Trump Announces Members of 1776 Commission

Last week, President Trump announced his picks to staff the 1776 Commission. Larry P. Arnn, Hillsdale College president, will serve as the chairman of the 18-person commission. Trump created the commission by executive order back in November to combat the narrative spun by the 1619 Project that the United States is rotten to the core. According the order:

[I]n recent years, a series of polemics grounded in poor scholarship has vilified our Founders and our founding. Despite the virtues and accomplishments of this Nation, many students are now taught in school to hate their own country, and to believe that the men and women who built it were not heroes, but rather villains. This radicalized view of American history lacks perspective, obscures virtues, twists motives, ignores or distorts facts, and magnifies flaws, resulting in the truth being concealed and history disfigured. Failing to identify, challenge, and correct this distorted perspective could fray and ultimately erase the bonds that knit our country and culture together.

The 1776 Commission, among other things, is charged to produce a report on “the core principles of the American founding and how these principles may be understood to further enjoyment of ‘the blessings of liberty’ and to promote our striving ‘to form a more perfect Union.'” It is also supposed to “advise upon, and promote other activities to support public knowledge and patriotic education on the American Revolution and the American founding.”

It’s unfortunate that Trump did not create and appoint the commission earlier in his term. With Biden’s presidency and his obeisance to wokeness, it is unlikely that the Commission will ever meet or function as intended. Biden will likely scrap it.

No matter what Biden does, I would suggest that the Commission (defunct or extant) meet, work, and produce a report and advice of the kind requested by President Trump. With the academy, media, and bureaucracy firmly enthralled with the Left’s cultural Marxist agenda, we need a powerful restatement of First Principles and guidance on how teachers can introduce students to the rich history of the American Revolution.

William J. Watkins, Jr. is a Research Fellow at the Independent Institute and author of the Independent books, Crossroads for Liberty, Reclaiming the American Revolution, and Patent Trolls.
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