Is America a racist country?

Decades ago, I read a column by Andrew Young, the former Atlanta Mayor and UN representative, in which he wrote that you should never trust anyone who says they aren’t racist. You should say I’m working on my racism.

Recently, the former South Carolina governor and current GOP presidential candidate Nikki Haley omitted to mention that slavery was a cause of the Civil War (it was *the* cause–see the Cornerstone Document, as just one exhibit). Now, Haley says this: “We’re not a racist country, Brian. We’ve never been a racist country.”

As a country, the United States was conceived in chattel slavery. That’s encoded in the Constitution. Those slaves weren’t White, they were Black, and the reason for their enslavement was racist, full stop.

Never mind that the indigenous people of the continent were ethnically cleansed for racist reasons.

The United States has, for most of its history, been a racist country. Not just a nation of racists, but a nation with racist policies. Shame on Nikki Haley for denying that history. She needs to work harder on her racism.