Cartoon Network is promoting ridiculous animated “anti-racist” PSAs, but, no surprise, their woke history lesson isn’t exactly fact-filled.
In a video that’s going viral, a character from the cartoon Steven Universe asks a class “Who invented the light bulb?” When they respond, “Thomas Edison!” She says, "That's not entirely true. The light bulb could more rightfully be attributed to Lewis Latimer, the black inventor behind the filament inside the bulb." Then she gets angry and rants, “Thanks to systemic racism, most of your storytellers prioritized white accomplishments,” and claims history was "modified to make white readers comfortable." The PSA ends with the words “Tell the Whole Story - Be Anti-Racist.”
Yeesh. “The black inventor behind the filament INSIDE the bulb" is being credited for inventing the light bulb? According to Live Science, Edison "patented the first commercially successful bulb" in 1879, Latimer improved on his design in 1882 by patenting "a more efficient way of manufacturing carbon filaments." Not exactly the same thing.
Joe Biden tried to make the same claim as Cartoon Network back in September and no less a Biden and BLM lapdog than CNN had to correct the record with an article titled: No, a Black man didn't invent the light bulb. But Lewis Howard Latimer made it better.
On December 3, the Cartoon Network tweeted out the video saying, “Black inventors, heroes, and leaders are often left out of history. Ask yourself as you're learning...who is the focus? Why? Question the story…”
Let’s turn the questions back around on Cartoon Network about their own video: "Who is the focus? Why?” Latimer is the focus because he is black and CN wants audiences to think there's some grand white supremacist conspiracy to hide accomplishments by black people in history and that this is only the tip of the iceberg proving systemic racism.
The Wrap bought this hook, line and sinker and raved in their article “Cartoon Network Doesn’t Hold Back in Scathing Anti-Racism PSA” on Wednesday:
It’s a fun PSA in the entertaining spirit of Cartoon Network, and more importantly, the way it’s presented makes it accessible to fans of all ages. At the same time, it does remind us that we’re often guilty of erasing Black history and Black creators in their most important moments. That’s where systemic racism really lays its roots — we learn about the most important creations and historical achievements through the eyes of white people, who in reality, were often boosted by the accomplishments of Black men and women who came before them.
By all means, let's learn about and celebrate Latimer's many contributions to science - he also worked for Alexander Graham Bell and was involved with the patents for the telephone. But let's not pretend he did things he did not do just to score racial points and besmirch others because they are white.
In fact, I agree, it’s extremely important that we teach about the historical success of black inventors, heroes, and leaders in America because right now the message from woke society seems to be that black people are helpless victims of the legacy of slavery and nothing has changed in 150-plus years. This white liberal paternalism would be unrecognizable to Latimer, the son of runaway slaves and a teenager when slavery was finally outlawed throughout the whole United States, who worked with the likes of Bell and Edison and went on to be inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame.
His story deserves to be told on its own. No "anti-racist" spin that he invented the light bulb needed.