Tea Party wants teachers to find good in slavery

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Tennessee teachers shouldn't talk about American slavery and race together. That's what the State's Tea Party is saying.

Its on of a list of the five legislative priorities presented to state legislators by several Tennessee tea parties, includes a proposal to eliminate from history books references to the Founding Fathers owning slaves or encroaching on Native American lands, originally reported by a Memphis newspaper.

We talked to Tea Party leader Hal Rounds Wednesday. He described the way slavery is taught now as race-baiting. When asked if kids are walking out of school thinking our founding fathers were evil, he said "(The kids) are being taught (the Founding Fathers) were hypocrites and slave owners and part of the teachings about slavery was that it was inherently cruel."

Rounds first petitioned the state for the changes last year and is continuing the fight now.

We asked if you can seperate slavery in our country from the centuries old struggle for racial equality, Rounds believes you can adding "White people were whipped to."

Local civil rights activists disagree with Rounds.

Avon Rollins, who marched with Martin Luther King and now runs the Beck Cultural Exchange Center told us "If you don't learn from history you're bound to repeat it. History was a very cruel, very animalistic, and very harsh institution."

He compared diluting the history of American Slavery to ignoring the Holocaust.

Rounds tells us he's gotten a lot of positive feed back from state politicians. No votes to change the state's curriculum are scheduled.

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