Singer Stevie Wonder took a moment during a panel discussion hosted by MSNBC’s Al Sharpton on Friday to criticize the Texas Board of Education’s attempt to gloss over the U.S. slave trade.
“We really have to confront the educational system. Every single American must feel and know that they were a part of this United States,” Wonder said. “I think, that [school] books have to be rewritten — the whole notion of changing what happened during slavery time to saying it’s a fantasy — Texas — is unacceptable.”
The board approved the redesignation of the slave trade as the “Transatlantic Slave Trade,” after flirting with the name “Atlantic Triangluar Trade” as another possible name for the industry.
Though he clarified that he did not want to offend his fans in Texas, Wonder said, “I just feel that we can’t act like something that truly happened didn’t happen. It’s real, confront it. Deal with it and make the difference by changing it.”
Wonder’s remarks occur at the 4:10 mark of this panel discussion, aired Friday on MSNBC, below.