Removal of Confederate Monuments from National Parks?
A reader sent to me yesterday a copy of the proposed 2021 appropriation for the Department of the Interior, which includes the National Park Service, and he called to my attention to an item on pg. 160 of the appropriation:
REMOVAL OF CONFEDERATE COMMEMORATIVE WORKS 7 SEC. 442.
Notwithstanding any other provision of law
or policy to the contrary, within 180 days of enactment
of this Act, the National Park Service shall remove from
display all physical Confederate commemorative works,
such as statues, monuments, sculptures, memorials, and
plaques, as defined by NPS, Management Policies 2006,
Hmmm, I thought. Does that mean what I think it means?
I sent out a few inquiries to some history people in the know and also set to work poking around on my own. First, I looked up the NPS’s “Management Policies 2006” to find out how the Park Service defines commemorative works. Here’s what section 9.6.1 says:
the term “commemorative work” means any statue, monument, sculpture, memorial, plaque, or other structure or landscape feature, including a garden or memorial grove, designed to perpetuate in a permanent manner the memory of a person, group, event, or other significant element of history.
You can find more starting on pg. 150 of the policies document. Everything in section 9 of the document deals with commemorative works and plaques.
One section I found particularly interesting was section 9.6.4, “Preexisting Commemorative Works.” It offers the kind of historical perspective that’s useful right now:
Many commemorative works have existed in the parks long enough to qualify as historic features. A key aspect of their historical interest is that they reflect the knowledge, attitudes, and tastes of the persons who designed and placed them. These works and their inscriptions will not be altered, relocated, obscured, or removed, even when they are deemed inaccurate or incompatible with prevailing present day values. Any exceptions from this policy require specific approval by the Director.
Two phrases in particular jumped out at me there: “they reflect the knowledge, attitudes, and tastes of the persons who designed and placed them” and “These works…will not be altered, relocated, obscured, or removed, even when they are deemed inaccurate or incompatible with prevailing present day values.” This seems like a definite, deliberate attempt to guard history against presentism.
As I read the proposed appropriation, it would, as legislation, supersede the agency’s policy, although I don’t know enough about these sorts of legislative affairs to be sure. “It is pending,” one colleague said in reply to my query. “The Senate has not considered the legislation yet. I see no chance of that provision surviving the Senate….”
The monument fever that swept the nation last month has finally seemed to quiet down, at least for now, although some folks are concerned that the fight has just shifted to other fronts (just ask Washington formerly-known-as-Redskins fans). Of specific concern have been monuments in national parks and battlefields. Battlefields, which serve as outdoor museums, provide perfect context for statues, monuments, and memorials. Those artifacts, in turn, help visitors understand and appreciate those battlefields.
Although monuments on battlefields have been targeted by vandals, the Park Service itself has steadfastly maintained that the monuments will remain up. I’m reminded of a simple statement I saw on Gettysburg National Military Park’s website, on a page devoted to Confederate monuments: “The NPS will continue to provide historical context and interpretation for all of our sites and monuments in order to reflect a fuller view of past events and the values under which they occurred.”
I’ve thought, No way would anyone take down monuments from National Parks. But as the proposed appropriation suggests, someone somewhere is thinking of it. Even if the provision gets removed, it remains a shot across the bow. I have to eat my hat a little bit, and I’m not ashamed to say it.
I can’t even imagine the cost that would be involved in removing Confederate monuments and markers from national battlefields. Whatever the price tag, spending that money when the NPS has amassed an $11.6 billion dollar backlog of deferred maintenance makes me queasy.
The proposed appropriation is pending, open for revision and amendment, so I’ll try and keep my eye on how things pan out as the legislation moves forward. If you’re interested in or concerned about monuments, you might want to keep an eye on it, too.
[EDITOR’S NOTE: This is an inherently political topic, but please refrain from overtly bashing or promoting one side or the other in the comments. We also remind readers to follow our commenting guidelines and refrain from obscene language or name-calling. Thank you.]
293 Responses to Removal of Confederate Monuments from National Parks?
Why all the more important to not vote this fall for the political party that is caving to the movement by BLM Antifa and other domestic terrorists groups that would erase all of our history.Sadly this would be a once honorable party that gave us Franklin Roosevelt and John Kennedy aka the Democratic Party
It’s why it’s all the more important not to vote for a lying traitor conman and the party of accomplices that has shielded him while he loots the treasury and posses on working people. Stop being to damned easy to con.
This bill is sponsored by a Democrat and was passed by the Democrat controlled House of Representatives.
Write representatives and senators. We all care about the monuments but
truly much bigger issue at hand in election
Trump at helms clear and present danger to our literal lives and
to whether an America will exist or not. (Under him far more
than any monuments will go. Our lives and way of life–our country
will go.) Vote him out like your life and lives of your lived
ones depend on it because they absolutely do.
For issue about monuments, write representatives and senators. I already
have written to many.
This would make the town fathers and mother’s of Gettysburg go ballistic. Would have a great effect on tourism. So important that meaningless symbolic gestures are at the top of their agenda.
Don’t bet on it.
There is already one Adams County (PA) Commissioner (democrat of course) pressing for removal of Confederate Monuments form the Gettysburg Battlefield.
Fortunately, there are plenty of historians and history enthusiasts in good standing with the Democrat Party. They can fix this for us.
The commissioner who came out in favor of monument removal has already backed down and removed some of his posts due to opposition from other commissioners and the public who realize the significant harm this could do to Gettysburg
what are you referring to as meaningless symbolic gestures? if you mean confederate monuments,grave markers or memorials, stand by for some really vigorous defending of that statement by you to hundreds of loyal confederate descendents who most assuredly
will be giving you an earfull!!!!!!
Naw, believe it or not there is only one or two monuments for the confederacy located at Gettysburg. It almost 100% Northern.
There are 40 monuments to the South at Gettysburg.
We knew this was coming. Now, we must see if it can be stopped.
What the Departments ask for, and what they finally get….are 2 different things. I agree with Chris, that this will not survive in the Senate. In other words, let’s not worry about something that might never come to fruition.
If you are concerned, write your Senator.
I think you’re misreading the situation here. The attached document is not from the Interior Department—it is from the House of Representatives (appropriations.house.gov/sites/democrats.appropriations.house.gov). “Ms McCollum” is undoubtedly Betty McCollum, of Minnesota’s 4th Congressional District.
This document does not describe what the Interior Department wants to do. This is what the House of Representatives Appropriations Committee wants to authorize the Interior Department to do.
The Interior Department does not want to remove Confederate statues—-the House of Representatives does.
Instead of us calling our Senators, to ask them to push back against the House’s apparent attempt to sandblast American history—how about we call the Representatives that are pointing the sandblaster at our national parks?
Again, what is asked, and what is passed, are 2 different things.
and if there are 2 different bills, they go to a committee for compromise.
Thank you so much for bringing this to our attention. I, for one, am very concerned about these recent events and what the future may hold. I have been following the last few articles here regarding the removal of Confederate statues and names, and the comments range from “they were all traitors and erected by white supremacists who only wanted to intimidate black people and they should all come down”, to finger pointing which political party started and/or controls the KKK, to another tangent about the finer points if Russian spies when I mentioned McCarthyism. I feel as though the entirety of Confederate history is being reduced to and dismissed as the one-dimensional “racist/traitor” label and this makes me very sad.
To be completely fair, yes they did take up arms against the US government and the one of the major underlying causes for this was the continuation of slavery. But it seems that no one wants to look any deeper than this surface-level assessment, and any attempts to show a deeper side to these men are quickly shouted down. Isn’t this current movement suppressing our first amendment rights? What author would dare to write a book about any of these Confederates that doesn’t vilify them? What publisher would actually print such a book? What museum or institution would actually accept the statues that were taken down? If one did, wouldn’t it be quickly boycotted for displaying such “racist” material?
Not so long ago, during the sequi-centennial commemorations, even though the Confederates still took up arms against the US government, I don’t recall anyone calling them traitors then. Everyone had a voice – you could hear perspectives from Union, Confederate, slave, and civilian. You could march into battle with your favorite regiment/brigade (Union or Confederate) and learn of their fate during battle. You could crouch in the cellar with civilians unfortunate enough to get caught in the middle of such a battle and see how they improvised when supply lines were cut. You could rejoice when slaves liberated themselves and found new lives of freedom. There were no calls for removing statues or renaming buildings, but technically weren’t they still the same ‘traitors’ back then?
I know you try to maintain an objective, unbiased approach in your writings, but you have also expressed yourself as a “Stonewall Jackson fanboy”, but I really want to know how you’re feeling about all of this. Are you just shrugging your shoulders because “after all, he was a traitor”? Do you feel as if your heart’s been ripped out? Do you think this will completely destroy any future scholarly attempts of researching or telling the Civil War narrative? Will anyone even want to read about the Civil War anymore when they’ve got the abridged Cliffsnotes version of “Union good, Confederate traitors and racists, slaves freed but oppressed for another hundred years, everybody in the South is/was a white supremacist.”?
Is all of this really going to bring justice for George Floyd and others? Are all white cops (north, south, east, and west) secretly Confederate sympathizers that got their strength from Monument Avenue?
Hi, Debra. Thanks for your note. To be honest, I’ve had a lot of mixed feelings, so I’ve tried to be honest about that by sharing my own attempts to navigate these waters as a way to, I hope, help others navigate them, too. Ultimately, though, I want people to make up their own minds, so that’s why I’ve tried not to unequivocally say THIS or SUCH-AND-SUCH. My own background as a journalist really did demand unbiased reporting (despite the criticism a lot of the media gets these days!); my current work really requires me, I think, to NOT use a classroom as a platform for my own perspectives (unless it comes to the somewhat subjective art and craft of writing). I really just want to give people lots of stuff to think about and then let them think.
I really love your final two questions. I think the first one is spot-on in its pragmatism. I think the second one gets more at the weird intellectual leaps the national conversation has taken. I appreciate you raising them!
thanks chris, because, to be blunt, 98% of the north and union soldiers were “racist” if you want to use that term. some union men and officers owned slaves. including at one time US Grant. Sherman believed in slavery. ohio congressman thomas corwin and a mostly northern congress was more than willing to throw slaves “under the bus” with the corwin amendment. this crap needs to stop and stop now.
I have written several essays discussing the south and
Various aspects of the war including participants, causes
and aftermath in the south. But you are right, hatred and
misinformation have really hurt the possibility of a congenial
relationship between southern conservatives and liberal
northerns who mostly never know anything about history nor
any idea of what genteel or tradition mean. As of now and
for the foreseeable future , elected leaders all around America
have caved in to mob mentality and no confederate friendly
actions will be tolerated. We just have to stay vigilant and keep
Communicating with like minded people until there is an opening
In the other side’s armor!
Or maybe those “liberal northerns” know history very well but don’t buy that “genteel” excuses lynching parties. You’re being conned by the republicans. Again. Because it’s easy.
“I feel as though the entirety of Confederate history is being reduced to and dismissed as the one-dimensional “racist/traitor” label and this makes me very sad.
To be completely fair, yes they did take up arms against the US government and the one of the major underlying causes for this was the continuation of slavery. But it seems that no one wants to look any deeper than this surface-level assessment, and any attempts to show a deeper side to these men are quickly shouted down.”
While I think the history of the so-called Confederate States of America is a fascinating, diverse, multi-faceted subject to research and learn about, there is no question that from having read what actual Confederate soldiers and citizens said about themselves, they wanted to be a nation defined by the enslavement of African-Americans. CS Vice President Alexander H. Stephens wasn’t ambiguous when he said in March 1861 that the new government’s “cornerstone rests upon the great truth, that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery—subordination to the superior race—is his natural and normal condition. This, our new government, is the first, in the history of the world, based upon this great physical, philosophical, and moral truth.” And while some people have tried to claim this point-blank statement was nothing more than the words of an elitist, out-of-touch politician and not the common Confederate soldier, the words of a 4th Virginia cavalryman actually back up Stephens’ “cornerstone:”
“Our men of the southern army say [the war aims of the north are] to free the negro and to make the negro equal with the poor man of southern states and have free mixed schools and a negro can marry a white girl and etc.; and the men are saying they will wade in blood to their chins before such a thing shall happen to our people.”
Personally, I don’t mind at all if someone has ancestors who fought for the Confederacy. I just hope, however, that the descendants would be more honest with themselves about what southern secession and Confederate war were actually about seen many times where people say there were “other reasons” or “slavery was just one of the reasons” for the rebellion. But not only can these apologists never cite with evidence what the other reasons are, actual Confederates in their own words never came up with another reason, either. All that said, I don’t believe all White Southerners of the Civil War were evil monsters who are now all burning in hell for the things they did. But I do think we need to understand them for who they actually were rather than what we want so desperately to see.
Nice piece Debra, well thought-out. I was so upset when I first heard that they were thinking of removing the statue of Robert E. Lee in Charlottesville. It seems like that was months before that protest when the lady was unforunitally hit and killed by that jerk. We’ve all gone off on a crazy tangent since then over a couple of nasty incidents. I’ve read many books on R.E. Lee as well as Stonewall Jackson, both great men in my opinion and great role models. Yes, there was the issue of slavery in the Civil War, but that wasn’t the only issue and these men were fighting to preserve their homeland. The north wanted Lee, but he went to the south, “to protect my country, Virginia” I believe is how he put it, or something close to that.
Lee fought for the Confederacy for one reason States Rights , Slavery may have been the issue of the day but the base of the war was States Rights. Oh yes and Money . South had it North needed it.
Sorry. That’s not correct.
The South seceded after Lincoln was elected, because the Republicans had an abolitionist part of the party, which wanted to abolish slavery.
You can cry all you want to, about States Rights….but the “State Right” they were upset about was , the right to take their property…aka slaves…into free states.
Please read the following article……https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/five-myths-about-why-the-south-seceded/2011/01/03/ABHr6jD_story.html
Lost Cause Police—this is good news for y’all, right? No more icky Confederate statues!
You might want to consider that the part of American society that wants to sandblast our history has concluded that they’re doing God’s work. Where did they get that idea? Perhaps, at least in part, from YOU. Perhaps from all the “history supporters” that bent over backwards, as Confederate statues were being pulled down and defaced left and right, to proclaim that those statues were icky! Monuments to white supremacy!!! And—worst of all—monuments to the LOST CAUSE!!!!
Anytime any of us spoke up in support of those statues, y’all would start chanting “Lost Cause Lost Cause Lost Cause.” As if you had Tourette’s.
Well, Lost Cause Police, you reap what you sow. The House Appropriations Committee has just reported out a bill from the full committee, calling for Confederate statues to be removed from National Parks. A whole bunch of elected representatives have concluded that it’s not only OK to do this…but that their constituents WANT it!
Now it’s time for you to go to the anti-statue crowd (which, apparently, has quite a few members on Capitol Hill) and act like the Bill Buckley ghost character in “Aladdin.” Tell them that they must have not realized that there were a few caveats, provisos and quid pro quos to your Lost Cause policing that they must have missed.
Y’all didn’t start this mess, but you did enable it. Now, please clean it up. And, you’d better hurry.
It infuriates me to no end. I still believe Confederate court house monuments should stay for memorial and historical reasons and I have never wavered from that position – no matter how unpopular it was or has become. Athough that battle appears to be lost. But I hold out hope that someday sanity will return and perhaps these monuments will return.
I am especially infuriated with those academic historians who have been quietly building a case that these monuments represent cultural repression for decades now.
They are markers of where we were at at one particular point in time. You add to them, erect new monuments. PERIOD. Then I saw preservationist groups and some historians who I really respected calling for their removal. I was and am extremely disappointed with these groups in particular. They rationalized their stances based on current social and political blowing winds and in five years the winds have shifted towards a strong Social Justice Warrior position. These groups among all other should be protecting these monuments. Oh its just “racist” Confederate monuments they are after when it is far, far more subtle and complex than that.
