We must learn facts about our history
I was moved when I read Heather Smith’s article, “Embrace learning accurate history.” She spoke from her heart about her own education in Salem and her current teaching involvement with Youngstown youth at Rayen Early College. She wondered why she never learned about the John Brown slave rebellion in 1859, and, perhaps more importantly, that a couple of people from Salem had been present at that event, or that she had never heard about the abolitionist newspaper or the underground railroad in her own community.
She reported she was angry that she had not been told a truthful story about her history. She is well aware that Republicans in our state are currently trying to keep young people from knowing the truth about the history of our country. She pointed out that Bill 322 and Bill 327 in Ohio are an attempt to cover over part of the truth.
I, too, was raised to hear only part of my story. I feel this hurts us and prevents us from growing into adults who can be realistic about ourselves, as well as our leaders. We should be told the truth about our history: the good, the bad and the ugly. That way we can embrace the truth about all of us: We are all brothers, created by God, and we are all in this difficult life together.
More than ever we need the truth to guide us. If we are not given the truth about ourselves or about our country, we will fall prey to falsehoods, such as conspiracy theories and lies from our leaders. I like that Jesus said, “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”