Education

Wilmore’s ‘Nightly Show’ Skewers Textbook ‘Whitewash’ in Texas

By Mark Walsh — December 03, 2015 1 min read

I was always a David Letterman man, so when he retired from the “Late Show” on CBS this past May, I decided to explore my options at 11:30 p.m. Eastern time.

Besides Jimmy Fallon on NBC and Jimmy Kimmel on ABC, there would be Letterman’s replacement, Stephen Colbert, as well as Comedy Central’s “The Nightly Show,” with Larry Wilmore, the former “senior black correspondent” on “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.”

Wilmore, who memorably played a corporate diversity adviser in an early episode of “The Office,” launched his Comedy Central show in January of this year. With race as the key theme of the show, Wilmore has had no shortage of news developments from this year to skewer, parody, and sometimes get serious about.

Wilmore has touched on education issues a few times since his debut, and this week he devoted a segment to reports that the Texas state board of education had approved elementary and secondary textbooks that were “whitewashing” history. Wilmore showed a clip of an NBC News report that shows a McGraw-Hill world geography textbook that refers to slaves as “workers.”

(NBC reported that McGraw-Hill acknowledged the error and offered stickers to cover the offending passages or replacement textbooks.)

Wilmore then presented his own “story time” segment, with a Goodnight Moon-themed parody called Goodnight Slavery, before a befuddled classroom of young students. (They appear to be New York City child actors who are at least somewhat in on the joke.)

Here’s the video, but be warned: The content is edgy and mature.

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A version of this news article first appeared in the Education and the Media blog.