You are absolutely correct that alot of people who proclaim to love history have been actively promoting and enabling a clueless mob that no one can control.
As you note they did not begin this mess but they have enabled it and now it has spread beyond anyone’s ability to control it.
There are alot of preservationists and historians who should have known better who are now experiencing what it is like to appease a mob. When you call for the removal of this monument but not that one it is falling on deaf ears. This current “movement” is a beast that has an insatiable appetite. No amount of “woke” cancel culture will satisfy it. It is like the appeasement policy followed by the Allies with the Nazis in the run up to WWII. No amount is ever enough. All you are doing is putting yourself last in line to get eaten by the lion.
I hope this site and other preservationists groups will take a much harder, careful and cautious look at this in the future. A genie has been let out of the bottle and I don’t know if it can be put back in.
More like a hydra than a genie, and yes, those who had the power to do something, didn’t.
Not quite true— those who have the power have used it to loot and pillage and destroy the Constitution. They find it easy to divide people because too many are willing to be conned to “protect” them form “other.” Anyone supporting republicans is bending over saying “keep screwing America.”
“I can’t even imagine the cost that would be involved in removing Confederate monuments and markers from national battlefields. Whatever the price tag, spending that money when the NPS has amassed an $11.6 billion dollar backlog of deferred maintenance makes me queasy.”
Terry McAuliffe, when he was governor of Virginia, said much the same thing about removing Confederate monuments from Monument Avenue. With Richmond schools so desperate for funding, he said, how could he justify spending state money to move statues?
Well, if you have a CRISIS!!!!, you can! Two months after rogue police in Minnesota kill a man, the Confederate statues in Richmond are gone. I’m sure the city of Richmond spared no expense.
Notice the stipulation that the statues had to be removed “within 180 days.” That pushes normal budgeting considerations, for deferred maintenance or anything else, aside. It also provides insurance that, if the American public rises in horror at watching their history being sandblasted, and throws out the offending House of Representatives at the next election—-the sandblasting will be done by then.
Smart people, well-versed in legislative tactics, wrote this bill.
Many of us knew it would come to this and we know which party is pushing it. Sad.
I ran the copy of the appropriations document Chris posted by a Congressional aide. I asked this question: “I’m told it is the formal report, from the House Appropriations Committee, on the appropriation for the Interior Department. As I understand it, this report would have been reviewed and voted on by the full committee. It is a product that has the official approval of the House Appropriations Committee, and has been sent to the full House for consideration. It is a committee document, not a document approved by the full House. Do I have this correct?”
The aide’s reply: “Yes, I believe you have this correct.” That aide also said that, for Interior Department appropriations, “The Democrats control the committee and the process.”
Right off the bat, let’s marvel at the hypocrisy.on display by those who propose this. THEY are the ones who have lectured us that said monuments BELONG on battlefields and/or museums, not on city streets.. But as we have seen from the mobs in Richmond and elsewhere, any ‘due process’ as far as removal of them was a big, fat lie from the get-go. They were targeted for complete destruction by the elected officials of the towns and cities involved, and the mobs are their instrument for that. ‘Removal’ meant preserving them pending decisions on their final dispositions and PLACEMENT. Again, that has proven to be a complete lie .
Thanks for this. Note in your post you wrote “2020” but it’s actually for FY 2021. The bill was just released from House Appropriations Committee markup yesterday as HR 7612. So I guess the action now is for the committee of the whole to consider then get passed to Rules to write the rule for debate.
Note that the US Senate has had a poor track record for years in passing appropriation acts, and last year did not pass the act for interior; instead it got rolled up into the “FY2020 Further Consolidated Appropriations Act “. That didn’t pass until just before Christmas. Expect this to be included in various “continuing resolutions” starting in October and extending at least through the elections.
Thanks for the catch on the date, Scott!
I read HR 7612. with particular emphasis on the section involving the National Park Service (pages 32-41). It would appear the offending language, regarding the removal of “Confederate Commemorative Works”, did not make the final cut.
I worked on the Hill for a decade.
I have not looked at the status of this bill, but the text indicates it has passed committee and been recommended to the floor. The next step is normally the Rules Committee, which decides what provisions require a referral to another committee and/or what provisions are subject to amendment on the floor. The Rules Committee is not technically a rubber stamp for the party in power, but it generally does what the leadership of the majority party wants, meaning, it could rule that this provision is out of order and strip it from the bill or that no amendments to this provision are in order as the bill goes to the floor. (The bill language is guidance, not an appropriation, and does not belong in an appropriations bill under House rules. But, the House violates its own rules all the time to include such provisions in an appropriations bill.)
You’re right. The “Notwithstanding any other provision of law” language is like a blast of canister at Gettysburg, but more effective. It sweeps away all other laws, including any existing statues that would protect monuments at parks. It definitely trumps the Interior Department’s internal policy. But, the Department can interpret the guidance creatively to keep its battlefield monuments. The question always comes down to: will it? The answer will depend on the Secretary of the Interior and his/her boss, the President, whoever that may be, and how much pain and grief they’re willing to put up with from the majority party in Congress until giving in. The relevant language in DOI internal guidance is not 9.1.1. or 9.6.4 from the 2006 Management Policies, but 9.6.1.
The appropriations bill itself will often get wrapped up in an omnibus spending bill that the House passes and sends to the Senate without amendment, meaning there is a high likelihood that House members will not have a chance to amend this bill formally and this language will make it to the Senate.
These days, the negotiations over language in such a bill take place between Senate leadership and House leadership without the participation of other members or Senators. (Committee leaders may be the exception and often have a role in negotiating specific provisions as subject matter experts.) The language may be “trade bait” in those discussions, meaning Republicans in the Senate will have to give something up in order to get this language out. That will depend on which chamber values the language more and has better “hostages” elsewhere in the bill. Given that we’re in the midst of a pandemic and recession, both parties will have much higher priorities than statues at battlefields.
The best legislative strategy would be to try and change that calculus of “value.” If you need to contact someone, start with Doug Jones (D-AL) and tell him the bill would take out all the Confederate monuments at Vicksburg, etc. and that he needs to raise it with Schumer BEFORE the election. Richard Shelby (R-AL) also often exercises outsized power in appops-related bills. The VA Senators would also be logical people to contact. If you contact anyone, my advice is be polite, specific, calm, brief, and clear. Cranks, yellers, etc. are easy to ignore.
The alternative model for funding DOI is a Continuing Resolution, which just extends existing funding levels with a formulaic funding adjustment at the margins. They are supposed to be short but have tended to be longer in recent years. A CR should not include the language under the rules of either chamber, but, again, both chambers frequently violate their own rules. So, the possibility always exists that this language will survive, unnoticed or undefended, in some massive spending bill that no one has time to read or an opportunity to object to.
No matter what happens for FY21, this language will likely make its return every year and Confederate battlefield monuments will be under constant political assault until they are removed. If you want pics, take them now. The opportunities will not exist forever.
Thanks for the catch on the 9.1.1, which was a typo; it should’ve been 9.6.1. I’ve corrected it.
I appreciate the “inside baseball” perspective you add here, which was helpful.
“No matter what happens for FY21, this language will likely make its return every year and Confederate battlefield monuments will be under constant political assault until they are removed. If you want pics, take them now. The opportunities will not exist forever.”
Ominous wording. I was assured by so many bright people that this would never happen. Cities would remove monuments, but they would be safe in the national parks.
As the old saying goes, never let a crisis go to waste.
“The appropriations bill itself will often get wrapped up in an omnibus spending bill that the House passes and sends to the Senate without amendment, meaning there is a high likelihood that House members will not have a chance to amend this bill formally and this language will make it to the Senate.”
I suspect the remove-the-Confederate-statues advocates knew this. This gives House members cover. They can swear up and down they themselves would NEVER have approved language like that…but, gosh darn it, they didn’t have a chance to fix it! So voters, don’t blame me!
FWIW, my understanding is that this year: 1) there will be a bunch of “mini-bus” bills, meaning they’ll bundle approps bills instead of doing one large omnibus bill and, 2) Senators Shelby and Leahy (chair and ranking of the Senate Approps Committee) have a political deal not to include anything controversial in the approps bills this year. They’ll probably start with a short term CR to get past the election, then a second CR to get past the inaugural, and then leave it to the President and next Congress to sort it out for the last 7 months of the fiscal year.
Does anyone know whether ABT deals with this kind of thing? I suspect they do not as it’s too political and would interfere with protecting land.
We knew this was coming yet many buried their heads in sand and continue to do so believing this will not happen but it is now on our doorstep and the future of the national battlefield parks are in jeopardy
“The language may be ‘trade bait’ in those discussions, meaning Republicans in the Senate will have to give something up in order to get this language out.”
I read this to mean that the Democrats have taken the Confederate memorials at national parks hostage. Is that right?
Pretty much. You always put stuff in a bill that you know you won’t get in order to have things to trade away. And, hey, if you’re lucky enough to get it, more power to you. (I mean that generically, not necessarily as an endorsement of the practice.)
Correction—sorry, I didn’t paste in the full quote. Here’s the full quote:
“The language may be ‘trade bait’ in those discussions, meaning Republicans in the Senate will have to give something up in order to get this language out. That will depend on which chamber values the language more and has better ‘hostages’ elsewhere in the bill. Given that we’re in the midst of a pandemic and recession, both parties will have much higher priorities than statues at battlefields.”
I read that to mean that the Democrats have taken the Confederate memorials at national parks as hostages, and will demand some form of legislative “ransom” from the Republicans to free them (for the moment)>
What about the President’s executive order about monuments on Federal land? That should make this null and void.
Until and unless the language becomes law, it has no effect on the order. I’m not familiar with the order itself, but if the bill language is enacted into law, meaning a President has signed it, statutory language trumps an executive order. If there’s a disagreement, the branches fight it out with Congress relying heavily on the power of the purse. If they can’t resolve their differences, they often end up in court.
Have to agree with Donald! “Two months after rogue police in Minnesota kill a man, the Confederate statues in Richmond are gone. I’m sure the city of Richmond spared no expense.
Notice the stipulation that the statues had to be removed “within 180 days.” That pushes normal budgeting considerations, for deferred maintenance or anything else, aside. It also provides insurance that, if the American public rises in horror at watching their history being sandblasted, and throws out the offending House of Representatives at the next election—-the sandblasting will be done by then.” Give ’em an inch – they’ll take a mile. There’s obviously a rush to avoid any public discussion / referendum / vote / legislative process and remove monuments asap under any pretense available. The mayor of Richmond clearly defied the VA legislature and it requires a private citizen to sue mayor Stoney to hold him accountable. And SOMEBODY is paying for this monument cleansing – whether they want to or not. If only politicians from both sides would move this quickly to get substantive things done! But they’re too busy pandering to the vocal minority. And this minority are like children – cry till you get what you think you want, and then cry and ask for even more. This is a huge wide-ranging breach of the “rule of law” by elected politicians!
Randall—can you blame the activists? They’re on a roll! If I were them, I’d try to get everything I can. The pro-Confederate statue advocates I’d ignore, and the Lost Cause Police who are probably still shocked at how far I’m pushing this, are probably too timid to do anything to stop me.
The phrase that stood out for me was; Any exceptions from this policy require specific approval of the Director. You think that the Director of the NPS and his boss at Interior won’t cave to the political whims of the few?
Depends on who the president is. It also depends on how badly the president needs a deal with Congress.
Keep on sliding on the slippery slope. Next stop, Battlefields. Then round-tables, then symposiums, then websites, ban and burn the books………………
Follow the money folks. Hang on to your seats. This ride is only beginning. And “we told you so….”
Points being proven everyday in this current day upside down world.
Although I oppose statues in public places honoring Confederate generals and leaders (after all, they were traitors who wanted to dismantle the United States so slavery could be maintained and expanded), I believe a proper place for them is at battlefields, museums and CW cemeteries.
If the anti-statue section in the bill is approved by the full U.S. House – which I doubt – it will surely be killed in the Senate. Remember, it’s only been before the House Appropriations Committee, as I interpret Chris’ post.
Many people oppose such statutes in public venues such as public parks and along public streets where pedestrians and auto drivers have little choice but to pass by them. It’s another thing to place them at museums, battlefields and museums. If someone is offended by such a monument, they don’t have to visit the museum, et.al. It’s quite another thing to place them along streets, parks, etc.
I will acknowledge that a handful of far-left zealots are going too far in wanting to tear down statues to other famous Americans. While believing these folks are going too far, I can understand their anger. It stems from decades of frustration with racial discrimination in this country,. And make no mistake, that discrimination continues. One of the most recent manifestations of this Jim Crow-like discrimination is the effort by some partisan politicians to suppress the vote under the guise of fighting voter fraud.
And of course, the far-right has its zanies, too. Just look at the QAnon conspiracy crowd, anti-mask nuts, white supremacists, citizen militiamen et. al.
“If the anti-statue section in the bill is approved by the full U.S. House – which I doubt – it will surely be killed in the Senate.”
Not if the Senate is not willing to pay the House’s price for removing the provision, whatever that might be. Read Eric Sterner’s comments. Eric also explains that the House will probably follow a procedure that shields the full House from having to take a clear vote on this section.
The Lost Cause Police need to get on the phones and tell the right Congressmen/women and Senators that they’ve gone too far this time. The people in Congress who are pushing this provision will not give the time of day to Confederate heritage advocates like me. Someone who they WILL listen to needs to step up here.
You’re a nice guy, Chris, but you have been very naive about the Jacobins and their statue smashing. Thinking they would stop at Confederates. Thinking they would not go after Confederate statues on battlefields. That’s not how the Left of today thinks. Those assuming this is “ trade bait” are being naive too. They mean this. If Dems win the Senate and White House they will eliminate the filibuster ( already floating that idea) and they will do this—among other things.
Perhaps it’s naivety. Rather, though, I’ve believed that some sort of firewall would stand–either process and procedure, or statue supporters who would stand up and be counted. If statue supporters won’t stand up and be counted, though, or they let themselves be cowed or steamrolled, then what’s to stop “the Jacobins”? Who’s to blame for that?
As far as the filibuster–a different topic–I wouldn’t mind if either side eliminated it at this point. It gets abused way too much. If senators had to actually stand on the floor and filibuster, that’d be fine, but now they only need to indicate their intent to filibuster, and other Senate rules kick into effect that essentially let any single senator block any piece of legislation, with no explanation as to why and without even letting that legislation come up for debate. It undercuts the very idea of “the world’s most deliberative body” by cutting out the deliberations entirely. The Founders never wanted too much power to concentrate in the hands of any one person, so I think they’d be appalled by what the filibuster evolved into (which, BTW, isn’t a Constitutionally prescribed power but rather the unintended result of some rules changes during Aaron Burr’s tenure as VP and presiding officer of the Senate). FWIW, Biden, who loves Senate tradition, remains in favor of the filibuster. Obama, as president, opposed eliminating it (although after he left office admitted that he should’ve supported its elimination because it impeded his ability to govern).
“If statue supporters won’t stand up and be counted, though, or they let themselves be cowed or steamrolled, then what’s to stop the Jacobins’? Who’s to blame for that?”
Agreed. But, the Jacobins who took Confederate statues in National Parks hostage…sorry, put this “provision” in the House Appropriations measure, are (from what I can tell) all from one party. They’re not going to listen to statue supporters from the other party. That’s just fact.
Following your reasoning, isn’t it time for “statue supporters” from the same party/side of the generic “political aisle” as the Jacobins here to step up and take the lead here?
Wanting something long-term and including language you know you can’t get passed at the moment are not mutually exclusive.
I agree with Glen. Chris you seem like a nice guy as do alot of you on this website but you have been incredibly naive and you have enabled this movement.
