On Bachmann’s list of ‘must read’ books; ‘Blacks were better off under slavery’
In 2002, then-state Sen. Bachmann’s campaign posted a ‘must-read’ list of books on her web site. Included in the list were the Declaration of Independence, The Federalist Papers, and a book titled, ‘Call of Duty: The Sterling Nobility of Robert E. Lee,’ authored by J. Steven Wilkins. The Lee biography includes this apologetic passage:
Northerners were often shocked and offended by the familiarity that existed as a matter of course between the whites and blacks of the old South. This was one of the surprising and unintended consequences of slavery. Slavery, as it operated in the pervasively Christian society which was the old South, was not an adversarial relationship founded on racial animosity. In fact, it bred on the whole, not contempt, but, over time, mutual respect. This produced a mutual esteem of the sort that always results when men give themselves to a common cause.
The credit for this startling reality must go to the Christian faith.
Wilkins goes on to claim that slavery existed on a ‘relationship of trust and esteem,’ that positive race relations may have progressed further if the pro-slavery South had won the war, and that Lee, despite being a slave-owner himself, ‘never held any animosity for blacks.’