My Letter to Martin Bashir

by Shaker Mod aforalpha

[Content Note: Misogyny; slavery; violence; dehumanization.]

Dear Martin Bashir,

I don't watch your show, but it has come to my attention that recently you set out to explain to Sarah Palin the horrors of slavery. To conclude your history lesson you suggested that she would be deserving of the degrading and violent treatment that a particular slave owner preferred.

I take it as read that Sarah Palin either does not understand or, more likely, care, what the true nature of slavery was and is. But if you think for even a second, it's okay to wish that kind of abuse, exploitation, and humiliation on anyone, even to make a rhetorical point, then YOU haven't understood.

Your comments trivialize the history of slavery, the present reality of the same, and the enduring consequences of the belief that some people have the right to own other people. And in exploiting the degradation and dehumanization that Darby and Hector were subject to in their lives in order to commit an act of symbolic violence against a woman whose political beliefs you disagree with, you stood up to be counted among those who believe that people are NOT all equal in dignity and deserving of respect.

The lesson to take from the Thistlewood diary, which you seem to have missed, is that we are all people and it is of the utmost urgency that we never forget that.

Sarah Palin is a person, Mr. Bashir.


P.S. Joy Reid should always have had your show.

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