Ben Metcalf

An astringent bit from Ben Metcalf, in his novel Against the Country:

Thomas Jefferson seems to me to have sinned cardinally, with his comfortable slaver’s dream of an agrarian wonderland and his criminal transfer of public funds to the Napoleonic war effort so as to avail us of the hectares needed to prove that dream a nightmare. I also hold accountable Daniel Boone, first realtor through the Cumberland Gap; and Fenimore Cooper, whose salesmanship of the prairie and the waterways as a playground for white boys continues to plague us with foreign-exchange students and unwatchable Hollywood films.