The Corner


Countering the Victimhood Culture

An illustration of the Declaration of Independence against the backdrop of an American flag (smartstock/Getty Images)

Starting in grade school and continuing on through college, many young Americans get steady doses of the Left’s victimhood culture that divides people into oppressor and victim classes. It has one big point: to make students believe that America has been so awful that we must tear everything down and replace it with omnipotent government under “progressive” control.

That project is shockingly far along, but finally there is some serious pushback. In today’s Martin Center article, Jenna Robinson writes about Bob Woodson’s 1776 Unites.

She states, “The 1776 Unites project, which celebrated its one-year anniversary on February 18, presents an antidote to the culture of victimhood, especially as it has been directed at black Americans. The project tells the story that The New York Times left out of its 1619 project narrative: ‘a story of Black America highlighted by resilience, perseverance, and strength—a true American story!’”

Yes — the true American story is not exclusively bad, as the leftists want students to think, but is mostly positive. Millions of “people of color” from all around the globe found that the United States, with economic liberty, limited government, and the rule of law, was exactly what they needed for success in life. Instead of yet more government, what people of color (and everyone else) need is more freedom.

Robinson quotes Beth Feeley, a senior adviser at the Woodson Center: “We acknowledge that racial discrimination exists—and work towards diminishing it. But we dissent from contemporary groupthink and rhetoric about race, class, and American history that defames our national heritage, divides our people, and instills helplessness among those who already hold within themselves the grit and resilience to better their lot in life.”

This is certain to infuriate the grievance peddlers — bravo.

Robinson optimistically concludes, “As the 1776 Unites project launches more content for educators and students, it will be an important contributor to combatting victimhood culture and groupthink on campus.”

George Leef is the the director of editorial content at the James G. Martin Center for Academic Renewal.


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