Responding to Michelle Obama’s remarks Monday at the Democratic National Convention, in which the First Lady referenced the fact that the White House was built by slaves, Fox News presenter Bill O’Reilly attempted to “fact check” Obama — without actually contradicting anything she said — by providing some “context.”
Slaves, “and free blacks, whites, and immigrants,” built the White House, O’Reilly offered. “There were no illegal immigrants at that time. If you could make it here, you could stay here.”
“Slaves that worked there were well fed and had decent lodgings, provided by the government, which stopped hiring slave labor in 1802,” but continued to allow sub-contractors to use slaves.
Fine. Great: Lest we all assume it was the “bad” kind of slavery… without food or shelter? Slaves did backbreaking work, like sawing stone by hand, to build the White House, other government buildings like the Capitol, and, of course, the private residences of numerous presidents. Enslaved families across America were split apart, rape and torture were common, and human life was a commodity to be traded worldwide.
But hey, food and shelter. Let’s move on.
Photo and video: Fox News.