I’m pretty sure nobody in “this movement” is listening to me one way or another, Curt. I’ve tried to remain neutral and provide information and context so people can make up their own minds, and I’ve consistently called for due process. I’ve not seen much of that. I’m not sure how that’s enabled “this movement.”
Note, from above:
[EDITOR’S NOTE: This is an inherently political topic, but please refrain from overtly bashing or promoting one side or the other in the comments. We also remind readers to follow our commenting guidelines and refrain from obscene language or name-calling. Thank you.]
We’ve had to delete a couple comments that have violated the commenting policy.
I’ve been trying to let the “marketplace of ideas” sort out some of the partisan political comments, but I don’t want the discussion thread to descend into partisan warfare, please. 🙂
Commenting guidelines: https://emergingcivilwar.com/mission-statement/social-media-commenting-guidelines/
You’ve done an exemplary job at walking this tight rope. Alas, I have a dark prediction for you: As Election Days draws closer, don’t be surprised if the political tilt of ECW posts increases.
Good luck in navigating these treacherous waters, ol’ buddy.
P.S. I won’t be offended if you delete any of my comments that violate the guidelines. I do tend to go overboard at times. (Some of my ECW friends probably think I go overboard ALL of the time.)
The slippery slope applies here as well. It will begin with people(like a certain academic in the Gettysburg area) wanting to provide “appropriate context” to the monuments. This context will draw the attention of the “woke” mob who will then in turn start the vandalism.
It matters not that the NPS does an excellent job of providing that context at Visitors Centers at all the major battlefields. Context is not what they are truly seeking.
In the world of the ancient Greeks, the second-highest social class to them were the sculptors. No doubt the Greeks recognized the gifts of sculptors to transform clay, stone, wax, and metal into representations of men and gods. They could visualize form in the round, in three dimensions, and transform ideas into immortal symbols. But at the top of the social pinnacle were the bards, the poets who in darkened rooms around glowing fires, with shadows dancing on the walls, surrounded by men in rapture, whose minds drifted in and out of rhymes and runes in hypnotic journeys of imaginary vistas, moving back and forward in time and place. These tellers of rhythmic tales, of mesmerizing memory for a largely illiterate world, were a cross between the written word and the cinema or television of today, in which the listener could be transformed and absorbed into the sounds of words, resonating like the strings of an instrument being plucked and strummed.
Today, we find that our society, not even three hundred years old, has fallen from grace and has lost all respect or understanding for history and the appreciation for the arts. We are living in a time in which art has been debased to mere craft and that expression has written mankind completely out of the equation and focuses only on the selfishness and self-centeredness of the modern individual. Our poetry has lost all rhythm and rhyme, and where it does exist, it is a reflection of nothing less than superficial and childish vulgarity.
We have become a people of characters but without character. We are a civilization at the threshold of our Dark Ages, in which art and beauty and our heroic past are being lost. We slip into the ooze as the tide washes in and the sulfurous methane bubbles up from the muck, reminding us that civilizations are very finite and the smell that burns our nostrils is the waste of eons of past generations emulsified at our feet. We stand at the edge as the tide comes in. When man destroys the works of its sculptors, it is a bad omen, but when it destroys the statues of its poets, writers, and history itself, it is the brand that we must bear – the end of civilization.
Cliff, your post is spot on. I have been thinking these same things, and preaching about the Dark Ages coming upon us for years. I taught college history, and made my students try to see the folly in not learning from the past. My school teaches critical thinking skills and we try to give the students the opportunity to work out what they see as solutions. Unfortunately, many of them come from indoctrination in public schools, but others don’t and I truly enjoyed the thinking ones. Anyway, art has been my biggest argument to keep all monuments, and statues. They are products of their time, and some of our Confederate monuments are worth much more as sculpture than what they are paying to destroy them. It truly is a reenactment of the French Revolution with a lot of Bolshevik Revolution in the mix.
And I fear for where it goes next.
When push comes to shove, few U.S. senators will vote to keep Confederate monuments in the battlefield parks, not when doing so might see a senator called a”racist.”
First, “just the evil Confederate monuments in Richmond” will be… removed. Then, Confederate monuments in public places (outside National Battlefields) must be removed. Now, the Battlefield memorialization is under attack.
Where is this going? Did you know that there is a movement under way, since 2017, to rewrite the Constitution of the United States? 34 States must agree to a Convention; Wyoming became the 29th State to sign on a couple of years ago.
Another resource that may be available is the Congressional Battlefield Caucus. Its current members are:
Matt Cartwright (D) PA, District 8
Tom Cole (R) OK, District 4
Jeff Fortenberry, (R) NE, District 1
French Hill, (R) AR, District 2
Ron Kind, (D) WI, District 3 (co-chair)
Betty McCullum, (D) MN, District 4
Elise Stefanik, (R) NY, District 21 (co-chair)
Bennie Thompson, (D) MS, District 2
typical…..look closely at where these people are from………can’t help but be a fair governing body for the SOUTH! RIGHT??????
Not surprised … this is the plan. Next will be churches and cemeteries. The woke cult won’t be satisfied until all Monuments are removed, and the Confederate battle flag made illegal. Their template is how Germany treats anything Nazi related. To the woke cult, the Confederacy is barely better than the Nazis. They won’t be fully satisfied until Confederate remains are removed from cemeteries and tossed in a landfill.
And of course, like the Germans purity, what will they do to Confederate descendants? There are millions of us.
I’m not worried about that. Most descendants of Confederate soldiers know how to assert their Second Amendment rights, if need be. And, I suspect that most SJWs are scared of guns.
Reparations. 1619 Project.
That may well happen as there are calls to remove Confederate remains from Arlington National cemetery
I’m unclear on what Senator Elizabeth Warren is trying to do with the Confederate graves and Confederate memorial at Arlington National Cemetery. The news reports are vague and confusing. Could anyone elaborate? It appears she’s willing to leave the graves undisturbed, but wants the memorial torn down. Is that right?
If u visit the confederate memorial at Arlington you will notice it is impossible to remove the monument without desecrating the graves around it and Warren cares little about th ok see remains
I warned people of this in 2017. Some listened. Some did not. But when I heard regular people around New Orleans say “we do not have monuments to Nazi soldiers” I knew this would happen. I knew it would happen when Lee become Darth Vader without the cool suit and redemption arc. The real Lee was redeemed. The Lee of our imagination today is a eternally damned.
It is a mixture of moral certainty, the cathartic joy of destroying what you detest, and the fact that defeating inanimate objects is easier than addressing global warming, wealth inequality, collapsing infrastructure, etc. It is also the logic of revolution. When the Christians rose within the Roman Empire, they destroyed the statues to the old gods. The Jacobins did the same in France to the graves and statues of the nobility. The Nazis banned “degenerate” art and the communists destroyed “bourgeois” art. This is what extremists do.
I do enjoy some schadenfreude when those who said “Washington will never be touched” watch him fall. Or when Grant and Sherman are called out for what they did after 1865. It is not that I agree with dragging Washington, Grant, and Sherman in the mud for public humiliation, but rather, I surrender to its inevitably and wish to derive some joy from watching those who said I was wrong eat crow.
Like so many other pro-statue advocates, you attempt to discredit those who genuinely object to Confederate monuments in public venues by citing off-the-wall actions of the radical fringe. The vast majority of people who oppose Confederate memorials in public places don’t want to tear down statues to Grant, Washington, Jefferson, etc.
Your comments are tantamount to someone criticizing conservatives because of the wacko actions of far-right zealots like the QAnon conspiracy crowd, citizen militiamen, white supremacists, anti-mask nuts, etc.
I agree with Sean here. Many people chose to object to Confederate monuments by casting the Confederacy, and those who see some positive things to remember about it, in the worst possible way. People who supported Confederate statues were Lost Causers! Confederates were nothing but traitors and white supremacists! (When those of us who saw some value in those statues, because to us they symbolized the bravery of our ancestors, we were told to shut up). Shallow, thoughtless, emotion-driven like that only enabled the statue-pulling mob.
Those who assured us that Confederate statues on national battlefields would never be in jeopardy—their credibility is shot now. They’ve enabled a new normal for how American history is treated. It’s now a perpetual target for activists.
Are there any monument to William T. Sherman anywhere? If so, go take a picture of them while they are still up. In his autobiography, written twenty years after the Civil War, Sherman wrote how he was glad that industrious farmers and ranchers had take the Western U.S. away from “useless Indians.” His words, not mine.
Oh, and the city of Dallas just removed the statue of the Texas Ranger from Love Field Airport. Welcome to our new normal.
Thanks a lot, Lost Cause Police.
My husband and I visited Gettysburg for the first time 2 years ago. We are both Army Veterans and Northerners. I can tell you that we wept at the site of Pickett’s Charge for ALL the brave soldiers on BOTH sides who fought gallantly regardless of affiliation. We recognize Gen’l Lee as a brilliant military tactician (much better than Grant), and appreciate the tales of Confederate bravery as much as Union. By removing Confederate statues at Nat’l Parks you are removing half the story. We do not condone removing statues – rather we encourage ADDING statues to fully tell history in all its good, bad, and ugly.
The decision to remove the statue of the Texas Ranger, was prompted by an excerpt from a soon-to-be-published book about the law enforcement agency’s nearly 200-year history, which includes episodes of police brutality and racism.
One excerpt from a book that technically doesn’t even exist yet? Wow! Now that’s ‘clout’!
Well, if that’s the standard now, then any statues of William T. Sherman need to go. He called Native Americans “useless.”
What many appear to be overlooking, or ignoring, is that the statues and monuments in such places as Gettysburg were in large measure both symbols and measures to reconcile, unify and maintain the United States of America. In my opinion, that purpose continues to the present day. I am not an American. I have no dog in this fight, but anyone can see there is a lot of fight left in the dogs.
“The monument fever that swept the nation last month has finally seemed to quiet down” Really? Do you have evidence to support that assertion? I see the opposite.
THIS MUST STOP NOW . TAKE A STAND FOR AMERICA OR LOSE HER .I COULD WRITE A NOVEL HERE BUT IF YOU LOVE OUR COUNTRY YOU KNOW WHAT IS RIGHT. IF YOU DON’T NOTHING I SAY WILL CHANGE YOUR MIND JUST LEAVE. . I DID NOT SERVE MY COUNTRY AS A VETERAN TO SEE MINORITY RULE OVER THE MAJORITY , GOD BLESS AMERICA .
Confederate Monuments at National Military Parks such as Gettysburg, should remain. They mark the positions of Confederate troops, and are an aid to the interpretation of the battle.
Plus, the descendants of some of these Confederate regiments did serve in later American wars. The 116th Infantry regiments are direct descendants of the Stonewall Brigade, and the 115th Infantry Regiment are direct descendants of the 1st Maryland, CSA.
Recall that the 116th Infantry Regiment, and the 115th Infantry Regiment landed on Omaha Beach on June 6th, 1944.
My understanding is that some members of the Confederate army actually served in later American conflicts. General Joseph wheeler is one example.
There were several actually, and the sons of many Confederate officers served. There was a Spanish American War monument moved in Richmond because the general had also served in the Confederate Army. It is a mental illness. And these monuments were put up locally for local people. They are not United States Monuments, they were not paid for by taxes, they were put up by people who knew the men, who wanted to honor them, or give them a marker other than some grave lost to history. They are regional and what a community decides to honor is not the business of current residents who have no identity to the place, or some idiot politician in California.
President McKinley, a Civil War Union veteran, worked with former Confederate officers to get some back into the army, like Wheeler, Tom Rosser I believe, Fitz Lee, etc. because he wanted to make the US a whole again and to move thousands of blue uniformed troops through the South to Tampa for the Cuban invasion and have the Southern people be in full support. It worked. McKinley was very astute in that aspect. It also set the tone for Teddy Roosevelt’s 1905 return of captured CS flags held by the War Department after the aborted attempts of 1887-1888 where the GAR rose in indignation as the thought. The Spanish-American War, as a healer for the wounds of the Civil War, has not been studied as it should be.
I think I can safely predict, with the avalanche of the Cancel Culture, fully backed by numerous elected officials at all levels, will probably succeed, maybe not this time, but eventually succeed, in taking down all things Confederate in our Civil War battlefield parks. The momentum is too strong and there is not enough push-back on the same level – and those that want to do this throw the “R Bomb” to take down adversaries with aplomb, will stop any counter-push. I regularly lead tours of the Fort Donelson Campaign including US Army staff rides and cannot wait to tell people about how US Grant showed up with an army and gunboats for some weird reason because there was nobody there to fight against! Maybe some imaginary foe? Maybe he was really drunk at the time? Maybe his boss Halleck had nothing better to do? And for that matter, why was Grant in command of something when there was no reason at all to raise and equip it when there was nobody to fight against because the other side simply did not exist? They had been totally erased!
And if you think that the Cancellers will stop when the monuments are down and put “into museums,” that these museums will be safe – they will not be safe!. Two have been attacked already – the National Civil War Naval Museum in Columbus, GA was an arson victim that destroyed most of the fantail of a CS warship along with other relics that were going to be conserved; and the UDC building in Richmond which, having been there a couple times for research, had a small museum including the rare (25 or so ever made of this pattern) battle flag of the 31st Virginia Infantry plus a wonderful library and files for the historian to work with. That site was also an arson victim; the books, many files and the flag are totally destroyed! And we had been told that museums was exactly where Confederate flags needed to be! Until they are not – they are needed to be erased.
When I get asked about what’s going on by lay friends due to my being a Civil War historian, I just respond with a simple line – “Joe Stalin, in his special place in Hell, is laughing at us!”
Monuments to both sides should be left on the battlefield.
Especially in Gettysburg.
I am a Richmonder and the monuments on Monument
Ave have been an issue for years. In 2017 it seemed clear
they would be put in a museum. That’s okay with me.
Battlefield monuments is another issue altogether.
I, too, appreciate this notice as letters need to be written.
I grew up a white girl in SC during Civil Rights movement, my father, a progressive
Presbyterian minister who worked hard on interracial council of black
and white ministers in our town. My dad received threats from the KKK, as my family
did also. I am a Southener but no where close to a
Civil War history needs to be taught correctly, esp re: confusion over
succession as existed at the time. Confederate leaders
were never taken to trial for treason. It was all called
Black men (landowners, I realize) were then allowed to vote
in 1866. NO woman was allowed to vote (regardless of race until
65 years later.
Slavery existed in the North and South. African Slaves built NYC–built
the wall that became Wall Street. Europeans involved in
slave trade as well as Africans. Complicity all around and being
hidden, it seems. Slavery gets heaped on the South.
That said, I am a Democrat and will be writing to
representatives. History doesn’t need to be erased.
It needs to be taught.
I will vote for Biden as the person presently in office
is wrecking this country imo and not fit to serve.
Thanks again for this article.
To update the quote from Martin Niemoller:
“First they came for the Confederates, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Confederates.
Then they came for the founding fathers, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a founding father.
Then they came for Columbus, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not Columbus.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
Any problem with taking down the statue of Lee at Antietam? It was erected by a Lee admirer on private land in 2002 that then came into the NPS. It is historically inaccurate as Lee was not on that part of the field during the battle and his wrists were in splints so he could not be holding his horse’s reins and binoculars as depicted. It should go.
That sounds like a rationalization for removing the statue, not a real reason.
Or, I hope you’re joking.
I saw this on another FB site and was so impressed with what it says that I am going to just paste it here as is. I do not know this individual, and he certainly is not a ‘FB Friend’ of mine. I came upon it and said to myself this needs to be posted where ever and whenever these subjects come up. And you will probably see this again on these ECW threads. It speaks to this subject better than I ever can…
“On the rebel flag: I have always been a proud Yankee, Union and Freedom Forever!, so it’s like the Cowboys to an Eagles fan. You wouldn’t catch me dead flying that thing.
