Why American Networks Frame History Narrowly

Bren Kelly
11 min readDec 1, 2023

How Historical Narrative Absence Praises States’ Rights Autocracy

White Carolinian Conservatives Restoring Democracy After the Civil War
White Carolinian Conservatives Restoring Democracy After the Civil War [AI metaphoric re-enactment of the South Carolina Insurrection 1876]

Can journalists really be so ignorant of U.S. history? Do they really put lawyers on the air to deceive us to tell the truth? Or is it an accident of the wrong American narrative already deeply engrained in their minds? The idea that we are on the brink of autocracy is often repeated and shows a historical deafness, a profound ignorance, or a deliberate misdirection to the truth.

We had autocracy in states for so long in America, in many states, that Americans are just plain silly when they react to it with laughter. I can assure you it is true. Let me prove it. But then again, they don’t history because, well, the MAGA conservatives won’t let it be taught and neither will the white liberals. They started constructing historical narratives to be taught in schools at the beginning of the 1900s and developed in with an idea of unity, not disunity. We are “one nation” under God, not a whole bunch of divided states with different forms of government, democracy, partial democracy, managed autocracy.

Sometimes I wish I wouldn’t have got into this whole mess when I tried to be a “good ally” after George Floyd died by writing of the injustices against black Americans. Studying American history and reading original documents has left me profoundly disappointed how little I was taught. I had no idea, for example, Vermont started out as the first country in the world to abolish slavery at its founding. Yes, I said country. In 1777 it declared itself free with its own constitution as a country and abolished slavery. But to see how networks don’t tell anything of the past unless it is to talk of triumphs, of successes, and to honor the past. The horror, all the dishonorable attacks on democracy, is all left out. Especially the ones that succeeded.

Let’s take one example. The most wicked anti-democratic state, former super white richest colony that bent the constitution to its will and compromised it, South Carolina.

You would be surprised if I didn’t say it, but keep in mind the Deep South states weren’t around yet, and Florida wasn’t acquired from the Spanish until after 1810. I’m surprised myself in a way that most anti-democracy villainy and attacks originate strongest from that state, since…



Bren Kelly

Engaged in new Ideas and old Inequalities, dismantling the system in systemic, born on the 50th Anniversary of Women's Lib Day, still seeking injustices.