Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson may have stepped in a proverbial it when he referred to slaves brought to America as “immigrants” during a speech.
The moment occurred as Carson, freshly confirmed as HUD’s secretary, was addressing the agency’s staff for the first time.
“That’s what America is about, a land of dreams and opportunity,” said Carson at one point during his address. “There were other immigrants who came here in the bottom of slave ships, worked even longer, even harder for less. But they too had a dream that one day their sons, daughters, grandsons, granddaughters, great-grandsons, great-granddaughters, might pursue prosperity and happiness in this land.”
Ben Carson just referred to *slaves* as "immigrants"
"There were other immigrants who came here in the bottom of slave ships…" pic.twitter.com/WkFrm3dYCB
— Steve Kopack (@SteveKopack) March 6, 2017
These words were enough to send the internet into a fit, with everyone from the NAACP, to Samuel L. Jackson responding with varied levels of outrage. The event garnered enough attention that it has reached the top of Twitter’s trending list.
Warning: Some of these tweets contain strong language.
— NAACP (@NAACP) March 6, 2017
OK!! Ben Carson….I can't! Immigrants ? In the bottom of SLAVE SHIPS??!! MUTHAFUKKA PLEASE!!!#dickheadedtom
— Samuel L. Jackson (@SamuelLJackson) March 6, 2017
Ben Carson misspoke. He didn't mean slaves were 'immigrants' he meant to say they were alt-tourists.
— Carnitas Danger (@DangerCarnitas) March 6, 2017
Carson has drawn ire for his comments about slavery before, when in October of 2013 he said that “Obamacare is really I think the worst thing that has happened in this nation since slavery.”
“And it is in a way, it is slavery in a way, because it is making all of us subservient to the government, and it was never about health care. It was about control,” he added.
As of now, Carson has yet to address the outrage currently generated by his recent comments.