The details of everyday life can make us forget the big lessons of our history. These are artifacts that were preserved at Morris Jumel, Manhattan’s oldest house and George Washington’s headquarters during the Revolutionary War. This was a pivotal time for the early Americans to define a new kind of government- one that would be a world apart from the monarchy they left. Yet, like these artifacts, many of the values of autocracy remain, complicated by an increasingly diverse racial composition. What the founding fathers never anticipated was emancipation. With every wave of reconstruction and progress, comes a push back by those who seek to preserve economic control. The current top-down, compliance based education reform reminds us a great deal of our past. How can we count the ways?