“IN A GRAVEYARD in the village of Weybridge, Vermont, stands an unusual headstone. It is inscribed with the names of two women, Sylvia Drake and Charity Bryant, who were born during the Revolutionary era and died in the middle of the 19th century. The women were pillars of their community for four and a half decades … They were also, according to their own understanding and that of those around them, a married couple.”

Historian Rachel Hope Cleves uncovers the fascinating story of same sex marriage in Vermont, 1807. (via oupacademic)

Book is called “Charity & Sylvia: A Same-Sex Marriage in Early America” (Oxford University Press)” 

(via engrprof)

(via tasteslikefail)

infamymonster:

rifa:

literatenonsense:

exgynocraticgrrl:

Malcolm X: Our History Was Destroyed By Slavery 

on March 17, 1963 in Chicago.

see how little we get taught about history - I never had any idea why Malcolm X used the ‘X’. 

How come I didn’t know this

Also that crusty old white man called the named ‘gifted’. Jesus.

'GIFTED' Kill me

If you’ve never actually listened to Malcolm X before, I hope you’ll start with this.

(via boppinrobin)

rosalarian:

pourquoi-nutmeg:

nortonism:

The thing about this is that sculptures like these in art history were for the male gaze. Photoshop a phone to it and suddenly she’s seen as vain and conceited. That’s why I’m 100% for selfie culture because apparently men can gawk at women but when we realize how beautiful we are we’re suddenly full of ourselves…

YES.

Girls don’t let anyone tell you loving yourself is vanity.

rosalarian:

pourquoi-nutmeg:

nortonism:

The thing about this is that sculptures like these in art history were for the male gaze. Photoshop a phone to it and suddenly she’s seen as vain and conceited. That’s why I’m 100% for selfie culture because apparently men can gawk at women but when we realize how beautiful we are we’re suddenly full of ourselves…

YES.

Girls don’t let anyone tell you loving yourself is vanity.

(via tasteslikefail)

whb2:

this should be taught in school

the 369th infantry regiment

The 369th. Nicknamed the Harlem Hellfighters, (The Germans named them Hellfighters because they fought like hell, never lost ground and never had any men captured. One third of the 369th died in combat). were the first all-black regiment to fight in World War I. Even before they left for duty, the Hellfighters had to endure the racist taunts, jeers and violent attacks from their fellow white soldiers on the Camp Whitman base. The regiment had arrived in France in early 1918 and was trained for several months in French military camps. By May they were fighting on the Front lines, where they spent the next six months— longer than any other American unit during the war. The entire unit was given the distinguished Croix de Guerre by the French national government for their service.

But their heroism and valor were never recognized back home.

Despite the sacrifices and courage displayed by African American soldiers during the war, they nevertheless encountered a virulent backlash of white racism upon their return to the United States. A number of newly discharged soldiers- still wearing their uniforms- were lynched by white mobs. The post-war landscape was rife with racial and economic tension. The demobilization of the troops was met with severe and rising inflation and unemployment. At the war’s end, approximately 9 million people were employed in industries pertaining to the overseas effort. The war effort had provided openings for the migration of blacks into urban manufacturing jobs, but with the war’s end job scarcity fueled the notion among working class white workers that blacks were taking their places in the labor force.

Racial violence erupted in the summer of 1919, in what Harlem Renaissance poet and intellectual James Weldon Johnson would call “Red Summer.” On 27 July, in the Northern city of Chicago, Eugene Williams was drowned by white swimmers who threw rocks at the young African American boy for swimming too close to a white beach. The black community was outraged after police refused to arrest those responsible for Williams’ death. Rioting erupted throughout the city, and for the next five days, black neighborhoods were the sites of terror, burning and lynching. By the beginning of August, the city lay in disrepair, 38 dead, 500 injured, and over 1,000 black people homeless.

The fear of organized black labor was the catalyst for more racial violence and terror in Elaine, Arkansas. In early October, as black farmers and sharecroppers met to organize a union, a white mob swarmed down upon them in attempts to break up the meeting. The violence that ensued left over 100 black farmers dead and their farms destroyed. Throughout the South, independent black farmers and unions became the targets of racist violence and lynching.

