The Corner

U.S.

‘Thomas Jefferson Must Stand’

I wrote about the assault on Jefferson today:

Would we have preferred that all of America’s 18th-century slave owners were intellectually consistent and hewed solely to the doctrine of white supremacy? Or, do we demand that all our heroes be spotless, uncomplicated, and without sin? There are such people, but most of them have not been notable statesmen.

That Jefferson was deeply compromised by the slave system and yet rose above his own sectional and selfish interests to enunciate timeless principles should be considered an accomplishment, not a reason to relegate him to the ash heap.

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