1619, 1776 and the United States of America

“Progressives” claim the U.S. began in 1619, with the arrival of the first enslaved Africans in Virginia. Yes, the Founding endorsed slavery, but to focus only on that is to ignore the early debate. “Slavery is such an atrocious debasement of human nature,” said Benjamin Franklin in a November 1789 speech demanding its “very extirpation.” And he was not alone.