Throughout the summer and fall, 24 other race riots erupted within American cities, all instigated by white acts of violence. In the Washington, D.C. riots, whites were shocked to find that black urbanites quickly organized collective resistance and militantly stood their ground. Indeed the war had meant something to black Americans; it meant that if they were to support the fight for democracy abroad, they would wage one for equality at home.
 
-Amistad Digital Resource

(via kellysue)

gradientlair:

While Black experiences with racism and anti-Blackness are used as analogies/metaphors and narratives to shape the experiences of non-Black people while erasing Black people’s experiences and humanity (as I discussed in White People Using Blackness and Anti-Black Racism Analogies For Their Experiences Is NOT Intersectionality), these experiences past and present are indicative of our lives, our history, our deaths. A reality. Not an anecdote to lead into something else. 

Michael Brown's execution and all of these extrajudicial executions are indicative of violence that never was truly “past” as it is always present. And it is a REALITY—not a metaphor—with a human cost in Black mental and physical health, in Black safety, in Black bodies. 

Below are the links mentioned in the tweets that I sent above: Black Women Were Lynched TooConsuming Black DeathFamily of Michael Brown, Teenager Shot to Death By Ferguson Police, Talks About His Life.

And look, I am disinterested in White supremacist sociopaths, anti-Black non-Black people of colour or unfortunately some Black people who have internalized racism and believe that the politics of respectability can protect us to now throw out the violent lie, derailment and misnomer (“Black on Black crime” is a misnomer and epistemic violence) that Black people “don’t care about intraracial crime.” This is a VIOLENT type of derailment and is dehumanization. When every race has intraracial crime yet only Black people are deemed to “not care” despite evidence to contrary and then civilian crime is juxtaposed to extrajudicial executions as modern lynchings and State violence? The false equalization is not solely epistemic violence; it is a direct attack on the mental health and well-being of Black people. Save it. (And notably, this derailment only addresses violence between cishet Black men; never a mention about any other Black people cared about or not.)

Black life is valuable in it of itself. Not solely as a trope for consumption with erasure and a demand that we feel gleeful about the erasure to prove “solidarity.” Anti-Blackness and misogynoir are not “progressive.” Michael Brown’s life MATTERED…FULL STOP.

Peace to every Black victim and family of this violence. (My own family is one of them, by the way.)

Peace to Michael Brown’s mother and his family. 

(via rubyvroom)

bedpartymakeover:

25 year old Chen Yen-hui recreates makeup looks from the Tang dynasty

People gotta signal boost the fuck out of this because you know it won’t get the attention it deserves till a white person copies it

(via tasteslikefail)

lookatthislittlething:

archiemcphee:

Today we step into the Archie McPhee Library to explore a macabre and fascinating book entitled The Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death [Buy on Amazon] by Corinne May Botz, whose outstanding photos reveal one of the strangest and most significant tools in the development of modern forensic analysis: eighteen miniature, exhaustively detailed crime scene models built in the 1940s and 50s by pioneering criminologist Frances Glessner Lee (1878-1962). She called her models “Nutshell Studies” because, “the purpose of a forensic investigation is said to be to ‘convict the guilty, clear the innocent, and find the truth in a nutshell.’”

Glessner Lee was a grandmother in her 60s when she painstakingly created these dollhouse models, each of which is based on an actual homicide, suicide or accidental death. To help ensure accuracy she attended autopsies and made sure that even the smallest details of her models were correct. Clothing is appropriately worn out, pencils write, locks, windows, and lights all function, whistles blow, and mice inhabit the walls. These astonishing models were (and still are!) used to train detectives on how to asses visual evidence.

Corinne May Botz’s lush color photographs lure viewers into every crevice of Frances Lee’s models and breathe life into these deadly miniatures, which present the dark side of domestic life, unveiling tales of prostitution, alcoholism, and adultery. The accompanying line drawings, specially prepared for this volume, highlight the noteworthy forensic evidence in each case. Botz’s introductory essay, which draws on archival research and interviews with Lee’s family and police colleagues, presents a captivating portrait of Lee.

