ThinkProgress reports that back when Michele Bachmann was just a Minnesota state senator, her campaign website included a list of “must-read books, which you can see on the Wayback Machine here. That list included a book that taught that slavery was just a wonderful institution that allowed blacks and whites to live in peace and harmony, with great respect for one another. Seriously. Here’s an absolutely delusional passage from the book:
Northerners were often shocked and offended by the familiarity that existed as a matter of course between the whites and blacks of the old South. This was one of the surprising and unintended consequences of slavery. Slavery, as it operated in the pervasively Christian society which was the old South, was not an adversarial relationship founded on racial animosity. In fact, it bred on the whole, not contempt, but, over time, mutual respect. This produced a mutual esteem of the sort that always results when men give themselves to a common cause.
The credit for this startling reality must go to the Christian faith.
Yes, on Planet Wingnuttia, Northerners were offended that slaves and their owners got along so gosh darn well. And it gets worse:
The fact was (and is) easily demonstrable that, taken as a whole, there is no question that blacks in this country, slavery notwithstanding, were “immeasurably better off” in nearly every way [than they were in Africa].
In Lee’s view, however, emancipation could only be accomplished successfully if it was gradual. Time was needed for the sanctifying effects of Christianity to work on the black race and fit its people for freedom. […]
The sanctifying effects of Christianity would prepare slaves for freedom. Never mind that Christianity was used by the defenders of the confederacy to justify slavery, and in some circles still is today. Yes, this is what Bachmann considers necessary reading.