But my southern friends don’t see it that way and part of how we ended the Civic War, and the reason we didn’t have decades of guerilla war, was that we made an agreement with the South to RESPECT their heritage, even in defeat.
What was important, in this order, was, we saved the Union and we freed the slaves. Lincoln wanted to free the slaves, but he knew that if we didn’t save the Union very bad things would have happened. History shows us what that might have looked like.
So we damned Yankees agreed to give old Johnny Reb his due. We licked the Rebs, but we also knew that to preserve the Union and win them back to our cause, we couldn’t disrespect their honor and heritage. In turn, the Rebs became fierce patriots whose service to this country remains peerless. They more than atoned for the Civil War in their proceeding defense of our country since then.
Now the Democrats, ever the party of civil conflict and violence, want to break our word. The progeny of Johnny Reb must now be made ashamed, they must be canceled. They must choose between their ancestors or this new version of a self-loathing America that is defined solely by her mistakes and failures, ignoring the fact our country is and was the greatest and freest country in human history!
This is all too much.
For a second even I was tempted to fly Johnny Reb’s banner, as a token of respect to my southern friends. But I really can’t, to me it’s just a fallen flag from a vanquished foe of my country, but I totally see why to my southern friends it’s not that at all. It’s just a token of respect to their ancestors, many of whom, man for man, were just fighting for their home state.
I don’t agree at all with the Southern Cause, using state’s right to justify slavery is morally reprehensible to me. But Johnny Reb wasn’t even attuned to any of those things, he just loved his state, back when that was still a thing, and it is still with me, I love Pennsylvania more than any other state in this Union and it is even more precious to me than America itself.
I’ve studied the history of Germany in ww2 intensely. I can tell you, having poured over documents and letters from soldiers and their kin, even the German soldier in ww2, whose cause was even worse than any interpretation of the Southern Cause, was mostly just a young man serving his country. Few German soldier saw much past the seeming necessity and mercilessness of the times to serve Germany.
The Southerner was mostly just serving his state. Most people have no such affection for their state, so they can’t grasp how Johnny Reb felt and why he fought. For these folks in grey and buttercup, their state called them and that was enough. Period. Just because you don’t get that doesn’t mean you can gainsay it.
So I won’t fly the flag of Johnny Reb, but neither will I join the cancel culture hysterics and their bid to open old wounds that could once again threaten our Union.
As I said, my motto is “Union and Freedom Forever!” I will brook nothing that threatens our Union, not even if it means letting the South honor its ancestors and its heritage, even if they hold no allure to me.”
This is brilliant! And that is all Southerners ask — let us honor who we choose. That is ALL they every asked. And the fact that the country could have reunited so soon after a brutal war like that, shows how far backwards we have gone by allowing the wrong leaders in this country. It is ripping it apart again.
Let’s not fight the Civil War again. Let’s not forget a lot
of positives were accomplished during the Civil Rights movement in
the 60s. My gosh, has that been forgotten? Much of the
South fought for Civil Rights then–my family included.
The Klan threatened us because my parents were outspoken
in our SC town. I was 10. Do not conflate “the
South” with white supremacy please. It is wrong and
it is being done. Did families like mine fight for Civil Rights
in the 60s as Southeners for nothing???
Excellent. Especially this part.
“Most people have no such affection for their state, so they can’t grasp how Johnny Reb felt and why he fought. For these folks in grey and buttercup, their state called them and that was enough. Period. Just because you don’t get that doesn’t mean you can gainsay it.”
Back then, many people’s primary loyalty was to their state. The Civil War changed that. But it took the Civil War to change that.
This is a thoughtful, respectful take on the situation. Lost Cause Police, this is how it’s done.
What this does not mention is that, according to much historical record, some of the strongest defenders of former Confederate soldiers were Union soldiers they had fought against. The Federals recognized who and what those former Confederates were, and what they did, and why, and respected them as fellow veterans. So, I suggest that when one looks at current attitudes and opinions one should also consider those of the people at that time. They were there. We were not.. We have their written word, but not the subjective knowledge and understanding they had.
Unfortunately, when Monument Avenue was being torn down, some of us were trying to bring up these very same points to preserve them, but the prevailing attitude was that they were all traitors (even presidential pardons couldn’t remove that stain) and that all those who erected the statues were just white supremacists (because everyone was in the Jim Crow south) trying to intimidate African-Americans (because there’s no other logical reason to spend thousands of dollars to erect such statues).
Well, now the powers that be are taking those very arguments and applying them to everything. If we shouldn’t have statues of ‘racists’ and ‘traitors’ in public places, why should they be on federal land? Or even cemeteries, or museums (or even private land next)?
Aren’t all of these removals and bannings violating our 1st Amendment rights? Does anyone else see shadows of the ‘Salem Witch Hunt’ and McCarthy’s ‘Communist Witch Hunt’ in all of this?
BTW, saw a report a couple days ago that the 77th New York Monument in Saratoga Springs, New York was vandalized. Maybe those that helped take down Monument Avenue with their words, will finally wake up and start defending their own.
What I also see in this history purge are elements of the bad side of the French Revolution, in particular the Jacobins and the Reign of Terror as well as the Maoist Cultural Revolution. It is happening here…now…by little spoiled brats who have nothing else in their pathetic lives to bitch about but are offended by history because figures from 1492 through the late 19th Century were not as perfect as this little babies seem to think they are themselves. This is made even worse by elected officials and professors in colleges egging them on because they fully agree with the sentiments.
I would refer all to the spirit of reconciliation by those who were at Appomattox – the soldiers on both sides were able to put aside the bitter years of war and offer each other a salute. Rations were shared by Union soldiers as the confederates were starving. The terms offered by Grant to Lee were in the spirit of Lincoln’s second inaugural address – with charity to all and malice toward none – but I fear that the democratic haters have forgotten all that and although they preach peace and love they practice hate
Debra Page-are you here in Richmond? I am. The
entire monument issue has bothered me for the very
reasons you stated above. Throwing around “treason”
and “traitors” is incorrect historically. None of the Confederate
officers were even tried for treason. The Union dropped
it, even against Jefferson Davis. Union was concerned in
court of law that THEY would be found as the aggressors.
The entire succession issue wasn’t so clear as people
I am for Civil Rights for sure. I don’t think Confederate
leaders and soldiers could be called treasonous
and traitors when the Union refused to call them that
at the time. All that was dropped.
New book (and fascinating one) from law professor
at UVA just out: Secession on Trial (C. Nicoletti)
should be read by Americans.
Or the Smithsonian article about the Trial that
Wasn’t (re: Jefferson Davis)
Anyone who has read much history understands this treason argument. It is based on NOTHING! Now, if the Pentagon generals who should know some history would just get the truth. They are as dumb as the rioters! Wanting to change military bases! Duh! Thanks for those book and article references also. How have so many politicians (who SHOULD make it a point to know history) become so ignorant?
I don’t think the treason argument/issue is well understood in general. Or the fact that secession was not so easily defined at the time. I don’t think
this in in U.S. History classes in general and it’s too bad because it’s incredibly interesting. Not clear-cut at all.
I, like you, have never heard “treason” and “traitor” thrown around as
it is now. Wish Grant and Lee were here to tell everyone
of their discussion and agreements at Appomattox.
Another good book: How the North Promoted, Prolonged and
Profited from Slavery: COMPLICITY by Farrow, Lang,
No, I live in Spotsylvania, just down the street from Elwood, where Stonewall Jackson’s arm is buried.
Just had another thought, with statues being removed and flags being banned, will Confederate uniforms be next, effectively killing all future living history and reenactment events?
Debra, could be, which would be ridiculous. I really don’t see how
all this will help with Civil Rights (including police brutality
at all). The police issue HAS to be dealt with. Taking down all
these monuments isn’t going to resolve problem within police depts.
In part, I think people in general are acting out in
my ways as result of coronavirus. Anything for distraction
and to get out of house (and discharge pent-up
frustration and fear) even if unsafe.
I have personally never, NEVER, heard the terms “Treason” or “traitors” in my LIFE until the last year or so when it comes to the Confederacy. NOW all of a sudden the usual suspects spew that in unison, as if DIRECTED to do so! The statues and monuments were never an issue when Obama was in office, and that includes his first year in office when his party had compete control of the Congress including a veto-proof Senate. Or with any other presidential administration for that matter. And as we have all seen, it really ISN’T about Confederate markers, it’s EVERYTHING. Attacking the Confederate markers provides the cover for the animals in the streets to attack literally any and all symbols of this country. It’s the same crap that has transpired woth the so-called ‘peaceful protesters’. While many of them have endeavored to be indeed that, there are others among them who rae playing the role for the express purpose of allowing the looter and rioters to do their mayhem. The ones who stated that they wanted the statues ‘moved’ and ‘relocated’ are the very ones who have proven that to to be a lie, they were marked for destruction from the get-go. And now the battlefields and museums will be the next targets. Of that you can be assured, because we are starting to see that with ‘proposals’ like this.
This did happen a few years back, when BLM was protesting another police incident, and they were holding hands across interstates and blocking up traffic. The Confederate statues in Dallas, New Orleans, and Baltimore came down.
There also were courthouse monuments in Florida that were being protested (ones honoring the local men that fought). One county in particular (Broward Country, maybe?) held a council meeting and elected to keep the monument. The protesters said they would keep protesting until the council changed it’s decision. So a few days later the council met again and elected to remove the monument. How is this democracy anymore?
To make decisions based on threats is not an act of free men. Or fearless men.
28 years in the US Army, I saw and appreciated many military monuments and memorials all across this country. From little country villages to the great monuments in D.C. But, you never really appreciate them the same way until you lose a buddy or two in armed conflict. T
This really is disgraceful desecration of memorials all across this land. Even the memorials that depict Lee or Beauregard still call on the viewer to recall those who fell.
It would also be interesting to learn what they talked about when Lee visited Grant at the White House. There is no record, however, as far as I know.
The historical ignoramuses had better not even think about it! Removing ANY monuments, Confederate or Union, would destroy the context of the battlefield and present an unbalanced and incomplete picture of what actually happened there.
I agree entirely and also want the battlefields left alone and the monuments there intact so that the entire history is told and not a one sided presentation – there is a whirlwind overtaking this country and if it is not stopped it will lead to our destruction from within never mind the Russians or the Chinese – we are destroying ourselves and it needs to stop
Does not matter.The younger generation of “historians ” and their nuanced views are culpable in this.The mob is only interested in submission, not having a conversation. Yes, the monuments will go, then the actual land. Politicians will not stand up for fear of the word.
Hi-I don’t think their views are nuanced. I don’t think the history I learned
in school was nuanced. Just a winner’s view. That’s not nuanced history.
Today it seems like the history is not put in context. I hear all this “treason” and
“traitors” re: Confederate leaders/states but not hearing part where
none were put on trial for either. Not even J
Davis. No trials for treason and no wondering by
many today–hmm…what was that about? Was tied into
Constitutional issues/states’s rights, etc.
If monuments taken from battlefield, then will
be a shame and wrong imo
Simple why none were tried for treason…..how could you get an impartial jury to convict, when the trials would be held in the States that left the Union?
IIRC, Johnson pardoned most, if not all those who fought to break up the Union….aka …traitors.
Perhaps of interest:
Smithsonian Magazine online
The Trial of the Century that Wasn’t:
the case against Jefferson Davis, the president
of the confederacy, would have been the legal
showdown of the ages
Also perhaps of interest, the book, Secession on
Trial by C. Nicoletti
“The post-Civil War treason prosecution of Confederate Jefferson
Davis was seen as a test case on the major constitutional
question that animated the Civil War: the constitutionality
of secession. The case never went to trial, however, because
it threatened to undercut the meaning and significance of
Union victory. This book describes the interactions of the lawyers
working on both sides of the Davis case, who saw its potential
to disrupt the battlefield’s verdict against succession. In the aftermath
of the Civil War, America was engaged in a wide-ranging debate
over the legitimacy and effectiveness of war as a
method of legal adjudication…”
Fascinating, well-researched book. Highly recommend
Secession not declared to be unconstitutional
until 1869 (Texas v. White) which went to Supreme Court.
Secession was declared to be un-Constitutional, on April 9, 1865, when Lee and the rest of the traitors in the ANV, raised the White Flag of Surrender, at Appomattox.
Secession not clearly addressed in Constitution and therefore the plethora of
arguments, opinions debated over the years prior to the Civil War.
Was not clear cut until ruling in 1869 with Texas v White and US Supreme Court.
One question in particular is notable in all this: What if the
Confederate states had won the war? Which could have
happened. There would have been no argument regarding
secession in that case. It would have been decided via
war not through Constitutional means. That is not
desirable way for Constitutional issues to be settled–
via literal war within a democracy as opposed to Constititional
law and clarity.
Again, if the Confederate States had won the war,
secession would have been decided then and there
by virtue of war (not a good system) but way it
would have gone. Because secession not clearly
addressed in Constitution as many interpretations and
debates showed. There is much that goes back years to
back this up. There wouldn’t have been talk of treason NOW if
that had occurred. We would be living in a situation
more like the European Union.
Btw, there were Northern areas and States which
considered at the outset joining the Confederate States which I
find interesting. NY was one. There were others.
The Smithsonian article I referenced above is particularly
good as is the book about Secession on Trial at end
of Civil War. Only it never went to trial. I understand
what you say regarding the position the North was in
if it tried Davis in what probably would have been Richmond
because of how the law reads. Davis was held in prison
for 2 years while the North tried to figure out what to do.
Never was it a foregone conclusion if Davis was tried in Richmond that
he would have been found not guilty. At that
point there would have been black jurists also who
had been emancipated. It truly would have been the
trial of the century (that didn’t happen.)
Even if Davis had been found not guilty the case could
have been taken all the way up to the Supreme Court.
Yet, any trials were dropped by the Union.
Again, I ask, and in good faith, what if the Confederate
states had won? A Constitutional issue would have
been “decided” by WAR not by LAW. Not a good thing either way.
1869 Texas v. White Supreme Court decision made
what was unclear and debatable, clear and not up
for debate once and for all.
If further interested please refer to the article and
book recommended as both are well-researched and intriguing
about an unclear complicated issue at the time, and
decisions that should not be decided Constitutionally
in a democracy by war. Not good. Regardless of whom wins.
As has been pointed out before, there were no labels of ‘traitors’ until the DNC recently ordered their always selective outrage to be generated towards the reminders of the Confederacy, and we see how dutifully the usual suspects obey.
There are reasons why the participants in the Confederate government and military weren’t prosecuted. Among them are the precedents set by PREVIOUS genuine attempts to secede from ‘the Union’. In the very early 1800s, before the War of 1812, there was such a ‘movement’ that was supported by among others John Quincy Adams. Those who supported that movement did not start a war, but they did approve of the action in itself. It petered out when it couldn’t generate enough support from others or from elsewhere. That carried on THROUGH the War of 1812. Read up on the Hartford Convention some time.
As far as the Constitution itself, the ‘right to secede’ was not written into that, There are those who believe in the concept of natural law, which, as I understand it, is all about WHERE individuals and others rights come from. I have read in quite a few sources that the Constitution would never have been ratified if the representatives of what would soon be the former colonies did not believe they could secede if their grievances warranted it. Remember that they had just bled profusely to gain their own freedoms and independence from Great Britain..
Regarding the Civil War itself, the ‘right’ of the southern states to secede was supported and endorsed by quite a few folks in the north, of all political parties, as well as quite a bit of support from various newspapers. But the post war sentiments of most, with some exceptions do not appear to support the beliefs that the Confederates were all traitors. The post war ‘reunions’ where participants of battles like that at Gettysburg shows how deeply the spirit of reconciliation ran, and remained. Also, as has been pointed out, ‘to the victors go the spoils’.
