Religious Freedom, Weapon of Choice

This transatlantic story of religious freedom makes America a star in the global drama of religious freedom. It suggests reassuring progress from Anglican religious oppression to American religious freedom. It also implicitly privileges whiteness. Recapitulating this story year after year places the origins of the United States in Europe rather than in the vast and diverse civilizations that predated Europeans’ arrival on the American continent. It also erases the abhorrent transoceanic passage of enslaved human beings like my African ancestors, who crossed the Atlantic as cargo in the holds of ships rather than as pilgrims in pursuit of freedom.

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