Tag Archives: Frederick Douglass

Presidential gaffe inspires a nation to know Frederick Douglass

Frederick Douglass is an example of somebody who has done an amazing job and is being recognized more and more, I notice……Donald J. Trump

To be sure Frederick Douglass is better known now to most Americans, in light of journalists, teachers and the general public’s reaction to the President’s display of ignorance of the history of the nation he purports to “rule.”   And yet we all have more to learn.

Fortunately, resources  about this great American abound. Just last week my email included a link to this lovely video narrative of the life of Frederick Douglass produced by the National Archives. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YxZClqEnRwQ

This led me to a corollary video that treats of Douglass as the “conscience of the abolitionist movement: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fj-gz3u-1jM

And to this, one of many YouTube adaptations of picture books that tells the story of Frederick Douglass: — https://youtu.be/oN-QqKsgyL4

As well as to this impassioned speech, delivered by Douglass on July 4, 1852. http://www.historyplace.com/speeches/douglass.htm

And to the Frederick Douglass Honor Society, a venture created by residents of his birthplace in Talbot County, Maryland – who knew! http://www.frederickdouglasshonorsociety.org/douglass-history.html

Needless to say, the royal gaffe has fostered a flood of responses in the press. It’s informative to read the words of contemporary writers whose response has been to celebrate Black History Month 2017 by expanding their readers’  appreciation of Frederick Douglass. The problem is that it’s a challenge to focus on the contributions of Douglass rather than on the unfortunate gaps in the leader’s understanding of American history. Here is just one of scores of tributes to this brilliant visionary. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/06/opinion/a-lesson-in-black-history.html

To really learn about the writings, the life and unique contributions of Frederick Douglass there is no better path than to dip into the resources of the Library of Congress which has made vast Douglass-related resources accessible online. Though the wealth of information – books, manuscripts, videos, guides and more — may seem overwhelming, all is meticulously organized – and you may certain that there is something in the collection to pique the interest of every learner, including candidates for public office, who harbor a passion to know the story of this democracy. https://www.loc.gov/rr/program/bib/douglass/