Frances Glessner Lee was also an heiress who used her considerable fortune to found Harvard’s department of legal medicine, the first forensic pathology program in the nation. In 1943 she was appointed an honorary Captain in the New Hampshire State Police. She was the first woman in the United States to hold that rank.

It’s a dark topic, to be sure, but this beautiful book is an intimate and utterly captivating look at the work of a truly remarkable woman and one of the most important figures in the development of modern forensic analysis.

[Images via the New York Times and The Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death]

This is your semi-regular reminder that a really smart and skilled lady made dollhouse version of crime scenes to train police detectives on how to asses and interpret visual evidence. In the 1940s and 50s. They are currently kept in Baltimore at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner and can only be viewed by appointment (they also loan them out to other police agencies).

There is also a documentary about the Nutshell Studies that is available to stream on netflix called “Of Dolls and Murder” which is super good and narrated by John Waters (who else?) and you should watch it if you want to know more. Although I have to warn you, no one tells you the solutions to these crimes.

You should also listen to the missedinhistory episode about Frances Glessner Lee!

(via tasteslikefail)

lightthiscandle:

Crowds gather at Cape Kennedy, Florida to watch the launch of Apollo 11, July 16, 1969.

(via lightthiscandle)

il-tenore-regina:

"women didn’t get the right to vote till 1920"

WHITE WOMEN. 

"what?"

WHITE WOMEN.

"what do you mea—?"

WHIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIITE

WOMEN. 

(via squintyoureyes)

thefemaletyrant:

princessnijireiki:

latinagabi:

saturnsorbit:

Let’s not forget to acknowledge Alexandre Dumas this Black History Month

The writer of two of the most well known stories worldwide, The Three Musketeers and The Count of Monte Cristo was a black man. 

That’s excellence.

Let’s not forget that he was played on screen by a white man. And the fact that he was black is barely ever mentioned or the book he wrote inspired by his experiences.

Other things not to forget about Alexandre Dumas:

  • chose to take on his slave grandmother’s last name, Dumas, like his father did before him.
  • grew up too poor for formal education, so was largely self-taught, including becoming a prolific reader, multilingual, well-travelled, and a foodie, resulting in his writing both a combination encyclopedia/cookbook (which just— is fucking outrageous to me) AND the adaptation of The Nutcracker on which Tchaikovsky based his ballet
  • he also wrote a LOOOOT of nonfiction and fiction about history, politics, and revolution, bc he was pro-monarchy, but a radical cuss, and that got him in a lot of hot water at home and abroad.
  • even beyond that, he generally put up with a lot of racist bullshit in France, so he went and wrote a novel about colonialism and a BLATANTLY self-insert anti-slavery vigilante hero (which he then cribbed from to write the Count of Monte Cristo, the main character of which, Edmond Dantés, Dumas also based on himself).
  • (…a novel which also features a LOAD of PoC beyond the Count, and at LEAST one queer character, btw, bc EVERY MOVIE ADAPTATION OF ANYTHING BY DUMAS IS A LIE; seriously, at LEAST one of the four Musketeers is Black, y’all.)
  • famously, when some fuckshit or other wanted to come at Dumas with some anti-Black foolishness, Dumas replied, “My father was a mulatto, my grandfather was a Negro, and my great-grandfather a monkey. You see, Sir, my family starts where yours ends.”
  • http://media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m1dpg5Q35q1r5jtugo1_400.jpg
  • for the bicentennial of his birthday, Pres. Jacques Cirac was like, “…sorry about the hella racism,” and had Dumas’s ashes reinterred at the Panthéon of Paris, bc if you’re gonna keep the corpses of the cream of the crop all together, Dumas’s more widely read and translated than literally everybody else.
  • and they are still finding stuff old dude wrote, seriously; like discovering “lost” works as recently as 2002, publishing stuff for the first time as recently as 2005.

ALSO IMPORTANT:

image

image

SWAG

This is IMPORTANT!

(via boppinrobin)

particularscarf:

bacon-radio:

historicaltimes:

Normandy landing that you didnt see. 1944

Red Cross workers.

That is seriously the most badass thing I’ve ever seen.

