Our problem isn’t “erasing history.” Our problem is not knowing history.
Clint Smith reflected on his visit to the Whitney Plantation in his book, How the Word is Passed:
“I thought of how I had grown up in Louisiana and had never been taught that the largest slave rebellion in US history happened just miles from the city that raised me. I had never been taught that the Louisiana Purchase was a direct result of the Haitian Revolution, the uprising that laid the groundwork for all the slave revolts that followed in its wake.”
We need to admit, as whites, that we just don’t know history. We have nostalgia. And for very childish and insecure reasons, we are in a “battle” to hold tight to our nostalgia and drown out a more full history that would help us be better. We are fearful of losing our status and power. We are missing a more full picture of what is possible in our world in the process.