Ben Carson Clarifies Slave Immigrants Comment
Ben Carson is explaining his controversial comments about slaves. This week, the newly appointed Housing and Urban Development Secretary referred to slaves as “immigrants” while speaking to department employees. He stated,
That’s what America is about, a land of dreams and opportunity. There were other immigrants who came here in the bottom of slave ships, worked even longer, even harder for less. But they too had a dream that one day their sons, daughters, grandsons, granddaughters, great-grandsons, great-granddaughters, might pursue prosperity and happiness in this land.
Here’s a clip.
Ben Carson at HUD: “There were other immigrants who came here in the bottom of slave ships, worked even longer, even harder for less.” pic.twitter.com/YolvoZQHX7
— Bradd Jaffy (@BraddJaffy) March 6, 2017
Carson is now clarifying he statement, explaining:
I’m proud of the courage and perseverance of Black Americans and their incomprehensible struggle from slavery to freedom. I’m proud that our ancestors overcame the evil and repression that we know as slavery.
The slave narrative and immigrant narrative are two entirely different experiences. Slaves were ripped from their families and their homes and forced against their will after being sold into slavery by slave traders.
The Immigrants made the choice to come to America. They saw this country as the land of opportunity. In contrast, slaves were forced here against their will and lost all their opportunities. We continue to live with that legacy.
The two experiences should never be intertwined, not forgotten, as we demand the necessary progress towards an America that’s inclusive and provides access to equal opportunity for all.
We should revel in the fact that although we got here through different routes, we have many things in common now that should unite us in our mission to have a land where there is liberty and justice for all.
Dr. Ben Carson
Secretary of HUD