(via maggiesox)

flutiebear:

archdrude:

The Amazing Connections Between the Inca and Egyptian Cultures 

"The ancient Egyptians (in Africa) and the ancient pre-Incas/Incas (in South America) evolved on opposite sides of the globe and were never in contact.

Yet, both cultures mysteriously possessed the same strikingly identical body of ancient art, architecture, symbolism, mythology and religion.

The Victorian era scholars, faced with this enigma, concluded that both cultures must have been children of the same Golden Age parent civilization, “Atlantis.”

Today, Egyptian/Inca parallels are not only being ignored by American and Western scholars, they’re being suppressed.

Many baffling and unsolved similarities link the ancient Egyptians and the ancient pre-Incas/Incas ― even though both cultures evolved on opposite sides of the planet, separated by oceans” Read More

NO.

NO NO NO NO NO.

For starters, these architectures resemble each other only superficially. Egypt is on a flood plain. Peru is in the Ring of Fire. One area has to worry about floods; the other, earthquakes. Thus their native cultures designed their buildings accordingly, with different shapes, materials, building processes/tools and construction techniques. Only the most superficial gaze sees these stone and adobe constructions and concludes that they’re “eerily similar”, presumably because all stonework is the same? I mean FFS the blocks aren’t even shaped the same or joined in the same patterns, unless you think there’s something spookily similar about people lining stone blocks up into a row, or into pillars with a slab on top.

Secondly, I can’t identify all the sites/artifacts in these pictures, but I see at the very least Qorikancha, Chan Chan, maaaybe Huaca del Sol and what appears to be a skull from the Colca region — meaning that the person who has assembled this photoset has cherry-picked from several hundred miles (and more than a thousand years!) of distinct, disparate archaelogical sites, geographies and culturesof “Pre-Inka” history in order to match a few photos of the Egyptian pyramids, which were built in the same general region. That’s some super-duper disingenuous bullshit right there.

Finally, the Pre-Inka and Inka cultures and dynastic Egyptian mythos and religions are nothing at all alike, unless you’re the sort of person that assumes all religions with multiple gods are the same. Which a lot of Eurocentric Victorians were. 

This photoset and the accompanying article is racist bullshit; it’s the archaeological equivalent saying all brown people look alike because they’re brown. I shouldn’t even be surprised that the article invokes research “suppression” and the concept of Atlantis to explain similarities that don’t even exist, save in a racist’s mind’s eye.

(via rubyvroom)

ricktimus:

Neil deGrasse Tyson is not impressed with all your sexism.

And the women weren’t named here either? That … that is happening a lot on and around Cosmos.

(via readwatchnaprepeat)

sorry to hijack to add content, but i want to be sure that TS picks these up since my tags grew unwieldy: 
tw: racism, tw: white supremacy, tw: genocide, cw: hiroshima, cw: atomic bomb
pitchercries:

callingoutbigotry:

fuckingrapeculture:

[“White Is”Preston Wilcox, EditorIllustrations by Sandy HuffakerWhite is dropping the H-bomb on the Japanese and not on the Germans.]
thegreatnessideserve:

dionysias:

thestraggletag:

lediableaquatre:

ughsocialjustice:

eccentricsage:

ragingconservative007:

springfi3ld:

collowrath:

bbowelmovements:

thisiswhiteculture:

doyayoda:

damn

yup. this about sums it up

Yes, exactly! It wasn’t because America planned to bomb Germany but then Germany surrendered, making Japan the greatest threat towards ending the war. It wasn’t because America wanted revenge for Pearl Harbor. It wasn’t because there were still many American troops in Germany. And Germany DEFINITELY hadn’t been bombed (not atomic/nuclear, but still bombed) numerous times previously in the war by the UK and America. It was because the evil white people decided to further oppress the poor, marginalized people of color. I’m so glad tumblr taught me this useful information, I can just forget everything I’ve learned in history class and ignore all of the facts and information concerning the event. What an educational and inspiring post.
[AKA nonsense]

[nonsense]

[ableist nonsense]

^^^^^

[no understanding of what racism actually is nonsense]

[nonsense]

