Last week, The New Yorker ran an interview with San Francisco school board President Gabriela López, a 30-year-old former teacher leading the district’s charge to bury American history. It’s eye-opening, to say the least.
López was elected on a campaign to cancel history. Under her leadership, the nation’s seventh-largest school district has spent its time not teaching its 57,000 students — who have been “learning” online for nearly a full year — but plotting to take the names of historic figures down from more than 40 district buildings. The names targeted for removal include Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Paul Revere, and Democrat U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein….
Some of the claims San Francisco’s school board have made about historical figures such as Revere and Lincoln to justify removing their names are simply false. New Yorker interviewer Isaac Chotiner asks López about that.
She replies: “So then you go into discrediting the work that they’re [the school board is] doing, and the process that they put together in order to create this list. So when we begin to have these conversations, and we’re pointing to that, and we’re given the reasoning and they’re sharing why they made this choice and why they’re putting it out there, I don’t want to get into a process where we then discredit the work that this group has done….
I know the committee is still meeting, and they’re still open to that [concerns about historical inaccuracy],” she expanded. “So it’s not that it’s not a concern. I think it’s something that’s missing without a dialogue…So here’s my piece. The real issue is how we are challenged when we talk about racism. And how then the masses come out in order to combat this, when it’s an idea that harms what we’re used to. My current situation is sharing with people very simply that I don’t think it’s appropriate to have symbols of racism and white-supremacy culture.”
In other words, it doesn’t matter that Abraham Lincoln was the pivotal figure in freeing African-American slaves and that he intervened to save Native Americans from death. It matters that to the left he is a symbol of “white supremacy,” likely because of his commitment to the U.S. Constitution and the natural rights philosophy it expresses. It doesn’t matter if you free literal slaves if you do so while disagreeing with leftist ideology. Ideology is more important than reality….
The city of San Francisco recently sued the San Francisco Unified School District to try to get the schools open. San Francisco Mayor London Breed says “data show that Black, Latino, and Asian students, especially those who are low-income, have fared worse than white and wealthier students during the distanced learning.” The same is true worldwide.
The San Francisco schools Google document entry on why they hate Lincoln starts out: “Abraham Lincoln is not seen as much of a hero at all among many American Indian Nations and Native peoples of the United States.”
When Chotiner asks how she views Lincoln “generally,” López uses similar language: “I think Lincoln gets more praise than the . . . how can I say this? Yeah. I don’t know. I don’t think that . . . Lincoln is not someone that I typically tend to admire or see as a hero, because of these specific instances where he has contributed to the pain of the decimation of people — that’s not something that I want to ignore. It’s something that I’m learning about and that I know it’s not often spoken about….”
The above comes from a Feb. 10 story in The Federalist.