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, appointed by George Washington, Acting Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, 1794.  Wrote in the case Commonwealth v. Jennings, 1783, which abolished slavery in the state of Massachusetts.  Cushing wrote:  “As to the doctrine of slavery and the right of Christians to hold Africans in perpetual servitude, and sell and treat them as we do our horses and cattle, that… has been heretofore countenanced by the Province Laws… a different idea has taken place with the people of America more favorable to the natural rights of mankind, and to that natural, innate desire of Liberty, with which Heaven… has inspired all the human race.  And upon this ground our Constitution of Government, by which the people of this Commonwealth have solemnly bound themselves, sets out with declaring that all men are born free and equal—and that every subject is entitled to liberty, and to have it guarded by the laws, as well as life and property—in short is totally repugnant to the idea of being born slaves… the idea of slavery is inconsistent with our own conduct and constitution.”
  • John Jay who attempted to end slavery in 1777 and 1785.  In 1799, he signed into law the Act for the Gradual Abolition of Slavery, which eventually freed all the slaves in New York.  This act was arguably the most comprehensive and largest emancipation in North America before the Civil War.
  • John Quincy Adams who became known as “The Hell-hound of Abolition” for constantly bringing up the Abolition of Slavery in spite of a gag-order on the issue in Congress.

As mentioned the 1619 Project uses Critical Race Theory to reinterpret history. What is Critical Race Theory? Critical race theory is part of a deconstructionists worldview and is rooted in postmodernism. Critical race theory emphasizes experience over argument and has four main premises:

  1. Human relationships should be fundamentally understood in terms of power dynamics witch differentiate groups into the oppressors and the oppressed.
  2. Our identity as individuals is inseparable from our group identity.
  3. All oppressed groups find their fundamental unity in their common experience of oppression.
  4. The fundamental human project is liberation from all forms of oppression, consequently the fundamental virtue is standing in solidarity against the oppressor.

As you can tell the main theme of this theory is oppressed vs. oppressor. To anyone who has studied history at all that should sound familiar as it is echoing the philosophy of Karl Marx. Marx of course only applied this theory to economics so we cannot rightly say that the 1619 Project promotes classical marxism rather they draw from Italian Philosopher Antonio Gramsci who applied Marx’s philosophy to culture and created cultural or Neo-Marxism. This is what the 1619 Project promotes.

With Critical Race Theory the 1619 Project sets its eyes on criticizing and ultimately deconstructing Western Civilization. At the heart of Western Civilization we find a monotheistic view of ethics specifically found in the Ten Commandments. With this in mind and the 1619 project’s open despising of capitalism we can see that the project’s goal is similar to Karl Marx’s who proclaimed that his goal in life was to “dethrone God and destroy Capitalism.” This is why as a pastor I care enough about this bill to speak out in favor of it.

Today I want to plead with you to love your country, your neighbor, and the truth by standing against this horrific project by supporting HF 222.

Author: Sam Jones

Pastor Sam completed an intense pastoral internship at Hagerman Baptist Church and served as a chaplain at Heritage Care Center in Iowa Falls, Iowa before accepting the call to pastor at Faith Baptist Church in Hudson, Iowa. He loves people and his goal is to make disciples of Christ by personally, prayerfully, and persistently investing the Word of God into others.