[ableist nonsense]

[no knowledge of history nonsense]

[nonsense]

Okay kids, gather round because you seem to be under the impression that this website owes you an education AND that your education on this subject is sufficient. Neither of those is true, but I’m gonna help you out anyway!
First, let’s discuss the “reasons for dropping the bomb” that are commonly given, but also happen to be totally wrong:
Japan wasn’t willing to surrender
Actually, Japan was totally down to surrender! America was very good at cracking Japanese codes, and had intercepted several diplomatic messages sent to other countries where Japan expressed the terms of their conditions, with the only major term being that the emperor remain in power (Which would have been necessary to ensure a peaceful transition to foreign government for the Japanese people). Harry Truman ignored these messages and prolonged the war until the completion of the atomic bomb so that it could be used. More on that later.

In his 1965 study, Atomic Diplomacy: Hiroshima and Potsdam (pp. 107, 108), historian Gar Alperovitz writes:

Although Japanese peace feelers had been sent out as early as September 1944 (and [China’s] Chiang Kai-shek had been approached regarding surrender possibilities in December 1944), the real effort to end the war began in the spring of 1945. This effort stressed the role of the Soviet Union …
In mid-April [1945] the [US] Joint Intelligence Committee reported that Japanese leaders were looking for a way to modify the surrender terms to end the war. The State Department was convinced the Emperor was actively seeking a way to stop the fighting.


It would have saved more lives than it took
Nah. Japan was actually on it’s last legs, and wouldn’t have been able to fight much longer at all, thanks to effective embargoes, blockades, and traditional bombing. They had all but run out of fuel, ammunition, and other war supplies.

Admiral William Leahy – the highest ranking member of the U.S. military from 1942 until retiring in 1949, who was the first de facto Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and who was at the center of all major American military decisions in World War II – wrote (pg. 441):

It is my opinion that the use of this barbarous weapon at Hiroshima and Nagasaki was of no material assistance in our war against Japan. The Japanese were already defeated and ready to surrender because of the effective sea blockade and the successful bombing with conventional weapons.


Destroying two major military targets helped us out
LOL Nagasaki and Hiroshima weren’t selected because they were military targets (Because they weren’t military targets at all!). They were selected because they were large cities where the bombs would have the most devastating affect.

President Truman steadfastly defended his use of the atomic bomb, claiming that it “saved millions of lives” by bringing the war to a quick end. Justifying his decision, he went so far as to declare: “The world will note that the first atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, a military base. That was because we wished in this first attack to avoid, insofar as possible, the killing of civilians.”
This was a preposterous statement. In fact, almost all of the victims were civilians, and the United States Strategic Bombing Survey (issued in 1946) stated in its official report: “Hiroshima and Nagasaki were chosen as targets because of their concentration of activities and population.”
General George Marshall agreed:
Contemporary documents show that Marshall felt “these weapons might first be used against straight military objectives such as a large naval installation and then if no complete result was derived from the effect of that, he thought we ought to designate a number of large manufacturing areas from which the people would be warned to leave–telling the Japanese that we intend to destroy such centers….”
As the document concerning Marshall’s views suggests, the question of whether the use of the atomic bomb was justified turns  … on whether the bombs had to be used against a largely civilian target rather than a strictly military target—which, in fact, was the explicit choice since although there were Japanese troops in the cities, neither Hiroshima nor Nagasaki was deemed militarily vital by U.S. planners. (This is one of the reasons neither had been heavily bombed up to this point in the war.) Moreover, targeting [at Hiroshima and Nagasaki] was aimed explicitly on non-military facilities surrounded by workers’ homes.

