Mayflower descendants defend their ancestors — and the history of America

Mayflower descendants defend their ancestors — and the history of America


Rebecca Locklear, 64, a 12th-generation Cape Codder, is a descendant of four of the families who arrived on the Mayflower in November 1620. She worries that society today, “is put into groups that are supposedly in a struggle against one another, rather than looking for commonality” — a view that opposes “the more open, inclusive society that the signers of the Mayflower Compact envisioned.”

Keith Whitaker, 49, in Tucson, is a descendant of Plymouth’s stalwart professional soldier, Myles Standish, and grew up admiring the “courage, determination, and propensity for hard work” of the Pilgrims who settled this nation. But in school he was taught that America is “the source of war, racism, consumerism and general vulgarity.”

Locklear and Whitaker both wrote to me after they read my recent New York Post essay, “This American Lie.” In it, I argued that The New York Times’ 1619 Project — which links the beginning of our country to the arrival of the

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