On Wednesday, "Of Thee I Sing: A Letter to My Daughters" hits bookstores. It is a book that highlights 13 Americans "whose traits he sees in his own children" according to a USA Today story about the book.
When listing those people, the article mentions almost in passing "His most controversial choice may be Sitting Bull, who defeated Custer at Little Bighorn."
Obama writes of Sitting Bull:
(He) was a medicine man who healed broken hearts and broken promises. It is fine that we are different. (He) spoke out and led his people against many policies of the United States government. He is most famous for his stunning victory in 1876 over Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer in the Battle of the Little Bighorn.
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Fox News certainly wasn't to let that pass, running an article on its web site titled "Obama Praises Indian Chief Who Killed U.S. General." It was later corrected to "Obama Praises Indian Chief Who Defeated U.S. General" for "historical accuracy," which is Fox's way of saying it made a mistake without really saying it made a mistake.
The brief article itself doesn't say anything else critical, but the headline said it all.
"If President Obama patted a child on the head, Fox News would probably accuse him of assault," Indiana University historian Ed Linenthal said. "It certainly sounds like what Obama has done is ... expand our sense of who counts in our own history. ... America has always been a mosaic of communities in which individuals become heroes and heroines and role models and tragic figures and controversial figures."
Others in the book include George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, social worker Jane Addams, Helen Keller, farm worker organizer Cesar Chavez,. Vietnam Memorial architect Maya Lin, singer Billie Holiday, artist Georgia O'Keeffe and astronaut Neil Armstrong.
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All proceeds from the book will go to a scholarship fund for children of wounded or fallen U.S. military personnel.