Now, let’s discuss the the actual reasons for dropping the bomb:
To send a message to the Soviet Union
That’s it
It was strictly political

History.com notes:
By August 1945, relations between the Soviet Union and the United States had deteriorated badly. The Potsdam Conference between U.S. President Harry S. Truman, Russian leader Joseph Stalin, and Winston Churchill (before being replaced by Clement Attlee) ended just four days before the bombing of Hiroshima. The meeting was marked by recriminations and suspicion between the Americans and Soviets. Russian armies were occupying most of Eastern Europe. Truman and many of his advisers hoped that the U.S. atomic monopoly might offer diplomatic leverage with the Soviets. In this fashion, the dropping of the atomic bomb on Japan can be seen as the first shot of the Cold War.
New Scientist reportedin 2005:

The US decision to drop atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 wasmeant to kick-start the Cold Warrather than end the Second World War, according to two nuclear historians who say they have new evidence backing the controversial theory.
Causing a fission reaction in several kilograms of uranium and plutonium and killing over 200,000 people 60 years ago wasdone more to impress the Soviet Union than to cow Japan, they say. And the US President who took the decision, Harry Truman, was culpable, they add.
New studies of the US, Japanese and Soviet diplomatic archives suggest that Truman’s main motive was to limit Soviet expansion in Asia, Kuznick claims. Japan surrendered because the Soviet Union began an invasion a few days after the Hiroshima bombing, not because of the atomic bombs themselves, he says.
According to an account by Walter Brown, assistant to then-US secretary of state James Byrnes, Truman agreed at a meeting three days before the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima that Japan was “looking for peace”. Truman was told by his army generals, Douglas Macarthur and Dwight Eisenhower, and his naval chief of staff, William Leahy, that there was no military need to use the bomb.
“Impressing Russia was more important than ending the war in Japan,” says Selden.



So let’s recap:
Harry Truman purposely killed hundreds of thousands of Japanese civilians to make a political statement.
The US detonated the world’s first weapon of mass destruction simply to send a message to the Soviet Union and stop Red expansion into Asia.
I’m not saying the fact that one group of people (Who happened to be Asian) was viewed as disposable just to put on a show for another group of people (Who happened to also be white) is an act of racism.
I’m also not saying that we should examine the fact that no German or Italian families living in the US were put into containment camps out of fear of spies, but pretty much all Asian-Americans were (Because Asia is a country, obviously).
I AM saying that maybe you should consider that your history lessons in school were taught from books written by old white men, and they might read a little differently if they weren’t. 
Oh, and I’ll leave on this little note from President Truman’s youth. Again, I’m not saying he’s racist or anything, but…

In Hiroshima: Why America Dropped the Bomb, Japanese American historian Ronald Takaki writes about the man who made the final decision to destroy two Japanese cities, President Harry Truman. This was the same man who, when he was younger, wrote the following in a letter to his future wife, Bess:I think one man is as good as another, so long as he’s honest and decent and not a nigger or a Chinaman. My uncle Will says that the Lord made a white man of dust, a nigger from mud, then threw up what was left and it came down a Chinaman. He does hate Chinese and Japs. So do I. It is race prejudice I guess. But I am strongly of the opinion that negroes ought to be in Africa, yellow men in Asia, and white men in Europe and America.

Hey look, sources where you can go and educate yourself about all of this, and fact check me while you’re at it!
The REAL Reason America Used Nuclear Weapons Against Japan (It Was Not To End the War Or Save Lives)
forget the whiteness of the bomb


here i fixed some of the earlier comments so that they don’t distract from the huge fuckin’ historically accurate burn at the end 

FOREVER REBLOG the debunking of the popular reasons usually put forth by the US about why it dropped nuclear bombs on Japan. I don’t even care if you subscribe to the theory offered above that it was the opening shot of the cold war, I just want everyone to read + understand that it was absolutely not done to either end the war, take out crucial military targets, or save anyone’s life. 

sorry to hijack to add content, but i want to be sure that TS picks these up since my tags grew unwieldy: 

tw: racism, tw: white supremacy, tw: genocide, cw: hiroshima, cw: atomic bomb

pitchercries:

callingoutbigotry:

fuckingrapeculture:

[“White Is”
Preston Wilcox, Editor
Illustrations by Sandy Huffaker

White is dropping the H-bomb on the Japanese and not on the Germans.]

