There are many events in the history of the United States that most Americans can be proud of today, however, there are several moments in U.S. history that are shameful, and should never be allowed to repeat itself again. Here is a look at the 10 Most Shameful Events in U.S. history, in no particular order:
1. The BP Oil Spill:
This is one of the most shameful events in recent U.S. history, if not ever for a few reasons. First, the CEO of BP was not only very slow to respond to the accident, but he was very public in his lack of concern for the people who died, lost jobs, for the damage of the Gulf Coast, and for the wildlife destroyed. The CEO was quickly asked to step down, to try to stop this environmental and public relations disaster.
2. Hurricane Katrina/FEMA:
This is not only one of the most shameful events in U.S. history, it is also one of the most heartbreaking events in U.S. history. Due to a level 5 hurricane, lack of planning and communication, “class wars” and poor racial relations, the city of New Orleans was not only decimated, but thousands of people were left to die. More people died from diseases, starvation, and dehydration in the days and weeks that followed. Many people became homeless instantly, and were sent to other states to live in survival camps. Worse of all, the federal agency FEMA did little to disseminate funds in a timely manner. Even worse, the President of the United States did little to show any urgency in caring for the survivors, or in resolving the damage caused by the hurricane.
3. Jim Crow Laws:
Jim Crow Laws were so-called laws enforced by south of the U.S. Mason-Dixon line, or the recognised Southern States. Jim Crow laws singled out African Americans in a manner that was dehumanizing, regulating African Americans to live a segregated, second and third-class lifestyle.
The U.S. will never be able to erase the shame that still lingers from it’s participation in the West African slave trade. West Africans from coastal countries were shackled and shipped in filthy conditions to the Americas, where they were used as slaves, in order to develop the world. Slavery was officially abolished in 1865.
5. The Salem Witch Hunts:
The Salem Witch Hunts started around winter 1691, through 1693. During this time, women suspected of witchcraft were randomly hung and burned at the stake by Puritans, who had an unnatural fear of Satan and therefore, demonic possession in humans. This event makes the top ten list, because to this day, reckless and undue accusations leveled against a person is called a “witch hunt”.
6. Indian Land Sale/The Trial Of Tears:
Indians were cheated out of thousands of dollars in Indian land sales. Then, by executive order, they were forced off their native land and relocated to other states, or to Indian reservations. This is particularly shameful, because the Indians were painted as savage people who needed to be removed off of land that was rightfully theirs. There was no reason for them to lose ownership of their land, except for what came to be known as Manifest Destiny.
Indian tribes from four different states were forcibly removed from their native lands, and made to walk for thousands of miles to Oklahoma. Many thousands of Indians died of disease, hunger, and from frostbite. This journey became known in history as the Trail Of Tears.
7. Vietnam War Veteran Rejection:
Veterans who served in the Vietnam Conflict of Southeast Asia from 1965-1975 were not only harassed and mistreated by the average American, but they were denied health care benefits and financial compensation they were entitled to for war-time injuries, and exposure to chemicals such as Agent Orange and Napalm. Thanks to years of veteran’s advocacy, many Vietnam Era veterans are finally able to put their shameful mistreatment behind them.
Definitely one of the 10 most shameful events in U.S. history, was the resignation of President Nixon, due to the Watergate scandal. His involvement and resignation shook the political faith of this country to its core, a left a very toxic legacy in the Executive Office.
9. The Assassination Of President Kennedy:
This was another shameful and heartbreaking event in U.S. history. While theories still exist regarding who actually shot Kennedy, the fact that an American shot the President on U.S. soil is undeniable.
10. The Attempted Assassination Of President Regan:
Luckily, newly elected President Reagan survived his assassination attempt, but this shameful act also took place on U.S. soil.