So those who today use labels like ‘traitors’ do so because that doesn’t require any work. It’s easy. And by doing so they hope to excuse and defend the inexcusable and the indefensible, like the present mayhem being carried out by TRAITORS (they do call themselves ‘insurrectionists after all!) who use the excuse of ‘traitorous’ Confederate symbols as their reason to assault virtually ALL symbols of this country.
Below is a link to an interesting editorial from 1860. It represents but one view, so I am not putting this here as ‘proof’ of anything, it’s just an interesting article.
Douglas Pauly, Thank you for the information above. I was aware that the Constitution would
not have been ratified if the representatives didn’t believe they had the right to secede if their grievances were warranted. Yes, there was a variety of reasons why Davis et al weren’t tried-thank you for clarifying the earlier precedents that played a part also.
Thank you again! Then, there was that conversation between Grant and
Lee at Appomattox….etc…
The book, Secession on Trial by Nicoletti, law professor (copyright 2017) might be of interest to you.
nygiant 1952–white liberal guilt
was unrelated to Goldwater. My parents
had same so was not new to my generation.
I’m done with it, anyway. Doesn’t help blacks nor myself.
I’ll continue living in the South with my Southern accent and
if the vogue thing to do is verbally broad brush the South, it
Things swing one way then the other. Wish there was
moderation in this country but not how it tends to go.
For sure, imo, I fervently hope the present president is not in office
past this November.
If the rebels had won…
1. Imperial Germany would have won World War 1
2. Imperial Japan would have had an impeded access to China and the Pacific Ocean Islands
3. Imperial Germany would have been able to fight a 1-front war against the Soviet Union.
4. Jackie Robinson would not have broken the color barrier in Baseball.
As far as Afro-American on the jury…I doubt that. The Fourteenth Amendment’s equal protection clause (1868) was not thought initially to give blacks the same political rights as whites—neither the right to sit on juries nor the right to vote. A separate amendment, the Fifteenth (1870), therefore was necessary to extend the franchise to blacks, and this amendment did not guarantee blacks the right to hold office or serve on juries. In 1875, however, a Federal Civil Rights Act declared, “[N]o citizen . . . shall be disqualified for service as a grand or petit juror in any court of the United States, or of any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.”
So…do you feel the US would have waited til 1875 to try Davis?
Wasn’t the Independence of the American Colonies decided by WAR, and not by LAW?
Re: your last sentence:
The Revolutionary War was not a Civil War.
A Civil War not best way to solve Constitutional issue,
ie, secession allowable or not. In a democracy that
needed to be clear in the constitution but it wasn’t
because there were many who wanted the right to
secede left as an option. Then when the Confederate
States wanted out of Union, Lincoln decided no,
he didn’t want the Union to be divided. Some suggested he
“let the South go.”
As a white Southerner, who was 8 years old in small SC town at time
of Civil Rights movement in the 60s, with parents who were active in the
fight for equality for blacks, with my family threatened in scary ways by the KKK
because of my parents’ strong activism, my dad, a progressive Presbyterian
minister, serving on interfaith council with his job on the line–it is as if that was all
for nothing. I find myself at this point in time, feeling that blame is again being
heaped on the South alone (the North had African Slavery–NYC built
by slave labor-even the wall that became Wall Street. Perhaps Wall Street needs a new name). The North profited and promoted
slavery. So much complicity. Europe, Africa, Northern and
As a white Southener in 2020, I find it offensive to be considered
racist or white supremacist on the basis that I live in Virginia and
have a southern accent. I grew up with white liberal
guilt. I’m putting that burden down.
Please see my recommendations above. Excellent resources.
Actually, the American Revolution was a Civil War, as Loyalist military regiments were recruited into the British Army, as were Patriot military units recruited in the Continental Army, in the American Colonies.
IIRC, Buchanan was President when the South started to leave the Union, and he didn’t do a thing to stop them. And my history books say the South said NO,, when they fired on Fort Sumter…Federal property.
By 1860, slavery was abolished in most Northern states, so that issue is moot, at the time of the Civil War. Now, if you wanted to argue the the North was racist, in 1860, I would agree with you.
Perhaps, if the South had not embraced the Republican Party in 1964, when Goldwater and successive GOP Presidential Candidates employed the “Southern strategy”, there wouldn’t have to be any Liberal guilt?
I’d read more about Truman and the turn in the Democratic Party to insure Civil Rights for All American citizens.
A few points, if I may….
1.“The Confederates weren’t traitors — they were Americans!”
The response to this claim is the definition of treason which, as defined by Cornell Law School, refers to anyone who, owing allegiance to America, wages war against America. Every Confederate soldier was by definition committing treason. Are we then to have monuments to traitors, or fly their flag in places of honor?…So, Cornell Law School calls them traitors too.
2.What part of the Hartford Convention do you want me to read up on?…The part where they discussed removing the three-fifths compromise, which gave slave states disproportionate power in Congress? As far as succession is concerned….There are a number of reasons why historians doubt that the New England Federalists were seriously considering secession. All the states, especially Connecticut with its claims to western lands, stood to lose more than they would gain.
3. The FF had intended the Union to be perpetual…please read the Preamble ot the Articles of Confederation.
So, tell me why Americans should hold monuments to traitors, in such high regard?
Confederate monuments are not for the whole country. They are for the community whose citizens paid for them through private and very precious coin collected to honor their husbands, brothers, fathers, and sons. I don’t understand your bitterness and hate, and your contempt for our view on this. They were never considered traitors as they were inspired by their rebel grandfathers of 1776. The local monuments are for US. Southerners have a strong identity. We are the only part of this nation who has known defeat and destruction of our homes and livelihood. The only other thing close are the Japanese citizens put in concentration camps during WWII in the American West. That was a United States government who did that too, and I suppose they considered them traitors due to their ethnicity. How wrong that was. Now we are being treated the same way because of our ancestors. But I will always be proud of my family’s part. A southern writer once said “The South is America’s Ireland”. It is the rich literary heart of this country, and much of that is because of our heritage and a long history of oppression– unlike ANY other part of the country.
Those monuments were nothing more than intimidation towards the newly liberated Afro-Americans, to remind them of their servitude, and to remind them the they would not receive justice. They honor traitors to the United States.
You are off on your WW 2 history. There is absolutely NO comparison between the Southern traitors and those Japanese-Americans interned in WW 2 Those Japanese Americans fought for the United States to defend their homeland…they became the 442nd infantry regiment…the most highly decorated unit in WW 2.
Recall that the long history of oppression, is one of oppressing Afro-Americans.
You keep referring to a ‘definition of treason’ as an excuse to suddenly be outraged and to justify the mayhem being committed by the very political party today that was responsible for creating those ‘traitors’. I can offer up plenty of disagreement from legit sources to counter what one school has to say about it. The historic reality proves that the VAST majority of Americans then through now disagree with that assessment. I say again that I realize it’s convenient to utter. It’s easy. It requires no work. It’s an awful lot like throwing around the word “racist” in discussions about politics or society because again, that doesn’t require any work, and it can often serve as convenient deflection.
The mentioning of the Hartford Convention was simply to illustrate the time length that was involved for serious discussions about seceding in the northeast at that time. It was within the convention itself that those who hoped to get some support and assistance towards that end placed their faith. They failed. But the point is that there was indeed precedent for such considerations. I’m confident that if beliefs that secession were ‘not serious’ then that would not warrant mention in these times.
Oh, and given YOUR reliance on labeling certain folks as traitors, then you DO agree that John Qunicy Adams, as well as all those others who ever contemplated secession, should be viewed as ‘traitors’ and ‘cancelled’, don’t you? The man did go on to be a US President. And if ‘the Union was to be in perpetuity’, then even THINKING or mentioning secession should be enough to label someone a ‘traitor’ using YOUR criteria, isn’t it? Hmmm?
You can take that definition , or the one in the US Constitution…either way….the Southerners who fought and reveled against the US Government…were traitors.
The Hartford Convention specifically opposed any step that might lead to disunion. If anyone tries to tell you the Hartford Convention was a secessionist convention, that “New England,” or even “Massachusetts” threatened secession there, or that the convention discussed secession, don’t believe them. The evidence is strongly against such claims.
Again, you are conveniently and selectively employing a definition that does NOT match how the American people as a collective felt. THAT is reality. Only when the DNC in recent times ordered the selective out rage are the usual minions dutifully complying. That TOO is reality.
And nobody, especially myself, ever said or implied that the Hartford Convention was a ‘secessionist convention’. One more time, it was hoped by those who were actively pursuing support for their secessionist cause to find that within the Convention. They did not.
Doug…Your words….”The mentioning of the Hartford Convention was simply to illustrate the time length that was involved for serious discussions about seceding in the northeast at that time. ”
And I’ve shown you…it really wasn’t at all about leaving the Union.
Let’s agree to use the US Constitution definition of treason….HMMMM?
SL…it is. a fallacy the Black slaves carried weapons and fought for the Confederacy. I acknowledge that Black slaves did the work that soldiers usually perform, freeing up those soldier to actually fight in combat. Thats why the EP was a war measure.
I delivered babies, at one time.
Again, your deflection involving my words is noted. At least I expect as much now…
You can have your own opinion, but you can’t have your own definition of treason.
I’m not the one throwing around the term ‘treason’ on the orders of the political party I favor.
Actually, I ‘m using the same definition that existed in 1860 and today….the US Constitution. I don’t have to pickax definition that fits a political view.
Nygiant–since you seem clear on treason (as connected to secession)in the context of the time then why was there
unclear and differing points of view hotly debated at time of Civil War?
To the point the Supreme Court made it finally clear in Texas v White years after the war.
There is plenty of evidence that indicates that the Constitution would
never have been ratified if the rights of states to secede was not allowable
Nygiant–Lincoln even considered letting the states go. He had the vision
of a Union though in a way that appeared to push further
than others had. So why would he even have considered letting the states go at all?
Then there’s the pesky part that no Cofederates were ever tried for treason…
SL..this is what Lincoln thought about secession…The secessionists claimed that according to the Constitution every state had the right to leave the Union. Lincoln claimed that they did not have that right. He opposed secession for these reasons:
1. Physically the states cannot separate.
2. Secession is unlawful.
3. A government that allows secession will disintegrate into anarchy.
4. That Americans are not enemies, but friends.
5. Secession would destroy the world’s only existing democracy, and prove for all time, to future Americans and to the world, that a government of the people cannot survive.
Lincoln may have thought the fifth point was the most important.
Please document for me, where Lincoln would have allowed the states to leave the Union.
As far as secession is concerned…Lincoln was aware that the Founding Fathers intended the Union to be perpetual…..please read the Preamble to the Articles of Confederation.
SL…if the traitors were tries in New York, then they would have been convicted.
But, the treason occurred in states like Virginia, South Carolina, Alabama…the states that rebelled….try getting a fair trial.
Nygiant–ya nevah know! NYC strongly considered seceding with the South, as did some other areas of the North. Might be if trial was held in NYC, the verdict could have
been not guilty. Wasn’t a given at all if trial in Richmond.
Law is the law anyway. If treason and traitors then should
have been trials. Fact that Jefferson Davis was held in jail while
the North squirmed and deferred, that bordered on illegality itself. Davis’ attorney (brilliant man) kept pushing the Union to try Davis. Get on with it. The attorney had no clear
assurances of the verdict he wanted–even in Richmond. No one knew. Yet the North froze up and then dropped the charges. No trials.. at all. Secession and slavery issues weren’t resolved by Constitutional means anyway but by war. Not good idea.
SL…If the South had not left the Union, but had stayed…then a Constitutional means of settling the issue ,could have been found.
The only person that was tried was Captain Henry Wirz, who was in charge of Andersonville Prison. It was a military court. They kept trying to get Wirz to implicate Davis, but he wouldn’t do it because there was no direct order from Davis to torture the Union prisoners. Wirz just didn’t have any resources. And it was proven later that most of the “eyewitnesses” were never even in Andersonville.
Oh, and if I’m not mistaken, the Lincoln conspirators were also brought before a military court, even though they were all civilians.
Debra–thanks for the information.
And yes, same NYC where in 1863 the NY Draft Riots occurred with the intentional burning
down of a black orphanage. “One of the bloodiest and most violent insurrections in American History.” Mobs of New Yorkers full of ethnic hatred and class
North has its part in slavery, abuse, unrest and horror and in midst of Civil War…
The Civil War was a more violent insurrection, with over 750,000 deaths.
ntgiant–yes, I know. Insurrection/rebellion is not same as war.
You’d just said if Davis had been tried in NYC he would have been found guilty and I said not
so fast. Then Debra added info about the NYC Draft Riots and intentional burning down of
black orphanage in 1863.
She’s correct too in goes to show can’t pin racism on “the South” and ignore the North’s
part. Again, I recommend: Complicity: How the North Promoted, Prolonged, and Profited
from Slavery by Farrow, Lang and Frank
“Startling…The scope of the North’s involvement with slavery is
staggering…This is history at best.” The Boston Globe
SL…read the comment again…I never mentioned NYC…I mentioned New York
Let’s not change the words now, shall we?
The jury is still out on the question the Lincoln conspirators received a fair trial The evidence proved they were guilty, but did they receive a fair trial…probably not. The murder occurred in Washington DC, and should have been tried by a civilian jury.
As far as Wirz is concerned….The precedent-setting Wirz case laid the legal foundation for the World War II Nuremberg War Crimes trials and the Global War on Terror military tribunals.
Is this the same New York that burned down a black orphanage during the 1863 Draft Riots??
Debra….New York consists of more than New York City. I never mentioned New York City…so my lawyer friends would saw you are presenting facts not in evidence.
You do know that there are other cities in New York, besides NYC which sent troops to fight the traitors.
But it does prove that people outside of the South can be racist. It also shows that there were Union soldiers who fought only to preserve the Union, but NOT to free the slaves.
No Northern cities erected a monument to those who were traitors though,.and none to White Supremacy.
But they did to honor their own war dead, which is exactly what the South did after Reconstruction and after they were actually able to afford to, since they were economically devastated after the war. There is nothing on any of those monuments that says anything about white supremacy. And you have have previously stated that they were pardoned in 1868. Why else would Johnson pardon them if they would still be considered traitors – they were able to vote again, they were able to hold national office again, they were even able to rejoin the army.
You seem to think that the presidential pardon did not exonerate or dissolve the ‘treason’. So then, does a legal divorce decree not dissolve a marriage?
Debra–it even went beyond what you wrote, it seems. When Lee
surrendered Grant gave Lee a “solemn parole of honor.” Grant protected Lee from any
treason trial. Grant wrote to Secretary of War Edwin Stanton insisting ” the officers and men paroled
at Appomattox CH cannot be tried for treason”…a parole carrying immunity from prosecution.
Grant told Johnson he’d resign his command rather than arrest Lee or any of his commanders.
The Northern commander did/said all this in protection of Lee et al, yet here we are
so very many years later hearing treason, traitor, white supremacist,
racist hurled around. It’s a mystery to me.
It’s a mystery to me, too, especially only 5 years from the end of the sesquicentennial commemorations. No one was saying racist or white supremacist or traitor then. A friend from work has a Union ancestor and I have a Confederate ancestor. He attended a real time tour with me at Spotsylvania following where my ancestor fought, and I attended the Upton’s charge real time tour with him (also on Spotsylvania) following where his ancestor fought. We both thoroughly enjoyed learning about the whole war (battles, leaders, soldiers, civilians, slaves).
But every couple of years, more and more Confederate statues, monuments, and memorials are being taken down or destroyed by these hate groups. We’ve been told “put them in a museum or cemetery, where they’ll be safe”, but they’re not even safe there anymore, which was the whole point of this original blog post. The battlefields are huge outdoor museums where you can learn about all aspects of the war, but people in Congress want to censor that, too, because someone might be “offended”, even though their removal offends me.