thegreatnessideserve:

dionysias:

thestraggletag:

lediableaquatre:

ughsocialjustice:

eccentricsage:

ragingconservative007:

springfi3ld:

collowrath:

bbowelmovements:

thisiswhiteculture:

doyayoda:

damn

yup. this about sums it up

Yes, exactly! It wasn’t because America planned to bomb Germany but then Germany surrendered, making Japan the greatest threat towards ending the war. It wasn’t because America wanted revenge for Pearl Harbor. It wasn’t because there were still many American troops in Germany. And Germany DEFINITELY hadn’t been bombed (not atomic/nuclear, but still bombed) numerous times previously in the war by the UK and America. It was because the evil white people decided to further oppress the poor, marginalized people of color. I’m so glad tumblr taught me this useful information, I can just forget everything I’ve learned in history class and ignore all of the facts and information concerning the event. What an educational and inspiring post.

[AKA nonsense]

[nonsense]

[ableist nonsense]

^^^^^

[no understanding of what racism actually is nonsense]

[nonsense]

[ableist nonsense]

[no knowledge of history nonsense]

[nonsense]

Okay kids, gather round because you seem to be under the impression that this website owes you an education AND that your education on this subject is sufficient. Neither of those is true, but I’m gonna help you out anyway!

First, let’s discuss the “reasons for dropping the bomb” that are commonly given, but also happen to be totally wrong:

  • Japan wasn’t willing to surrender

Actually, Japan was totally down to surrender! America was very good at cracking Japanese codes, and had intercepted several diplomatic messages sent to other countries where Japan expressed the terms of their conditions, with the only major term being that the emperor remain in power (Which would have been necessary to ensure a peaceful transition to foreign government for the Japanese people). Harry Truman ignored these messages and prolonged the war until the completion of the atomic bomb so that it could be used. More on that later.

In his 1965 study, Atomic Diplomacy: Hiroshima and Potsdam (pp. 107, 108), historian Gar Alperovitz writes:

Although Japanese peace feelers had been sent out as early as September 1944 (and [China’s] Chiang Kai-shek had been approached regarding surrender possibilities in December 1944), the real effort to end the war began in the spring of 1945. This effort stressed the role of the Soviet Union …

In mid-April [1945] the [US] Joint Intelligence Committee reported that Japanese leaders were looking for a way to modify the surrender terms to end the war. The State Department was convinced the Emperor was actively seeking a way to stop the fighting.

  • It would have saved more lives than it took

Nah. Japan was actually on it’s last legs, and wouldn’t have been able to fight much longer at all, thanks to effective embargoes, blockades, and traditional bombing. They had all but run out of fuel, ammunition, and other war supplies.

Admiral William Leahy – the highest ranking member of the U.S. military from 1942 until retiring in 1949, who was the first de facto Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and who was at the center of all major American military decisions in World War II – wrote (pg. 441):

It is my opinion that the use of this barbarous weapon at Hiroshima and Nagasaki was of no material assistance in our war against Japan. The Japanese were already defeated and ready to surrender because of the effective sea blockade and the successful bombing with conventional weapons.

  • Destroying two major military targets helped us out

LOL Nagasaki and Hiroshima weren’t selected because they were military targets (Because they weren’t military targets at all!). They were selected because they were large cities where the bombs would have the most devastating affect.

President Truman steadfastly defended his use of the atomic bomb, claiming that it “saved millions of lives” by bringing the war to a quick end. Justifying his decision, he went so far as to declare: “The world will note that the first atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, a military base. That was because we wished in this first attack to avoid, insofar as possible, the killing of civilians.”

This was a preposterous statement. In fact, almost all of the victims were civilians, and the United States Strategic Bombing Survey (issued in 1946) stated in its official report: “Hiroshima and Nagasaki were chosen as targets because of their concentration of activities and population.”

General George Marshall agreed:

Contemporary documents show that Marshall felt “these weapons might first be used against straight military objectives such as a large naval installation and then if no complete result was derived from the effect of that, he thought we ought to designate a number of large manufacturing areas from which the people would be warned to leave–telling the Japanese that we intend to destroy such centers….”

