There seems to be a disparity amongst American history classes. Textbooks in America are writing different narratives for the same story.
A textbook in San Antonio, Texas was caught teaching from a textbook that highlighted the positive aspects of slavery. Parents complained to the school and the teacher was suspended for conducting the lesson. The superintendant of the school wrote that the teacher had no harmful intent on the context of slavery and an authors of the textbook stated “there is no debate about slavery. It is immoral and a crime against humanity.”
Here is the included description fo slavery according to the Pretice Hall Classics: a History of the United States textbook:
“While there were cruel masters who maimed or even killed their slaves (although killing and maiming were against the law in every state), there were also kind and generous owners. The institution was as complex as the people involved. Though most slaves were whipped at some point in their lives, a few never felt the lash. Nor did all slaves worked in the fields. Some were house servants or skilled artisans. Many may not have even been terribly unhappy with their lot, for they knew no other.”
After reading the text above, students were asked to list the positive and negative components of slavery on a worksheet. 240 students learned that slavery was not completey bad, which is unacceptable. All american need to understand slavery is a massive detriment Afican Americans even many years after the period.
While Pearson, the publisher, responded to the backlash by arguing that the worksheet was not associated with their company. But the textbook itself did not protray slavery as inhumane and immoral. In another statement, Pearson said the textbook did promote an antiquated viewpoint and it was wrong, offensive and long outdated. The issue was published in 2007.
We need to be careful as to what we are administering in educational institutions. No student, school or region should be mislead. American citizens deserve to know the truth about their country’s history.