To the editor: I appreciated getting a July 4 contact from my elected U.S. representative, Fred Keller. He sent a short video entitled, “Happy Independence Day.” Mr. Keller thanked all who sacrificed and made America the great country it is today. I appreciated him reminding his constituents of our shared history, but all of his photographs showed all white men (Continental Congress signers, Gettysburg soldiers, Iwo Jima’s flag raisers, NYC steelworkers and a moon astronaut).
I realize that many American history textbooks neglect the contributions made to the USA by many different groups — women, Black Americans, the native people who settled here first, and the many peoples of color who’ve come to America over the last 400 years. All Americans would include photos of the wives and servants who cooked, washed and raised the Continental Congress’ children. And the 198,000 Black men who fought in the Civil War (10% of Union troops). And the quarter million Filipino Americans and 22% of Chinese Americans who served in World War II. And Cesar Chavez, the Mexican-American labor organizer who founded the United Farm Workers of America. And the Black female “human computers” who helped NASA get to the moon. Those who were left out are being included in newer, more historically accurate history books.