As the document concerning Marshall’s views suggests, the question of whether the use of the atomic bomb was justified turns  … on whether the bombs had to be used against a largely civilian target rather than a strictly military target—which, in fact, was the explicit choice since although there were Japanese troops in the cities, neither Hiroshima nor Nagasaki was deemed militarily vital by U.S. planners. (This is one of the reasons neither had been heavily bombed up to this point in the war.) Moreover, targeting [at Hiroshima and Nagasaki] was aimed explicitly on non-military facilities surrounded by workers’ homes.

Now, let’s discuss the the actual reasons for dropping the bomb:

  • To send a message to the Soviet Union
  • That’s it
  • It was strictly political
History.com notes:

By August 1945, relations between the Soviet Union and the United States had deteriorated badly. The Potsdam Conference between U.S. President Harry S. Truman, Russian leader Joseph Stalin, and Winston Churchill (before being replaced by Clement Attlee) ended just four days before the bombing of Hiroshima. The meeting was marked by recriminations and suspicion between the Americans and Soviets. Russian armies were occupying most of Eastern Europe. Truman and many of his advisers hoped that the U.S. atomic monopoly might offer diplomatic leverage with the Soviets. In this fashion, the dropping of the atomic bomb on Japan can be seen as the first shot of the Cold War.

New Scientist reportedin 2005:

The US decision to drop atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 wasmeant to kick-start the Cold Warrather than end the Second World War, according to two nuclear historians who say they have new evidence backing the controversial theory.

Causing a fission reaction in several kilograms of uranium and plutonium and killing over 200,000 people 60 years ago wasdone more to impress the Soviet Union than to cow Japan, they say. And the US President who took the decision, Harry Truman, was culpable, they add.

New studies of the US, Japanese and Soviet diplomatic archives suggest that Truman’s main motive was to limit Soviet expansion in Asia, Kuznick claims. Japan surrendered because the Soviet Union began an invasion a few days after the Hiroshima bombing, not because of the atomic bombs themselves, he says.

According to an account by Walter Brown, assistant to then-US secretary of state James Byrnes, Truman agreed at a meeting three days before the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima that Japan was “looking for peace”. Truman was told by his army generals, Douglas Macarthur and Dwight Eisenhower, and his naval chief of staff, William Leahy, that there was no military need to use the bomb.

“Impressing Russia was more important than ending the war in Japan,” says Selden.

So let’s recap:

Harry Truman purposely killed hundreds of thousands of Japanese civilians to make a political statement.

The US detonated the world’s first weapon of mass destruction simply to send a message to the Soviet Union and stop Red expansion into Asia.

I’m not saying the fact that one group of people (Who happened to be Asian) was viewed as disposable just to put on a show for another group of people (Who happened to also be white) is an act of racism.

I’m also not saying that we should examine the fact that no German or Italian families living in the US were put into containment camps out of fear of spies, but pretty much all Asian-Americans were (Because Asia is a country, obviously).

I AM saying that maybe you should consider that your history lessons in school were taught from books written by old white men, and they might read a little differently if they weren’t. 

Oh, and I’ll leave on this little note from President Truman’s youth. Again, I’m not saying he’s racist or anything, but…

In Hiroshima: Why America Dropped the Bomb, Japanese American historian Ronald Takaki writes about the man who made the final decision to destroy two Japanese cities, President Harry Truman. This was the same man who, when he was younger, wrote the following in a letter to his future wife, Bess:

I think one man is as good as another, so long as he’s honest and decent and not a nigger or a Chinaman. My uncle Will says that the Lord made a white man of dust, a nigger from mud, then threw up what was left and it came down a Chinaman. He does hate Chinese and Japs. So do I. It is race prejudice I guess. But I am strongly of the opinion that negroes ought to be in Africa, yellow men in Asia, and white men in Europe and America.

Hey look, sources where you can go and educate yourself about all of this, and fact check me while you’re at it!

here i fixed some of the earlier comments so that they don’t distract from the huge fuckin’ historically accurate burn at the end 

FOREVER REBLOG the debunking of the popular reasons usually put forth by the US about why it dropped nuclear bombs on Japan. I don’t even care if you subscribe to the theory offered above that it was the opening shot of the cold war, I just want everyone to read + understand that it was absolutely not done to either end the war, take out crucial military targets, or save anyone’s life. 

(via spaceshipmatria)