Nikole Hannah-Jones to Critics on Her Error Tweeting Incorrect Year for Start of Civil War: ‘It Is What It Is’

Nikole Hannah-Jones
Alice Vergueiro/Abraji/Flickr

Nikole Hannah-Jones, the non-historian who served as the primary author of the widely-discredited “1619 Project,” reacted to Twitter users this week, who called her out on her failure to provide the correct year for the start of the Civil War, with the statement, “It is what it is.”

BizPacReview called attention to Hannah-Jones’ tweet in which she stated, “We did not stop the expansion of slavery, and enslavers dominated the presidency, Senate and Supreme Court until 1865, when the North was reluctantly drawn into a war that ultimately ended slavery.”

After some other Twitter users noted her factual error, Hannah-Jones responded, “It was poorly worded, I meant until 1865 ended the war, which the North had been reluctantly drawn into.”

“I realized people want to catch me up,” she added. “I doubt anyone believes I do not know when the Civil War started. But, it is what it is.”

In an exclusive comment to Breitbart News, historian Mary Grabar, Ph.D., author of Debunking The 1619 Project: Exposing the Plan to Divide America, said, “I am not surprised.” Grabar said:

In Nikole Hannah-Jones’s conspiratorial view of history there is only one date that matters: 1619. As she has stated on MSNBC in speeches, and on Twitter in the past, ‘1619 explains January 6,’ ‘1619 explains the death of Breonna Taylor,’ and ‘the legacy of 1619,’ she said after the Kyle Rittenhouse verdict, was ‘in this country you can even kill white people and get away with it if those white people are fighting for Black lives (HJ tweet).’

“In other words, 1619 explains everything,” Grabar concluded. “That’s all you need to know in her view. The 1619 Project is rife with errors, as I pointed out and corrected in my book.”

Other Twitter users have since continued to comment on Hannah-Jones’ error:

In April, the Biden education department proposed a rule urging the development of “culturally responsive teaching” in American History and Civics and held up the “1619 Project” as a model for schools to teach children the United States is fundamentally a racist nation.

The U.S. Education Department announced the rule is in keeping with President Joe Biden’s executive order titled “Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities Through the Federal Government”:

[T]here is growing acknowledgement [SIC] of the importance of including, in the teaching and learning of our country’s history, both the consequences of slavery, and the significant contributions of Black Americans to our society. This acknowledgement [SIC] is reflected, for example, in the New York Times‘ landmark ‘1619 Project’ and in the resources of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History.

Hannah-Jones was awarded a Pulitzer Prize for her “1619 Project” even though, following criticism from noted historians of all political stripes, the newspaper ultimately scrapped the project’s central theme that the true founding of America was 1619, the year the first slaves were brought to the colonies.

Nevertheless, some school districts have already incorporated Hannah-Jones’ work into their history and civics curricula.

Peter Kirsanow, a member of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, said in September 2020, the “1619 Project” is “one of the most significant attempts to propagandize history” he has seen in his lifetime.

This is “an all-hands-on-deck situation,” he warned during a National Association of Scholars web conference.

“We have seen what I believe to be a corruption of history, a distortion of history,” he asserted, adding that Hannah-Jones “is using the tools of a 20th-century form of oppression, to consciously, or not, present her version of, and that of many on the left’s, version of slavery in the United States.”


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