You and nygiant were talking about voting earlier, but who do you even vote for nowadays? You did mention how the current president is sexist and divisive, but he has attempted to stand up for Confederate history, whereas all the Democrats currently in office (Mayor Stoney, Governor Northam, Rep. Betty McCollum) want them all removed. Would voting for Biden actually keep the statues around or would it just bring a wholesale rubber stamp of their removal?
Debra, I answered your post but my phone froze and I couldn’t send so this is do-over.
It is my fervent hope that the monuments on the battlefields are left
alone. I’m a Democrat and most certainly see Trump as a clear and present danger. No leadership or accountability. I don’t think our country will survive period if he stays in office 4 more years.
So, yes, Biden. I know Trump has said leave monuments alone and that is
only thing I’ve agreed with him on. He has stirred up racism in this country, IS treasonous (why doesn’t nygiant write about us as opposed to painting the South, including us as treasonous and traitors simply because we don’t like statues jerked down, vandalism, etc?
He might agree on that account but whatever.
The law is war monuments on battlefields are to be
left alone. I’ve written to Biden and will write to others.
I understand the police issue must be dealt with and it will be.
Seems there was conflation with covid lockdown, Floyd murdered on national TV (heinous) and suddenly tons of people in the streets taking out frustration of lockdown plus all watched the murder televised. I think people took to streets for variety of reasons.
The monuments on Monument Avenue are down except for Lee (and Arthur Ashe, I think).
This has been issue in Richmond since 2017 with plans to move to museum
Maybe Lee will stand. Don’t know.
I hope the monuments down in public places will help satisfy the BLM people but not sure how it
will. I’m dubious about that. My parents/family involved in Civil Rights movement in 60s and much was accomplished. Seems kind of forgotten now although some remembrance with Lewis’s death.
At this point seems blacks need to sort their own issues out (other than police issues and criminal
justice issues). Other than that I don’t think white paternalism is helpful to blacks
or whites. I will be writing about that to to representatives, etc.
After working in psychiatry for years, seriously, this country will not
survive more Trump. The issues will be far bigger than our concerns
about battlefield monuments. We need leadership and Biden and his VP can provide that.
Debra….No…they honored those who fought against the United States, and were traitors . The monuments were to the Lost Cause. Recall that these monuments were erected during the time of JimCrow laws and separate but equal…which never existed.
Johnson did pardon some Confederates…not all. And he did it to get back at Congress for his Impeachment.
Pardon means to forgive….it doesn’t wipe away the crime, nor the act.
nygiant, you seem to sit in judgement now in a way that Grant never did (nor would he approve) which seems really ironic. For the Northern commander to be protective of Southern commander(s) is significant.
Anything nygiant doesn’t understand, he either lumps into ‘Lost Cause’ or ‘Jim Crow’ because he feels that Southerners have no other motivation than to intimidate blacks. These ‘traitors’ he keeps speaking about were fathers, husbands, uncles, brothers, and sons. EVERYONE lost in the South after the war, physically and economically – this is a fact, and not a myth. People wanted to remember their loved ones, even if their bodies didn’t return home.
In downtown Fredericksburg, there is a monument on public property for Fallen Heroes with the names of local men who fought from WWI to the present day. Because the US Army was still segregated til after WWII, is this a Jim Crow monument erected to intimidate blacks? Or are people just remembering those that served?
It’s amazing that still to this day, the specter of Jim Crow and White Supremacy still rises its head, seeking approval.
If they wanted to remember them….the best place is a cemetery. Might I remind you that the 1st Confederate Memorial ever erected, is in the cemetery in Romney, WV, at the Indian Mound Cemetery.
I remind you that Democratic President, Harry Truman de-segregated the Armed Forces in 1948….so that monument in Fredericksburg is NOT a Jim Crow monument. And I have to remind you that Black Americans did serve valiantly in WW 2. From my research that monument was dedicated in 2008.
What is ‘white supremacist’ about honoring war dead? And don’t give me that crap of putting everything in a cemetery, these hate groups are vandalizing cemeteries, too, because people like you are labeling all Confederates ‘traitors’ and ‘racists’ and ‘white supremacists’ without knowing any one of them individually or their true motivations for doing anything in their lives.
In a way, you’re just like that dad at the baseball game, except you would have said to the southern kid “if you were in the North you would be hung for being a traitor.” You have just as much hate for the South as you think the South has for blacks. But the truth is, most Southerners don’t hate blacks at all – THAT is your Jim Crow myth.
A cemetery is inappropriate place for a memorial, dear.
If you read a book on Reconstruction and its aftermath, you’ll learn that Jim Crow was reality in the South.
So, not even cemeteries are appropriate anymore?? Yes, I know Jim Crow was a reality, but the myth you keep perpetuating was that EVERYONE in the South was a racist and white supremacist and their only motivation for even getting out of bed in the morning was to oppress and intimidate black people. You seem to think that Southerners have no other motivation in life.
Listening to President Obama give a eulogy for a true American Hero, John Lewis, I was reminded of Bull Connor, reminded of the murder of the some Freedom Riders, reminded of the segregationist George Wallace….someone had to elect them…someone was responsible for the murders.
And I was reminded that the 1965 Voting Rights Act was changed by the Supreme Court, so that the states in the Olde Confederacy, no longer had to submit any voting rights changes to the Federal Government..allowing those states to target Blacks and minorities.
The monuments in cemeteries need protection. They are at risk so please
understand that. Maybe place concerns there unless you want only Union monuments on
Civil War battlefields
Debra–all, well said by you to nygiant. What else is there to say?
Oh, I finally get it now! Y’all are doing us a huge favor! Since those monuments went up during Jim Crow, they’re racist and white supremacist. But, if you tear them down, and we re-erect them or put up new ones, then those aren’t racist or white supremacist because they weren’t put up during Jim Crow. Right??
Debra dear, the 1st monument was erected in 1867….https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confederate_Memorial_(Romney,_West_Virginia)
I thought you said there were no monuments to traitors in the North. I thought you said secession was always illegal. Here is a monument to Confederate soldiers in a northern state. And that state somehow seceded from the rest of Virginia to become its own state in 1863, even though you said from the Constitution that secession was always illegal. Even back, the government and politicians were only paying attention to certain laws or parts of laws when it suited their needs.
Debra–I agree with you. Nygiant who certainly seems nice enough is intent on blaming
the South and throwing around treason and traitors. I’m tired
I think the WW1 monuments and WWII will be left
alone. I think Civil War ones on battlefields will be left in
I just wrote to you in response to another post of yours and
my phone froze up. I will write again!
I think I’m nice enough too!
nygiant: if you spent some significant time in the South, you’d become much
nicer. Happens to all Northerners
I sort of like the level I’m at…. 🙂
nyg–the level you’re at? No idea what that means.
Just saying–to speak so about a region of the country and
never even been there…. noooo.
Reminds me of trip to Istanbul and Cappadocia,
Turkey in 2011 (I know different now) but was told all kinds
of BS about Turkey. I wasn’t afraid at all. Was best trip
of my life (no tour guided trip). Never met such gracious people–mostly
secular, the sheer size of Istanbul was amazing and modernity right beside
antiquity. They take culture very seriously and protect art, buildings, memorials from various periods
of occupation, etc. I know the Hagia Sophia is being turned back to
mosque as opposed to museum only but Christian mosaics in
gold protected. Anyway was incredible eye-opening experience in Turkey.
I found interesting online site about Colored Confederates in Civil War (presentation by black man
connected with archives in Raleigh. After I finish watching will send to you
SL…Being content is a virtue.
Then how were traitors allowed to vote and hold office and become citizens again? Did Benedict Arnold have his voting rights restored, or hold office in the new US government, or rejoin the US Army saying “whoops, my bad”?
Debra….easy answer…President Andrew Johnson gave them a general pardon ( with a few exceptions) just before he left office.
Right!! They were pardoned. They’re citizenship rights were restored. If they were still traitors, as you keep bringing up, they would NOT be able to vote, or hold office, etc. Traitor and citizen are mutually exclusive, can’t be both at the same time.
Debra dear, please refer to the definition of a pardon…the action of forgiving or being forgiven for an error or offense.
The offense is not erased…it still stands.
Are traitors allowed to vote?
Only if pardoned, dear.
But the fact that they were traitors, still stands. Just the punishment is waived.
nygiant1952 said: “No Northern cities erected a monument to those who were traitors though,.and none to White Supremacy.”
I know this predates the Civil War, but I thought the protests against monuments to Washington, Jefferson and others were because they were slave-holders and white supremacists.
Also, on the topic of cemeteries and monuments, should Grant’s Tomb be removed because in December of 1862 he issued an order expelling on only 24 hours notice all Jewish people from his military district which encompassed parts of Tennessee, Mississippi, and Kentucky? At the same time, the Confederate States’ Secretary of State (Judah Benjamin, who was formerly the CSA Attorney General and Secretary of War), was Jewish.
I don’t have my own definition of treason, and unlike you, any outrage of mine is not ordered by any political party as is the case with those committing open warfare and hence TREASON in our streets now.
S.L. A study can be made of the evolution in philosophy of the GOP and the Democratic Party
A study can also be made in decent people being empathic to inequality visited
upon any person because of race, sex (we’ve hardly gone there- it lies way
under racism), etc.
Esp decent white people in the 60s who
were part of Civil Rights movement which DID produce
many empowering responses for blacks.
Just seems right now that is forgotten. At least Lewis is
remembered as he’s carried across bridge in Selma.
Maybe that triggered some memories–but not of the under 40
age group unless they’ve had good U.S. History teachers.
Those like my parents and other whites who walked side by side with blacks in the 60s in marches, worked side by side on councils to deal wisely together to quell tensions, and children
brought up to be decent caring citizens don’t need to be
considered racists/white supremacists now just
because we’re Southerners. It’s absurd.
The vandalism and tearing down of statues (many
slotted for removal anyway has seemed ridiculous
and in the middle of a pandemic? The murder of Floyd
on national TV as heinous. Police depts/unions need
to deal with their problem and now.
Redoing the Civil War and slavery isn’t helpful. Civil
War is long over–the Union won, slaves were emancipated,
black men (with certain qualifications) could vote and
65 years prior to any woman (regardless of race, education,
I hope the monuments to both sides of Civil War
stay on the battlefields. Especially at Gettsyburg
S.I…..why did Black men have qualifications to vote? They were citizens, and entitled to vote.
Were White men allowed to vote….with certain qualifications?
Why were NO women allowed to vote until 1920 is
the better question. And after many women (Alice Paul, Lucy Burns, etc) were illegally arrested,
taken to Occuquan jail, beaten, force fed, etc?
S.L….You brought up qualifications for Black men, allowed to vote.
Thought initially they had to own some land but not finding that right now.
Just finding Lincoln wanted black men to vote (or not truly emancipated)
so black men could vote in 1865. No black women could vote. No women
could vote period until 65 years later. Pathetic.
In SC in pres election my mother worked at polls, making sure blacks
weren’t turned away and they were. She would confront situation and
they were allowed to vote. Others did same. Not just my mom. And no
pressure who to vote for. Was admirable if her (to me) as an 8 year
old to know she was doing that.
My dad told us to prepare for cross to be burned on our lawn…
I recall playing organized baseball, and an Afro-American team-mate made an error playing 2nd base. A Dad of one fo the kids on our team, yelled across the Diamond…”you know in the South, they would Lynch you for doing that”
That was my last game with that team…I quit.
That’s terrible. Growing up in South I truly didn’t hear things
said like that–not out in front of kids like that ever. Never heard adults
talk like that–whether in NC, SC or VA. In high school
blacks and whites got along fine as far as I could
tell. Obviously past the 60s. And then involved my
parents and other adults working together toward
Married a Northern guy. From PA. We walked the battleground at Gettyburg
together one time. He said he always had certain superior attitude
toward South as many of his friends, etc, did. Then when lived
in South said not like he’d stereotyped it. He’d never
live north of Richmond again. Interesting.
Impressive you quit the team after you heard that.
Did any other adults call that one father out?
Too bad you didn’t get to play that year, though.
Someone needed to call that dad out. Other than you by your
As a Southerner, I never liked the Confederate flag. Felt zero connection to it. Nor did any of my
friends or family.
Funny that I recall so much about that day. No one said anything to that Dad…none of the coaches, no other parents, and no parents from the opposing team. However, I was offered a ride with another team-mate….and his parents commented about what he had said.
It was the first time I had confronted racism…and I was a bit stunned. I mean…..who degrades a fellow on the same team as your son????
I don’t think anything was ever said to this Dad….I quit the team, and really had very little to do with them. I doubt anything was said to this Dad ,as he and the coaches were pretty prominent in youth baseball in my home town. And they all hung out together, if you catch my drift.
For me, it was a sad day, as I lost my youthful innocence.
How old were you that day? Have you always lived in North?
Also I want to put a link on here but doesn’t seem to be
I was unaware of this but there were blacks who
owned slaves as well as whites. Rather interesting bit
of hidden history
Those Blacks who owned slaves, never fought to uphold slavery, did they.
I think I was 14 years old…I think. The only things that interested me , at that time, were Baseball and a girl I really wanted to date….well…at least I have Baseball.
No…my academic career took me to the Mid-West, and the East. I did have a chance to study in Washington DC and Baltimore, but decided to go to Boston.
How about your career?
Read article above I posted from Washington Post: . Yes, slaves and I guess free blacks fought
for Confederacy. It is far more nuanced than we view today. Yes, all
who fought were fighting for their way of life, really
for their home, their state. They weren’t “traitors”–not as we term it anyway.
Secession was not clear in Constitution in 1860. Really
was not. Or it could be argued variety of ways. In that case, not
clear. Convenient of the North to abolish slavery earlier after African
slaves had built NYC, etc, etc, etc. Then Northerners had
lucrative business going selling slaves to South and
buying cheap cotton from South for their mills.
Good resource book, well-researched–Complicity:
How the North Promoted, Prolonged, and Profited from
SL…Slaves did serve as teamsters, and cooks, and did build the field fortifications, allowing the rebels to fight.
However, Black men were not legally allowed to serve as combat soldiers in the Confederate Army–they were cooks, teamsters, and manual laborers. There were no black Confederate combat units in service during the war and no documentation whatsoever exists for any black man being paid or pensioned as a Confederate soldier, although some did receive pensions for their work as laborers.
I beg to differ. There were also blacks as Confederate scouts and also medics.
That is service to the Confederacy. Not going to argue over it.
Will add, I have friends who were drafted in Vietnam War who didn’t see combat. They
were trained as medics and posted in Germany where the injured were brought.
They were placed in Intel, etc. Are definitely Vietnam
vets even if never carried a gun in that war (except in
If blacks were doing what you describe above they were
for sure part of the Confederate War effort.
By the way–want to add this bit of bizarreness re:
over-sensitivity (or whatever heck it is) of Northeners to
blacks in South in modern times. An example: I had
very high risk pregnancy with my son years ago. Confined
to bed for 5 months in strict way. Even then 6 weeks premature.
I had to have assistance as I couldn’t get up at all and
my husband had to go to work. I was in Florida then. My mom came down
from NC and helped for 2 weeks, hired a god-send of a
woman from Upjohn health services. An black RN who had
worked for years in a NICU. Most qualified for
job. Wonderful. Professional. Talked like typical Southern black. I
promise you if now a scene of that time was taken there would
be calls that it was racist depiction–that black assistance in white homes
is racist and blacks don’t talk that way. Umm–that would
be incorrect. She called my son–once he got here–her “white baby”.
Also if in this “movie scene” my own Southern accent would for
sure belie I had little education (even though my
grammar is great) and I have undergrad degree from
Duke and grad degree from Tulane.
When black RN healthcare worker was hired (paid well through
agency) my Northern husband was not comfortable. This was in 80s!
