Becoming Equal Under the Law – Trailer

January 25, 2020

“All men are created equal,
endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights.” I
think that’s one of the most important sentences in
the English language. The consensus was A., slavery
was wrong, but B., it was going to die out of its own weight. Even the Founder who declared
all men are created equal, never freed a single
slave in his lifetime. Even Southern slave owners
recognized that slavery is incompatible with the values
the American Revolution claims to stand for. My great-great-grandfather was
purchased by an Army surgeon. My ancestor was Dred Scott. At first, it was just about
their family, but ultimately it was about a nation. What Dred Scott did was to
say, yes, they said all men are created equal, but
they didn’t mean it. And that led to a grave
perception of a threat. The North finally cared
about slavery in a way they hadn’t before. And then… The Civil War and the
constitutional amendments that followed ended the institution
of slavery, but they did not make the enslaved people or
their descendants truly free. Former slaves are barred
from so many occupations. Segregation becomes
the law of the land. Living under segregation did
something to your self-esteem because I remember as a child
saying well, “I want to go on the roller coaster at the
beach.” And my parents said, “No, we can’t go on that.
You can’t do this.” “No government shall
deny any person the equal protection of the
laws.” Surely, it’s reasonable to interpret that as meaning
that states may not deny women, who are indisputably persons,
a very important equal right, namely, the right to vote. And it all comes down
to that keyword liberty. Freedom needs more than
celebrating; it needs defending… and that takes guts.

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