WHEN I was in school, they were giants - great men, gallant men - heroes who were willing to sacrifice their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor so that their beloved country could be freed from the chains of old Europe.
Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Robert Livingston and Roger Sherman formed the committee that crafted the Declaration of Independence; Jefferson wrote the main draft.
Livingston would be recalled by his state before he could sign it. Sherman was the only man to sign the Big Four of his day: the Continental Association, the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation and the U.S. Constitution.
Two of the five became presidents. Two wound up as the face of American currency. All five men and the entire Continental Congress laid the foundation of the Last Great Hope for the planet.
Standing taller than everyone was Gen. George Washington.
He didn't golf at Valley Forge. He stayed with his men, ever the winter soldier. He was the nation's first and greatest commander in chief.
That was how we viewed our Founding Fathers when I was growing up.
Today's educators have downgraded them to Founders, a non-sexist bone thrown to feminists.
That is not just politically correct but dishonest.
The ideals of this nation were set by a bunch of dead white males. As a future dead white male, I can see why there would be objections from those who aren't future dead white males.
Sure, the Founding Fathers were not saints. They were also hypocrites and scalawags.
The fellow who wrote "all men are created equal" not only owned slaves but may have sired children who were then slaves - and whose progeny were second-class citizens for another 100 years after slavery ended.
We should be honest about that.
We should also be up front about those who fought for freedom knowing they would never taste it.
Crispus Attucks was one of the five Patriots that the British killed in the Boston Massacre on March 5, 1770. He was biracial - actually multi-racial - having white, Negro and Wampanoag ancestors.
Abolitionists rescued Attucks from obscurity in the antebellum period. I am sure he would not have protested the resurrection for such a cause. About 40 years ago, he was brought out for another bow.