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Newhouse Defends the U.S. Constitution, Demands the National Archives Remove “Harmful Content” Label

September 21, 2021
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-WA) sent a letter to the Biden Administration’s National Archives Record Administration (NARA) calling on them to remove the “harmful content” warning they’ve placed on their cataloged website, including on documents like the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights, and the U.S. Constitution. This warning labels the governing documents of the United States as “harmful or difficult to view.”

“The role of the National Archives should be to preserve our shared histories and educate future generations, not to deny, change, or demonize our past,” wrote the lawmakers. “Unfortunately, by employing a harmful content label, the National Archives Record Administration has abandoned these responsibilities, adhering instead to a Leftist perspective that judges our past, discourages honest conversations about our history, and obscures the truth: that these documents were written to protect individual liberties and fundamental rights, and that the nation they established grew into the world’s greatest republic.”

The lawmakers concluded, “Therefore, we demand that you immediately remove this harmful content label from your catalog, stop weaponizing words and needlessly politicizing the American story, and return the National Archives to its true mission of strengthening our democracy instead of attacking it.”

Read the full letter here and below.

Dear Mr. Ferriero,

We are deeply concerned by the National Archives Record Administration’s “harmful content” warning displayed on the Archives’ cataloged website, including on seminal documents such as the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights, and the U.S. Constitution.

This content warning was put in place after a National Archives Task Force insisted that its records be “contextualized,” and notices be made that “forewarn audiences of content that may cause intense physiological and psychological symptoms.” Though the task force made multiple recommendations, describing the sacred documents on which our nation was founded as “harmful or difficult to view” is as bad as any one of the foolish capitulations to cancel culture we have ever seen.

The role of the National Archives should be to preserve our shared histories and educate future generations, not to deny, change, or demonize our past. Unfortunately, by employing a harmful content label, the National Archives Record Administration has abandoned these responsibilities, adhering instead to a Leftist perspective that judges our past, discourages honest conversations about our history, and obscures the truth: that these documents were written to protect individual liberties and fundamental rights, and that the nation they established grew into the world’s greatest republic.

Therefore, we demand that you immediately remove this harmful content label from your catalog, stop weaponizing words and needlessly politicizing the American story, and return the National Archives to its true mission of strengthening our democracy instead of attacking it.

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