It was just six days ago that former Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson found himself in hot water after weighing in on the U.S.’s decision to put Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill. He stated that perhaps the $2 bill would have been a better place for her but now insists that his words were taken out of context.
On Tuesday, Carson wrote an op-ed for IJ Review that reiterates his original stance that being placed on the $20 bill is not befitting the legacy that Harriet Tubman left behind. It seems that Carson is trying changed his belief, between the video that showed him saying that a lesser bill would be a better fit for Tubman, to now insisting that being placed on any bill at all would be a desecration of all that Harriet Tubman stood for. He wrote that having her on the $20 bill would only be making her the “new face of debt slavery.”
In Carson’s op-ed, he attempts to clear up any misunderstanding that may have arisen from his implication that the very rarely used $2 bill is a better place for a freedom fighter such as Harriet Tubman by not acknowledging that he had said any such thing at all. Instead, he is now stating that the Obama administration is only seeking to place her on the $20 bill as a political tool and she deserves better.
“Harriet Tubman, one of America’s truest and most revered freedom fighters, deserves a far more fitting tribute than to be sacrificed on the altar of political expediency by placing her on the twenty dollar bill.”
The famous neurosurgeon made mention of how as a freedom fighter, Harriet Tubman fought not just against enemies of the United States but also against enemies of humanitarianism, the men who “erected a greedy and cruel system of theft and oppression in the form of slavery.” He believes that in today’s world, Americans are being enslaved by their government and that the national debt doubling over the past 20 years is something we should all let “sink in” before embracing the empty gesture that putting Tubman on the $20 bill is.
“Harriet Tubman would likely be turning over in her grave if she knew she would be the new face of American debt slavery. She would revile the cheap trick being pulled on African Americans in getting them to support this nearly bankrupt symbol of American debt.”
Mediaite pointed out the insensitivity that fairly flowed out of Carson’s lost cause to redeem himself as a black man who seemed to think so little of a woman who made such a difference in the fight against slavery. Carson wrote in how “three years of slave labor” is what it would take for the average American to repay the debt they are being born with.
Of course, Carson never makes mention of the fact that $20 played a significant role in Tubman’s life, what with her earning $20 as a pension for her services in the war and was the amount needed to free her own father from slavery. Her descendants have also raised no alarm over the conductor of the Underground Railroad being on a $20 bill.
Carson no doubt believed that Tuesday’s piece was well thought out and captivating, but while it certainly made mention of the significance of the fight that Tubman had in aiding the escape of over 300 slaves through the Underground Railroad, it still fails to show that Carson’s resistance is in any way justified. Carson ends his op-ed piece by insisting that we should “not disgrace Harriet Tubman by symbolically linking her with a nearly bankrupt instrument of slavery and debt.”
Many have suggested that Carson, who ended his run for the Presidential seat and is now supporting the controversial and much protested against Donald Trump, was stating those beliefs as a way to ensure that he remains in Trump’s favor so as to obtain, as The Inquisitr previously said, “a hypothetical job in a hypothetical Donald Trump administration.”
It is interesting to note that in all his explanations of why Harriet Tubman should not be placed on any currency, the former presidential candidate failed to complain about the presence of any other historical figure being on the bills. In the end, it was announced that Harriet Tubman would not be getting the $20 bill to herself but would instead share it with Andrew Jackson.
[Photo Courtesy of Alex Wong/Getty Images]