Martha Huckabay, the president of the Women’s Republican Club of New Orleans, spent her weekend defending slavery.
The saga started earlier this week when the Republican-dominated state legislature was debating a bill banning the teaching of racism or sexism in public schools. How do you teach American History, among other subjects, without having serious discussions about those subjects? Who the hell knows. But that’s what State Rep. Ray Garofalo wants to do with House Bill 564.
Even fellow Republicans recognized this bill as an attempt to white-wash our past, micromanage teachers, and stifle free speech. Garofalo insisted that wasn’t the case at all: He wanted students to learn about slavery! In fact, he wanted them to learn everything about slavery! He wanted them to learn “the good, the bad and the ugly” aspects of slavery.
That’s when Republican State Rep. Stephanie Hilferty chimed in, pointing out “there’s no ‘good’ to slavery, though.”
Garofalo quickly backtracked and said it was just a figure of speech. Of course there was no “good” to slavery, he insisted. He just meant he wasn’t trying to stifle legitimate academic discussions. (I genuinely believe he wasn’t trying to say slavery was good. His bill is still utter trash.)
Hilferty later discussed the controversy on CNN, when she said she was mostly upset that the headlines about this story basically said a Louisiana Republican talked about the “good” of slavery — when she’s trying to fix her party’s reputation for promoting racism. You can even see how one right-wing group criticized Hilferty for being a “Republican in Name Only” in this clip:
Anyway. That brings us to Huckabay, who joined the chorus of critics going after Hilferty for challenging Garofalo in any way whatsoever.
How did Huckabay do it? By saying Hilferty twisted Garofalo’s words… then adding commentary that was batshit crazy.
What is Stephanie Hilferty doing here? Why is she trying to trap a Republican and twist his words?
How does she 100% know there is “no good to slavery” if none of us were around during slavery?
Weren’t some slaves treated really well?
I know in the Bible they were.
Apparently, she needs first-hand documentation to know that being held hostage against your will isn’t ideal. That documentation exists, by the way. Huckabay doesn’t care.
(Interesting how Huckabay knows how great the Bible is given that none of us were around when it was written…)
More to the point: Pointing to the supposedly “good” slavery in the Bible wouldn’t negate the horrific abuse that actual slaves suffered in the U.S. Having the ability to talk about how historical slavery and racism contributed to today’s racial inequalities is important! Yet Republicans don’t want teachers to have those discussions.
Huckabay didn’t stop there. This morning, she went on to say Hilferty was indoctrinated with “leftis marxisum education” while defending Garofalo’s original comment (which, again, he himself took back!):
You are right Stephanie Hilferty “none of us were around when slavery occured.” Slavery goes all they way back to biblical times, and if you’ve read your Bible, you would know that many of the slaves loved their masters, and their masters loved them.
Did an incredible rail road system, created under horrible slavery conditions, and hard working ethics develope?
Did generations of beautiful LIFE come from those who were sold into slavery, from Africa, and sold by Africans, make America the beautiful [Heart-eyes emoji] DIVERS culture it is today?
Was it true that some slaves never wanted to leave theIr plantation because it had become their home?
Were some slaves treated with love and respect by their masters?
If so, is this the “good” part he was reffering too?
Jesus… the grammar is nearly as awful as the message.
Slavery was along long before biblical times. Defending slavery because it gave us the railroad system is appalling. Pretending slavery is a reasonable justification for a hard work ethic is despicable. Citing slavery as a reason for American diversity (which the GOP opposes anyway) is unbelievable.
The fact that some slaves either didn’t want to leave their masters’ homes or accepted their condition isn’t a defense for the “good” of slavery. That there are passages about slavery in the Bible, even those condemning abuse, doesn’t make it okay.
By the way, if you read the comments on Huckabay’s posts, you can see just how insane she is. Whenever people point out the flaws in her arguments, and how there’s nothing “good” about slavery no matter when or where it took place, she just calls them “trolls” or “foolish trolls,” often in ALL CAPS. There’s no reasoning with her because she’s just a right-wing propaganda machine with no ability to say anything sensible.
Ultimately, Huckabay is a perfect example of why students in Louisiana need to learn more about racism and sexism. By censoring those topics, students would run the risk of becoming as ignorant as she is.
(Thanks to Patricia for the link)