1619 and the Oscars: Fit Companions

Needless to say, I didn’t watch the Academy Awards show last night. In fact, I didn’t know it was on: Hollywood and I parted company a long time ago. But I was surprised to learn from a friend that the New York Times ran an ad, during the Oscars show, for its 1619 Project. This seems unusual. How often does a paper advertise one of its “news” projects on national television, let alone on an expensive venue like the Oscars? The 1619 Project is obviously central to the Times’ mission, and it evidently has a great deal of money behind it.

This is the ad:

A couple of thoughts. First, why the Oscars? I assume because the Times knows that the rapidly-dwindling audience for that show consists largely of “woke” leftists. Who else could sit through it? So the Oscars were, perhaps, an efficient way for the Times to reach its core audience.

Second, the Times ad repeatedly emphasizes truth. “The truth can change how we see the world. The truth is worth it.” Here, the Times uses the word “truth” in a highly flexible sense. To my knowledge, not a single reputable historian has endorsed the 1619 Project as true. On the contrary, its main theories–e.g., that the American colonists revolted because they thought the British were about to abolish slavery–are ahistorical howlers, and have been widely denounced as such. The version of history peddled by the New York Times is a tissue of lies and misrepresentations. See, for example, this excellent piece by Katherine Kersten.

Increasingly, the far Left, of which the New York Times is a devoted chronicler, is trying to sell the rest of us a fantasy view of the world. Among other things, it is a view in which socialism is not only heroic, but is sure to work, any day now. The Left’s fantasy includes a set of transparent lies about history, in particular American history, as contained in the Times’s 1619 Project. (Because, let’s be serious: does anyone actually care about slavery in, for example, Brazil? Or the Arab states?) So it is appropriate that last night, two purveyors of politically-motivated fantasy, Hollywood and the New York Times, came together to propagandize their shrinking common audience.