Bowman Blasts GOP’s Attempts To Whitewash Black History

Bowman held a press conference to reintroduce the African American History Act and rebuke DeSantis and the GOP.

Photo: Office of Congressman Jamaal Bowman

WASHINGTON DC – Thursday, amidst manufactured controversy from Florida Governor Ron DeSantis over AP African American History curriculum, Congressman Jamaal Bowman (an educator and former school principal) held a press conference to reintroduce the African American History Act and rebuke DeSantis and the GOP.

In under four-and-a-half minutes, Rep. Bowman blasted the GOP’s fear of truth leading to the DeSantis-led scheme to whitewash and undermine African American history, present day attempts to oppress and suppress Black people, the removal of Congresswoman Ilhan Omar – the only African refugee in Congress – and the House’s bad-faith denunciation of socialism.

Watch the full video here:

On the whitewashing of African American history curriculum:
“Black history is American history. And American history encompasses the history of everyone. And I want to speak directly to the Republican Party. I’m smiling on them – because some of the things they say and do, you gotta laugh to keep from punching somebody in the face or to keep from crying.”

“The Republican Party and Ron DeSantis: Do me a favor. Pick up a book and read a book, read a couple of books, read an African American history curriculum. So you can understand that the birth of European history started on the continent in Africa. And we know that you were trying to erase that history, because you don’t want Black people to have knowledge of self. You want to oppress, suppress and control us.”

“But guess what, DeSantis and Republican Party? It ain’t happening. We ain’t going back to slavery, when it was illegal for us to learn how to read and write – when we tried to learn how to read and write, you chased us, raped us, and lynched us. We’re not going back to slavery, Ron DeSantis. We ain’t going back to Jim Crow. We ain’t going back. This isn’t Make America Great Again, to be the kind of America you wanted it to be. We are standing here enlightened, empowered, and woke as hell. So you can continue with your anti-woke agenda. But the only people who ain’t woke is you.”

On the removal of Congresswoman Ilhan Omar from the Foreign Affairs Committee:
“[Rep. Omar] speaks truth to power and uplifts our entire nation by holding us accountable to our ideals as a nation. [The GOP] are scared of that truth.”

On the House’s disingenuous vote ‘denouncing socialism’:
“You are scared of that truth. That’s why you continue to live a lie on the House floor today, you are equating socialism with communism and dictatorship. That is not even what socialism is. But if y’all read books, you would know the difference.”

Then, quoting Nas’ song ‘I Can’:

“Before we came to this country / We were kings and queens, never porch monkeys

There was empires in Africa called Kush / Timbuktu, where every race came to get books

To learn from Black teachers, who taught Greeks and Romans / Asian Arabs and gave them gold, when

Gold was converted to money it all changed / Money then became empowerment for Europeans”

“And [the ruling class is] still using that money to oppress us under the thumb of plantation capitalism. We know your game, and we’re calling your game out.”

In conclusion, to GOP leadership:

“Stop lying. Read a book. You aren’t never, ever, ever going to take us back to slavery and Jim Crow. And you are never going to kill us. We don’t die, we multiply.”

“Get up out of here with your nonsense.”

About Jamaal Bowman
Congressman Jamaal Bowman was an educator and advocate for public schools for over 20 years and previously served as principal for the Cornerstone Academy for Social Action (CASA), a public middle school he founded in 2009 in the Baychester neighborhood of The Bronx. Rep. Bowman is a life-long New Yorker who lives in Yonkers with his wife and children.

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