While speaking to agency employees on Monday, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson referred to slaves as “immigrants” with hopes and dreams who “worked … harder for less.”
While talking about the promise of the American dream and the country’s status as the land of opportunity, the former neurosurgeon said slaves served as a good example of groups of people who achieved much with little in the United States.
“That’s what America is about,” Carson said. “A land of dreams and opportunity. There were other immigrants who came here in the bottom of slave ships, worked even longer, even harder for less. But they too had a dream that one day their sons, daughters, grandsons, granddaughters, great grandsons, great granddaughters might pursue prosperity and happiness in this land.”
This isn’t Carson’s first public mention of slaves.
In 2013, he called the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, “the worst thing that has happened in this nation since slavery.”
“It is slavery in a way because it is making all of us subservient to the government, and it was never about health care,” he said at the time. “It was about control.”
Carson, 65, also spoke on Monday about the human brain.
“Every human being, regardless of their ethnicities, or their background, they have a brain, the human brain,” he said. “There is nothing in this universe that even begins to compare with the human brain … I could take the oldest person here, make a little hole right here on the side of the head, and put some depth electrodes into their hippocampus and stimulate and they would be able to recite back to you, verbatim, a book they read 60 years ago.”
Ben Carson just referred to *slaves* as "immigrants"