To him it smacked of racism (what?), reminded him
of slavery in the South. I just stared at him and
said–get over your own prejudice–she was 100% best
person for job that she applied for. My gosh…
The Confederate Congress, after 18 months, approved the raising of official black regiments in the Confederate Army. They fought at Saylor’s Creek. 39 slaves and free blacks surrendered with Lee at Appomattox. All through the war, there are many accounts by Yankees that saw blacks in the CS army. Musicians, armed body servants, etc. And there are service records.
BTW, to your other story: I was raised by black women. My parents were business owners and worked full time. Our family always had a close association with black families, we loved them — thought of them as family. Even during Civil Rights marches, there was no animosity.
Yankees just don’t get it. Millenials just don’t get it. They prefer to think we hated each other.
Southerners understand this long relationship and how we have helped each other in our communities. It is truly sad that it is being vilified.
I am sure I will be a lightning rod for screams because of this post.
On March 13, 1865, with the main Rebel armies facing long odds against must larger Union armies, the Confederacy, in a desperate measure, reluctantly approves the use of black troops…NOT in 1861, 1862, 1863 nor 1964. And a month later the Rebels surrendered.
As far as Black soldiers fighting for the Confederacy…12-14 Blacks were captured, in gray uniforms, building field fortifications.
Just say that yes blacks were not in calvary units in Confederacy. They were
as you say involved in many pro-Confederate essential operations that soldiers would have
otherwise done. What their motivations were–we really can’t know from collective
viewpoint. Black slaves after all were not some monolithic group with all exact
same motivations. For either Northerners or Southerners to see black slaves
in some monolithic psychological/sociological way
seems overly simplistic to me.
Did you deliver babies in a war/conflict?
No…just here in the good Old USA
Emergency or personal situation or in medical training
Okay! You go, guy!
Thanks for your post! Yes, agree.
So glad to hear your story. Wow, right on target.
Yes, there is desire to see Southern white and blacks as against one
another. I don’t think Northeners tend to get it unless they have
lived in South. Even my husband didn’t get it at first as I
described. Was very odd to me. He gets it now.
The black nurse who we hired during my high risk pregnancy even went in
L and D with me. She had previously worked on staff in that hospital and
my ob said fine for her to scrub and me in delivery room.
My son(son of Northern father and Southern mother) realizes how much he owes her.
We’ve made trips from VA to FLA to see her. She considers us family and
vice versa. It’s sad when I think of Southern blacks and whites
who linked arms in peaceful marches during the Civil Rights movement in 60s.
Now I find myself as a Southern woman with Southern accent as
suddenly figured in as racist, etc.
All this surely is conflation of coronavirus, lockdowns,
people in lockdown seeing Floyd’s murder on TV (heinous) and taking to
streets in midst of pandemic. Obviously police problem must
be resolved but I fail to see how a redo of Civil War and slavery issues
will resolve that issue.
Please comment on your thoughts over uproar regarding Gone
with the Wind. In another blog many millennials
were saying it was offensive to show blacks talking with
accents like that (huh???). Do they think Southern blacks or
whites for that matter have ever had or even have now accents
like Denzel Washington??
Even my PA husband NOW sounds somewhat Souther.
His family and friends are aghast! Pretty hilarious.
I cannot believe they are after Gone with the Wind, and all other films, books, etc. that portray that time. Sounds like Soviet Russia and banning Dr. Zhivago, Solzenitsyn books, and Romanov history. They were pretty pissed to find out their history had been suppressed when the Wall came down and they “discovered’ it all again. I think we will be the same way eventually. Ditto on the husband: mine was from DC. He went completely Native after we moved back to Georgia in 1991. He completely understands the relationships now, and always was interested in history. We met as reenactors in the 1970s.
Great post! Yes, there is a feeling of censorship that isn’t a good thing.
Interesting to hear about how you and your husband met! And that he
“gets” the South now. Same here–my husband even
eats grits, no fried okra though! I thought his Northern
accent would neutralize my Southern one but has
worked the other way.
I think Gone with the Wind is probably true to the times. Can
people not contextualize? Actually I don’t see Gone with the Wind
as romanticizing the South. Looked sad and horrific to me
in that movie.
So will Mark Twain, Joseph Conrad, etc be banned for high
My book on Cleburne is “A Meteor Shining Brightly”. Also I have other books on soldiers and letters between them and family. They are all on Amazon. Thanks for asking.
Great Time article! This is crazy! I am well educated. From top schools. How
did I not know this? Why is it not taught??
Have you read book: Complicity: How the North Promoted,
Prolonged and Profited from Slavery–great resource
Do you teach History? My guess is, perhaps.
Would you post that Time article on Jim Crow on
this thread please? Too good to not share with
Btw, I don’t live far from Monument Ave in Richmond. HUGE strange
holographic imaging show of George Floyd superimposed
on Lee monument. Strange as it gets.
FOR SURE we need police reform. Asap. We don’t
need old white male order that is coming from top down
leadership in our country either. I wish for some
moderation! And in midst of pandemic that’s been handled poorly and
dangerously (sorry for the mini-rant!)
Please post Time article. Definitely checking out
your books on Amazon!
You guessed it, S.L. I taught college history for 10 years, but as long as I can remember (since I learned to read?) I have read about “The War”. I was a child during the Centennial and I was fascinated for 4 years, following every TV show, every book I could get my hands on, and every film that came out. It was a time to bring the 1860s to the forefront and I reveled in it. At age 7 I was asking my grandmother about her memories of Confederate soldiers in the family. My father had stories he got directly from his great-uncles who served with Stonewall Jackson. I am still fascinated by it all, along with European history as well.
Here is the link to the Time article. I hope everyone will read it.
Yes, you know too much about history not to
teach it! I ordered your book. Also the Time magazine article you
posted is different from the one you told me about.
Maybe you posted different link? The Forgotten Northern Origins of
Jim Crow in Time magazine (Feb. 2019) was one you told me about.
I will try to post it. If you don’t see that I do, please post that one. Interesting to
hear about how you’ve traced your ancestry back. I am working on
that as well.
Re: history and wars. My brother worked in Paris for 5 years in the
mid-90s. I was there every June plus also traveling around the
country. The last trip there was in 2004. My husband, 18 year old
son and friend went. That time we visited Normandy area. Stayed a night at
Mont St. Michel. Then headed to American Cemetery there. One the way
we saw directions to a German WW2 mausoleum and we stopped. Very somber place with
many German dead buried there (in the niches). The boys searched for
surnames in their families and sure enough found them.
We headed on to
American Cemetery yet stopped at a German one with dark chiseled stone crosses. Soldiers
were buried 5 deep in utilitarian way. La Combe Cemetery, I think. France also have Germany this land and Germany maintains it.
Even though Germany had occupied France during WW2, had rounded up
Jews and others, taken them to the death camps—even though this, France gave
Germany land to honor, remember and bury many of their dead. We all know the stakes, horrors and sacrifices of WW2, yet here, France gave Germany land for these cemeteries. The graves are honored and no vandalism or defacement. The boys looked for their surnames
at the 2nd German Cemetery and found those surnames (just their surnames
in general). At the 2nd cemetery, most of the German dead were 18 and 19 year old boys. There
was a center that held items, letters under glass–the boys wrote in their letters about wanting to be wanting to be home. Were fighting as ordered to do. All very somber and also
amazing tribute. Then to American/Allies Cemetery with its white crosses.
Boys found markers with surnames there as well.
The experience was far far richer
to have experienced both German cemeteries with buried dead and memorials (even within France!) as well as American/Allies one. We had not expected both and it was s memorable
experience for us all. Yes, both sides and the invaders given land on
the one’s invaded soil.
Yes, I have visited those cemeteries in France as well. Both WWI and WWII cemeteries. It is called forgiveness and that is what true Christians practice. These people in America who claim to be Christians — and even preachers in some cases! — only spew hate and refuse to forgive. Jesus said you must forgive to get into the Kingdom of Heaven, so some of these “preachers” are due for a rude awakening. Here is the link, not sure why the other one came up.
We went to Mont-de-Huines (11, 956 German dead) and LaCambe (19,863 German dead)
all occupiers of sovereign France in WW2. And France allowed and
allows these memorials to the German dead to be on French soil with no
vandalizing, no outrage. You are correct, it is forgiveness in a way
that was almost heartbreaking. At the German Cemeteries there was a sense of profound sadness,
of great dignity. It was moving to all 4 of us.
Then the American/Allies Cemetery had a “presentation” feeling–a sense of glorying in victory.
Put it this way–the 2 eighteen year old boys had a somber day of it and realistic one. So glad we
went to both cemeteries.
You are correct though, to give the “enemy” “the occupier” a place for their
war dead in a country they occupied and committed atrocities in, yes, that
took/takes forgiveness and full understanding of the cost of war–of lives lost on
Interesting too during these past months, France has said no monuments, markers, etc to be removed or torn down in France.
Here is what you referred me to.
Hope everyone will read!
How Did Jim Crow Segregation Laws Start? Not How You Think | Time
T”his is not to excuse the South, where violence became a tool of white supremacists after slavery’s end, where lynching went unchecked, and where civil rights protections created by Congress in the wake of the Civil War were denied to people of color. There’s no question that Jim Crow laws gained velocity in the South at the end of the 19th century, “…from your article.
Fact is….segregation was predominately eliminated in the North.
So, if white supremacy and racism only exist in the South, because of all the Confederate monuments and Jim Crow laws, how is it that George Floyd was killed by a Minneapolis police officer? Did this police officer have southern roots and secretly infiltrated the enlightened North just to perpetrate such a crime? Did he draw his racist and white supremacist power from the statues on Monument Avenue?
Or, can hate and racism exist anywhere and in anyone, regardless of the hater’s race, religion, or ideology? Simple fact, it is wrong to blame an entire region or class of people for all the hate and racism that is currently running rampant in this country; that is actually hate and racism, too. This is NOT a Southern problem, this is a National problem.
There have been hate, racism, and slavery in just about every culture in the world from the beginning of time to the present age – this is NOT all the fault of Confederates and Southerners – there were Black Confederates, Native American Confederates, Jewish Confederates, Irish Confederates, Hispanic Confederates, women Confederates, and even Asian Confederates. Oh, and don’t forget that those self-righteous Union soldiers and generals who won freedom for the slaves, went out West after the Civil War and slaughtered most of the Native American tribes or put them into reservations and broke land treaties with them – so are they really heroes or villains?
And just because you heard one dad say that kid would be lynched if was in the South, did not mean that every Southerner lynched every black child for making a mistake in a baseball game. Most Southerners did not and do not behave that way. You are making general assumptions about an entire class of people based on a few random facts – that, in itself, is racism.
Debra…a few points….
1. Realize that racism and white Supremacy continued in the United States after the Civil War, and that the subjugation of our Black citizens was condoned. Recall…separate but equal was allowed and condoned in the South by the Congress for another 100 years after the Civil War.
2 It is theSouth that perpetuates the Lost Cause and allowed White Supremacy through the acts os separate but equal. You don’t see any memorials to rebels in the North, and not adjacent to curt houses.
3. Just because it happens elsewhere, isn’t a reason for condoning racism in the United States.
4.The treatment of Native Americans by all those who came to the United States, is atrocious.
5. Lynching occurred in the South and was directed towards Black citizens. That is a FACT.
1. So the almighty, all-powerful, ever-so-enlightened United States who won the Civil War and freed the slaves, couldn’t figure out how to stop Southerners from being racist, so they just let it happen, but they should not be blamed at all for the part they played in all of this?
2. I never mentioned the Lost Cause in any of my posts, but you seem to be perpetuating the Jim Crow myth that every Southerner was a white supremacist during this ‘Jim Crow era’ and their only motivation for doing anything was to intimidate or oppress African Americans, from putting up monuments/memorials to their own war dead to creating Coke and starting banks and trying to rebuild their own devastated lives and communities after the war.
3. Because it happens everywhere means it is everyone’s problem to fix, and not something to just blame the South for.
4. Yes, it is,and our treatment of Japanese Americans in WWII was atrocious, as well, but like I said before, THIS IS A NATIONAL ISSUE. Are you going to blame the South for that, too?
5. Yes, it is a fact, but you blame the entire South and not the few a@@holes that actually did it. By your standards, you should all be blamed for that one dad’s comment. None of you confronted him about it or kicked his child off the team for it, and you left the team instead of trying to stay and fix the problem. So, your silence actually validated his statement and accepted it. Did anyone even talk to the black kid’s family about it? You’re all just as racist and white supremacist, but the same standards you’ve been using to blame the South for everything.
Read “Insults to Black History” by Walter E. Williams, black professor at
George Mason University. Google that and it will come up.
Debra, thanks for your common sense comments. I appreciate your post as a Southern white.
Of course the police problem is a National issue that needs to be resolved. There is a cult of
brotherhood in police departments in which they support one
another regardless. The unions make it difficult to get rid of bad cops.
This is a problem in our entire country that can be solved
without fighting the Civil War again. It has become ludicrous and
offensive to many Southerners who completely support equal rights
Nygiant, when you lay blame NOW on a whole swath of the country
when many of us or our parents fought long and hard during the Civil Rights movement of the 60s (which brought much success for blacks)–when you do that it is highly ignorant and
offensive. You come across as an uninformed Northerner who by your
own admission have never even visited or spent time
in the South. You’re missing a lot.
Blacks in this country have made tremendous strides that are almost
incalculable in past centuries. Slaves themselves and slaveholders
would hardly believe it if they could see it.
Try reading some of Dr. Walter E. Williams work. He’s a black
economics professor at George Mason University.
SL…a few points…
1. You can blame the Republican Party for using the Southern strategy, to thwart the Civil Rights of our Afro-American citizens. Why did they target the South to use a strategy that tried to protect the Jim Crow legislation that we Democrats abolished? Why not target the entire United States?
2. Williams has a skewed look at the facts. Why should only 13% of the population account for over 45% of police killings?
3.If you care to get in the gutter and trade insults calling me ignorant…I can do that too.
Nygiant–I don’t care to blame anyone and I’m disgusted with the entire South being blamed so please stop that. Enough already. You’re too smart for that.
Williams is well-respected btw, and does his research.
I’m a Democrat by the way. My interest at this point is
to move forward in this country. We’ve been set back by a racist/sexist president who thrives on division and those followers in power who could stop him but won’t.
He hails from NYC.
What you described at baseball–I was very supportive and empathic.
That occurred in the North. We had blacks and whites on teams. If anyone
had yelled something as the dad did to the kid, that man
would have been confronted by all fathers there, by the coach and
asked not to return. That bs was not put up with during the time
period you talk about.
Interesting for sure. Never a fan of Confederate flag.
Watch this though
Check out maurielj’s response to me at 3:50 today.
Stellar response! Imo.
I’m concerned (my opinion obviously) that some of
the race issues are going to distract this country
from very present danger of current president to our
As a clinical psychotherapist I am clearly aware
of the clear and present danger he poses to our Union
Most critical time in our Nation imo
“Check out maurielj’s response to me at 3:50 today.
Stellar response! Imo.”….I’d have to disagree…..The Rebel Congress passed the law in 1865, less than a month before the surrender.
And there were NO Black regiments.
Regardless—black presence in “essential positions” on Confederate side in Civil War that strongly contributed to Confederate side–“essential work”– term we’ve very much come to know in past 6 months.
ny.giant1952–Had interesting Zoom discussion with several of my Vietnam vet
Richmonder friends tonight. One served as medic in mash type
unit. Other was in Germany where severely injured were taken,
other in Intel and in States. All 3 were drafted at age 19. All 3 Southern
men. I asked their opinion re: blacks serving in Civil War for Confederacy. Response: Of course: cooks, those that dug trenches, carried gear, were medics, etc, etc–black slaves worked in those capacities. Of course they were in Civil War on Confederate side.
Guys I talked to tonight (all well-educated beyond BA degrees,
smart guys) said we didn’t see combat in Vietnam but
we were drafted and we served very essential roles. So yes,
black slaves certainly part of Confederate war effort in support of
fighting units, efforts.
