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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 7/9/20

From Day One The USA Was Built on Genocide, Slavery and Imperialism

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From day one, the United States was built on genocide, slavery, and imperialism. Without acknowledging and knowing, in all of its parameters, how those three pillars were and continue to be the foundation posts of America, no real change can come about. It's the responsibility of everyone in this country, no matter their ethnicity or background, to confront that history in order to find the real ways to break from it. Today's battles over statues commemorating the Confederacy and the "Founding Fathers" highlight this urgency.

The genocide of native peoples of this land is on the top of the list. Contemplate, for a moment, this description by the History Channel: "From the time Europeans arrived on American shores, the frontierthe edge territory between white man's civilization and the untamed natural worldbecame a shared space of vast, clashing differences that led the U.S. government to authorize over 1,500 wars, attacks and raids on Indians, the most of any country in the world against its indigenous people. By the close of the Indian Wars in the late 19th century, fewer than 238,000 indigenous people remained, a sharp decline from the estimated 5 million to 15 million living in North America when Columbus arrived in 1492. " Over one thousand five hundred wars.

I have begun producing short videos based an extraordinary series called "American Crime" that you can find at The site vividly describes 100 cases of horrific crimes committed by this country, and that just touches the surface. Case #44The Trail of Tears is the second video I have produced, and was made in the context of Trump's glorification of Andrew Jackson, his favorite president. I produced the first, on the Tulsa Race Riot (, in "honor" of Trump's campaign rally there. It's not hard to find the connections between the past criminality of this country and the horrors perpetuated today.

TrailofTears from Displaced Films on Vimeo.

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David Zeiger, Producer/Director/Writer

Guggenheim Fellow David Zeiger has been making documentary films and series for 25 years. His 2006 film, Sir! No Sir!, which told the long-suppressed story (more...)

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From Day One The USA Was Built on Genocide, Slavery and Imperialism

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