Chamblee54

The Henry Ford Meme

Posted in History, Library of Congress, The Internet by chamblee54 on February 29, 2016

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There is a meme going around. It has a quote, “Any man who thinks he can be happy and prosperous by letting the government take care of him, better take a closer look at the American Indian.” The credit/blame for the quote is given to Henry Ford. There are so many things to say.

You might ask if the quote is genuine. A bit of research leads to a foundation that studies the life of Henry Ford. They have a spreadsheet of his quotes. A search for the words happy, Indian, and prosperous do not show this quote.

The second comment is about what might be termed political correctness. The term American Indian is now considered offensive. If you consider the historic relationship between Native Americans, and the European conquerers, you see a history of land theft, treaty violation, and genocide. That this could be considered “letting the government take care of him” is a sick joke.

Ad hominem comments are just too easy to make. Henry Ford had a reputation for extreme anti-semitism. Mr. Ford was no fan of labor unions, and fought them fiercely. There are many other stories about what a horrible man Henry Ford was. Pictures today are from The Library of Congress.

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