SL, I have already commented that Black slaves did most of the work that soldiers usually performed, thus freeing up rebel soldiers to fight.
However, NO Black slaves ever fired a weapon in defense of the rebels.
And seriously….do you really think Black slaves had a choice in supporting the rebels? Recall, that slaves owners were pai for the work their slaves performed.
So…black slaves performed many essential duties in Confederate war effort. Yes, completely believable to me. Just as after emancipation some slaves stayed on with the families
they knew and worked in different capacity. As
I said black slaves were not this monolithic group where
all were the same. I found info that indicated some black slaves and free blacks
actually fought but you refuted that. Others have said
same to you. At any rate, there were varying degrees of loyalty or not
varying degrees for new adventure (even if essential duties in a war
to protect the only life they knew plus land they knew.
Same for white Confederate soldiers. Not a monolithic
group either. And now–no, all Southern whites today are
not remotely racists which seems far too easily tossed our way. It
is not nuanced view. And doesn’t reflect reality.
Police problems must be fixed in entire country. Has to be.
To me, that is separate thing from Civil War or slavery.
It has to do with brotherhood cult and much to do with unions
helping bad cops get off. That has to stop.
I listened to a speech given by Denzel Washington the other night. Was stellar.
Addressed what it takes to make a good decent life regardless
of color or sex. He grew up in the projects, etc.
Too much history is hidden. In school I didn’t learn the entire
system of slavery–from Europeans going to African shores and waiting
for African slave traders to sell their own people (which was evidently
often prisoners, captives from tribal conflicts, etc.) I wasn’t aware that black Africans
often had black slaves. (Did you learn that in school?) Or how active the North was in the slavery
trade? How much of the North was built on slave labor and household slaves were
common? I never heard the entire complicit story. Too much has been heaped on
the South. It is a stereotype that is not reality.
SL….a few things….
1. Yes…I learned that in school.
2. Patrick Cleburne also advocated forming Black slave regiments…also rebuffed.
3.Perhaps some Blacks had slaves…it certainly doesn’t absolve the peculiar institution.
I wrote a book on Patrick Cleburne, yes he was the one who wrote the essay laying out the plan that Congress eventually passed too late. 60 of his officers signed his submission supporting the idea in Jan. 1864. Also, Jim Crow was a Northern created law predating the Civil War. See Time article The Forgotten Northern Origins of Jim Crow from Feb. 12, 2019. The story is much more complex than the Presentism we are seeing distort everything.
Thanks for the information! Will check out! Am interested in your book–what
is the title?
Sadly it is not a peculiar institution at all. It is a common one worldwide and continues
to exist in harrowing ways via sex trafficking etc. Did you ever see Whistleblower with
Rachel Weisz, Vanessa Redgrave, etc. If not, try to see it. It has been around worldwide just about forever.
Re: tearing stuff down, renaming—should Wall Street be changed to Black Wall Street? Maybe?
The movie (based on true story) Hidden Figures was eye-opening and overlaps racism with sexism.
Slavery has existed since dawn of agriculture when people started settling down
and owning things. Esp men owning women and children. Check
out Biblical texts among others for plenty of that. Much in there about tribal fights
where God (the writers) directs the spoils of war to be taken–men (sometimes), women (esp if virgins virgins)
As a progressive minister’s daughter, I’ve had plenty of time
and study (academic and theological of Biblical texts.)
They were written by men over hundreds of years, with particular
agenda, horribly misogynistic. To point at age 19 I told my dad, no need
for me to attend church anymore as all is about male god, his
male characters, written from male point of view. That said, I would never want
that text destroyed. No way. It is too valuable in terms if literature especially in what
came before it and in comparative cultural studies.
Definitely, misogynistic and racist for most part with some parts (say wisdom literature)
that seems of value.
Yet we hear God (male) Bless America, In God
We Trust, etc. I’d change that if I could but not leading
movement on that.
As Mary Daly said, “When God is male, the male is God.” Yep.
U.S. Grant in his memoirs discussed the huge contribution of southern blacks to the Confederate war effort.
My understanding is that a good number of soldiers in Nathan Bedford Forrest’s cavalry were blacks. How that happened is another story, but they apparently they were Confederate soldiers.
Taylor, thanks for the information above! I appreciate it and will check out!
However, I’m not sure how to reconcile this with the well-documented allegation of a massacre by Forrest’s men of the black union soldiers at Fort Pillow. It is said that Forrest was well to the rear and did not know what was happening, that the Union garrison had signaled there was to be no quarter, and some Union troops continued to turn and fire at the Confederates even while running away (and continued to fire from a bluff overlooking the site). Perhaps the black Confederate soldiers were in the rear with Forrest. I don’t know. I have not looked into this very much.
Debra,…a few points…
1. It was a failure that Reconstruction was abandoned, along with the newly freed Afro-American. Too much was spent on reconciling with he rebels, instead of helping these newly freed slaves.
2. No one in the North perpetuates the myth of the Lost Cause. And Jim Crow was no myth….if it was a myth, then why did Blacks have to start their own colleges…..why did Rose Parks have to sit in the back of the bus….why did Jackie Robinson break the color barrier in baseball?……And if it was a myth….why did the Democratic Party abolish it with the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Act of 1965?
3. Slavery was abolished in the North, though.
4.The Japanese-Americans were interred for 3years….not for 250 years like the slaves. Freed black had to endure Jim Crow for almost 100 years. And the attack against Native Americans started with the discovery of the New World, in 1492 as the settlers brought diseases with them, which decimated Indian tribes. Recall that those same Japanese-Americans did fight in WW 2 and became the 442nd Infantry regiment…the most highly decorated US Army regiment in WW 2.
5. Actually, I have apologized to that team-mate. And I did act…leaving the team was an act of protest. Thing is…the coaches were too intimidated to act against this parent.
I blame the Southern Culture of Jim Crow for those lynchings…and for the murder of whites who registered Blacks to vote.
Blame the South all you want. As a Southerner who has
done my part for Civil Rights in the South, I don’t want your
blame. You can have it back.
The North and South were both complicit in slavery and both
profited from it. It is an American thing. It’s over now.
The North won.
I’m more concerned about the racist/sexist president
in the White House, sewing division and damaging our
country horribly. If you want to see racism/sexism in America,
you don’t have to look any further right now.
Maybe watch Dr. Williams video on youtube, Suffer No Fools.
Has some great points. I not on board with everything he
says but his viewpoint is worth hearing. Esp in this video.
SL…I am just as concerned as you are about the racist president, and just as concerned that voters in the South may be dis-enfranchised.
nygiant–yes, focus actually better placed at this point in time on present racist/sexist president
and followers in this country–and getting that danger out of office.
Voter problems can occur in any states so we can do what
we can re: accountability.
People have had to stand in ridiculous lines already
to vote in primaries and it’s been in various parts of our country.
A difficult and very trying time.
Removing parts of the Civil Rights Act, that demanded that the States of the Olde Confederacy seek approval by the Government before changing voting rules, certainly didn’t help matters.
Voting suppression/problems has occurred in many states outside the South. It’s
a concern in ALL of our states
Actually it was the Voting Rights Act of 1965…and once the Supreme Court gutted it, the states which made up the Olde Confederacy tried to restrict the votes of minorities.
NOTHING like that had occurred in the North.
Okay that’s great. What about NOW. The Nov election
this year which will determine (imo) if our democracy will
survive or if we will fall. What particular states concern you?
Wisconsin? Texas? Ohio? Michigan? Which ones disturb you the most?
For a fair election…the states of the Olde Confederacy still are trying to dis-enfranchise the minority.
So…if the current pres would stay in, it will be the fault of the South also?
And if that occurs then our democracy is over. It’s done. Almost is
anyway but can’t make it through 4 more years of what we’ve just been through.
If Lincoln could have seen into the future, to NOW, perhaps he would
have let the states secede without a horrible War and effects that would allow the SOUTH to singlehandedly destroy the American democracy. Sounds like
Plan B or Plan C would have been better. There were important leaders around him–in the
blessed North who were for secession. It was Lincoln’s dream that made
the choice not hard legalities set in the Constitution.
And somehow by gosh it the prior president was actually
a black man that even the South could not keep out of office
No…the fault would lie with the who did not exercise their right to vote…whether through not enough polling places, to removal from the rolls, to too few actual doing booths, to a mechanical breakdown of the voting machines, and to laziness.
Lincoln would have been impeached if he had not tried to force the South back into the Union…which he did feel was a perpetual Union.
nygiant–your answer is confusing. You say that the fault would lie with those
who did not vote. Why would it be their fault if voting shenanigans went on?
Personally, I’m concerned with very many states in upcoming election. Not focused on
Yes, Lincoln “felt”…it was his “belief”…
but “The Constitution does not directly mention
secession. The legality of secession was hotly
debated in the 19th century.”
SL…you didn’t read the entire explanation.
nygiant–yes, I read all
Debra…I’d hardly call WV…the North.
Let’s not change geography around, to make a political point now.
They fought for the Union. They purposely broke away from Virginia because they didn’t want to be Confederate. Now you’re not going to claim them as a Northern State? Just because it doesn’t suit your argument? Who’s changing the rules now huh?
Debra….lets not change the geography to fit your political agenda……WV is in the South.
nice try though!
I haven’t changed anything. I was only following the rules that you laid down.
Good..then you agree with my premises.
Sure. Secession is illegal and always was before the war, except when part of a state wants to secede and join the Union (aka the North), so that’s perfectly fine and legal. Also, said new state is considered part of the North, because it fought for the Union (just like Maryland, Kentucky, Delaware, New York, California, Ohio, Indiana, etc.), but because part of it falls below this imaginary line and because Confederate monuments can be found there, it fails to meet your criteria and gets thrown back to the racist, white supremacist South that it was trying to escape from all along. I think I get it perfectly.
As Virginia was a state in rebellion against the laws of the United States….the US Constitution doesn’t apply.
Of course. The Yankees always bend the rules to suit their needs, and then blame the South for all of society’s problems.
Debra dear…no..we blame the South for Jim Crow and separate but equal, and for being traitors.
Nygiant–I don’t get the blaming the South, when the North
was so involved in the slade trade. And if African slave traders
had not been willing to sell their own people then
the whole business would not have gotten underway.
When you understand the entire dynamics that went on re: slavery, truly get it, blaming the South alone becomes a non-option.
That’s about it for my thoughts on subject.
I just hope monuments to Union and Confederates will be left
The police issue all over the country has to
be dealt with. Blacks have to deal with their own internal and community
issues (policing excluded). In a way, similar to women figuring out how
they will deal with sexism that is pervasive. That said “blaming men” is
so out of line and a waste of energy anyway.
Debra–that’s a sad stance, isn’t it? Complete blame on
South. When the whole picture is seen, I don’t see how
a person comes to that point. Most Northerners I know who are
aware of the complicities and complexities of the time, don’t have
this blame for the South. My Northerner husband certainly
doesn’t. Maybe in part it takes living in the South whether attending
college, grad school or working here.
It has been a wild ride being in Richmond during this pandemic
and the protests with much vandalism. Now there is a horrible (to me)
holographic show of George Floyd’s head moving around superimposed on the Lee Monument
on Monument Avenue. Bizarre to me. Scary looking to kids.
I wanted to drive down and see it the other night and
my Northern husband said, not going there. We need to
stay away. True.
I hope taking down all these Confederate monuments will help today’s blacks find some peace but
somehow I am dubious about that.
I have no problem with monuments being removed from
a lot of public spaces and put in museums.
However the ones on both sides need to stay on
battlefields imo. Hope they do but who knows.
SL….once one knows that the South started the war, its easy to pin-point the blame.
What the South should have done….was to stay in the Union , and work with the Congress to find a solution.
Working with Congress was tried. If this blame the South alone troupe
is to continue, I’m not interested
Perhaps anything Confederate will be erased. Even on battlefields. Maybe
that will bring peace to many blacks and to Northerners looking to blame as opposed to
remember and resolve at this point in time
SL..Actually..it wasn’t tried.
Recall the dates of the South leaving the Union…the dates of secession…..The eleven states of the CSA, in order of their secession dates (listed in parentheses), were: South Carolina (December 20, 1860), Mississippi (January 9, 1861), Florida (January 10, 1861), Alabama (January 11, 1861), Georgia (January 19, 1861), Louisiana (January 26, 1861), Texas (February 1, 1861), Virginia (April 17, 1861), Arkansas (May 6, 1861), North Carolina (May 20, 1861), and Tennessee (June 8, 1861).
All those dates are AFTER Lincoln was elected, but before he took the oath of office. So, Lincoln never did have the chance to work a Congress that included the South to work out a compromise.
If any other candidate were elected…do you really think the South would have left the Union?
Think of it as a spoiled child who doesn’t get his way in a ball game, so he takes the ball and goes home.
Now…if you care to discuss this, I can debate the pros and cons.
If you aren’t interested, so be it!
Wow, that sounds oddly reminiscent of when Trump won and Hillary lost. Everyone crying and rioting in the streets, and trying for most of his presidency to get him impeached instead of doing any real work.
Debra dear….we call that a diversion.
Let’s focus on the Civil War, since this site is dedicated tot he Civil War.
Ummm, the thread here is about the removal of Confederate monuments. That is happening TODAY. Trump being elected no doubt has quite a bit to do with that. So the comment about the Democrats of TODAY having a hissy-fit TODAY IS relevant. And the comparison in Debra;s post is both relevant and accurate.
Sorry Doug…this thread is about the Civil War….not today’s politics.
I think the conflation of coronavirus, people inside (as was very wise but frustrating) and ALL seeing George Floyd murdered on TV was the clincher. It was a REASON to get out of the house asap!
This was not first time this has happened by any means and is a POLICE problem.
It is not solved by re-fighting the Civil War. It is solved by
addressing the Police issue which has gone on for far far too long.
Tearing down Confederate statues will not resolve police problem. What it has
done is given people an outlet for pent- frustration over Covid 19. The anger comes in large
part from that as opposed to Civil Rights imo.
I am FOR keeping the monuments. I live in Richmond. I cried when
I saw the vandalism of variety of people. I am definitely for keeping
both Confederate and Union monuments on battlefields such as Gettysburg.
Btw, I am as ANTI-Trump as one can get. If he isn’t out
of office in Nov we will have much much bigger problems than
loss of Confederate monuments. We’ll have loss of our very country.
I suggest everyone who wants to see this stopped to please contact your senators and let them know you oppose the removal of confederate memorials from the battlefield parks. If this passes and they are ultimately removed we will never get them back
When the demands are made that “Rebel monuments must come down” are not accompanied by funding for more MLK monuments as automatic replacements, then take a closer look at the syllogism of the arguement, and Stay Silent about what you discover.
I believe that this country has some more pressing and serious issues, than that of the removal of statues to traitors to the United States. More than 183,000 Americans have died from a virus, that the present administration tried to “wish” away.
Afro-Americans are still denied their rights, and due process.
Let’s fix those problems , first!
Blacks are not denied their rights and due process in the United States of America. That’s an absurd accusation.
Lyle….The police have continued to deny Afro-Americans due process …one in Minneapolis was denied due process, by being choked to death, when a cop placed his knee against the Afro-American’s neck for over 8 minutes. An AfroAmerican woman was murdered in her apartment…an Afro-American was murdered n Georgia while jogging…and an Afro-American was shot by a cop 7 times, and paralyzed.
At no time, did they have a chance to exert their rights under the US Constitution.
Douglas….Facts are, the virus developed in animals first and then was transmitted to humans…the same thing happened with the Ebola virus. And FYI….Under President Obama….11 people infected with Ebola, and 2 deaths in the US. Under trump….183,000 killed by the Covid-19 virus.
Is that the (ahem) ‘virus that your party’s beloved Chinese communists created and distributed? THAT one?