Tag Archives: Confederate Symbols

Silent Sam Confederate Statue

(August 21, 2018)  Yesterday a mob of 250 students illegally toppled a statue of a Confederate infantryman known as “Silent Sam” that stood for 105 years at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The state’s governor and a university chancellor only mildly criticized the action, which they coupled with sympathy for the opinions of those who participated.

[Learn about Civil War and Reconstruction at my Amazon Author Page]

Notwithstanding that government and educational leaders promote such cultural genocide by yielding to political correctness, most Americans want Confederate statues to remain. A year ago, for example, a survey commissioned by the Public Broadcasting System disclosed that 62% of the public wanted the statues to stay as historical symbols whereas only 27% wanted them removed. The remaining 11% were undecided.

Silent Sam

Likewise, a survey released earlier this year among readers of The Civil War Trust’s Hallowed Ground magazine showed a preference for keeping the statues. Only 17% of respondents wanted the monuments removed from public places “if that’s what the local community wants to do.” The other 83% felt that the statues should remain although 50% would support adding interpretive plaques “if needed,” while 33% felt the statues should stay without any changes. Only 22% of respondents were from former Confederate states whereas a combined 52% were evenly split between the Northeast and Midwest.

When I was reading Silent Sam’s story in the  Washington Post before eight o’clock  (EDT) this morning, about half the reader comments were opposed to the destruction and half favored it. After the slackers and trust babies had rolled out of bed around noon they dominated the comment’s section with remarks such as:

  1. Good Riddance!!!!
  2. What’s deplorable is that there are still people today who share the values of the men of these statues.
  3. The statues were erected . . . to intimidate black Americans as the racists established Jim Crow.
  4. Every single person who posts that this Statute should have remained . . . is nothing more than a bigot and racist!
  5. Racists used to hide behind “States Rights” now they are hiding behind “Remembering History.”
  6. Carolina—couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch of a-holes.
  7. Someone explain to me the Right’s obsession with memorializing losers.

Although Confederate statue critics often label them hate symbols, the above comments reveal that the hateful remarks come from the critics, not the memorial defenders. Moreover, their remarks shout a subtext: “If you don’t join us in demanding an end to Confederate monuments, you are not merely wrong, you are evil.” Few of the statue critics commenting in the Post made any original points. They merely repeated what they learned from the Pious Cause Mythology of the Civil War taught by the American History departments of many of our colleges and universities during the past thirty years.


California Racism & Confederate Statues

(June 9, 2018) Notwithstanding that California gave Hillary a larger percentage of its vote than any other state save Hawaii, the first six minutes of the video below show that racism may be more prevalent in the Golden State than is commonly believed. It is one of a series of videos produced by a group of Los Angeles male YouTube pranksters. They approach attractive young ladies in a public setting to strike up conversations. Their purpose is to invite the girls to lunch, or a cup of coffee. Failing in that they try for the phone numbers. Initially the guys are turned-down until the girls realize that the boys own Lamborghinis. Then the young ladies invariably want to go for a ride. But the boys bluntly tell them that they are no longer interested because the girls demonstrated that they are merely gold diggers.

[Learn more about Civil War and Reconstruction at My Amazon Author Page]

In the instance below a black youth tries to initiate a conversation with a beautiful white girl inside a convenience store. The girl soon flatly says, “I don’t really talk to black guys.” The shocked and hurt young man leaves the store to stand next to his Lamborghini in the store’s parking lot. When the girl walks by the car she has a change of heart and begs the guy to take her for a ride. She even suggests that he take her to his house. When he tells her that he changed his mind because of her earlier racist remark, she audaciously denied ever speaking it.

While the alt-left academic historians and their acolytes dedicate themselves to the mass removal of Confederate statues as their method of attacking contemporary racism, they piously ignore present racism outside the South. Presumably, California’s one-sided vote for Hillary partly reflected her disdain for Confederate symbols. When asked about the Rebel Flag then flying on the state capitol grounds in Columbia, South Carolina she said, “I don’t think it should fly there and I don’t think it should fly anywhere.”

The social justice warriors that want to erase Confederate heritage by removing Confederate statues and symbols should first focus on the planks in their own eyes instead of piously condemning Southerners as uniquely evil racists. But that’s about as likely as a Cherokee Indian getting elected Pope.

Why Many Southerners Still Honor Confederate Symbols

(May 5, 2018) “History with Hilbert” is a YouTube vlogger with 77,000 subscribers who does a good job in the twenty minute video below of explaining why Southerners still hold their own memory of the Civil War. While I disagree with some of his points, Hilbert demonstrates a lucid understanding of the Southern viewpoint to which monument-destroying politicians and public mobs are ignorant. Hilbert’s video has been viewed more that half a million times.

[Learn more about Civil War and Reconstruction at My Amazon Author Page]

Perhaps because he is a Dutchman, Hilbert “gets it” far better than the vast majority of America’s present academic historians and their acolytes who have too often been poisoned by the dominant anti-Southern teachings of the last thirty years. Hilbert’s comprehension is particularly impressive considering that nearly all of his other videos are about the history Europe and other parts of the World. But, again, it is probably his broader perspective that enables him to objectively comprehend America’s Civil War.

Two Opposite Views on Confederate Monuments

(August 4, 2017) The current issue of Civil War Times contains an article in which a number of authors state their opinions about the future of Confederate monuments. Provided below are two contrasting examples.

First is the summation provided by Megan Kate Nelson who writes the regular “Stereoscope” column for Civil War Monitor.

I [Megan Kate Kelly] would like to propose that Confederate memorials should neither be retained nor removed: They should be destroyed, and their broken pieces left in situ.

On a scheduled day, a city government or university administration would invite citizens to approach a Confederate memorial, take up a cudgel, and swing away. The ruination of the memorial would be a group effort, a way for an entire community to convert a symbol of racism and white supremacy into a symbol of resistance against oppression.

Historians could put up a plaque next to the fragments, explaining the memorial’s history, from its dedication day to the moment of its obliteration. A series of photographs or a YouTube video could record the process of destruction. These textual explanations may be unnecessary, however. Ruins tend to convey their messages eloquently in and of themselves. In this case, the ruins of Confederate memorials in cities across the nation would suggest that while white supre-macists have often made claims to power in American history, those who oppose them can, and will, fight back.

Second is Robert K. Krick who is  Civil War historian whose interest is concentrated in the Eastern Theater.

We live in an age riven by shrill and intemperate voices, from all perspectives and on most topics. No sane person today would embrace, endorse, or tolerate slavery.

A casual observer, readily able to convince himself that he would have behaved similarly in the 1860s, can vault to high moral ground with the greatest of ease. Doing that gratifies the powerful self-righteous strain that runs through all of us, for better or worse. In fact, it leaps far ahead of the Federal politicians (Lincoln among them) who said emphatically that slavery was not the issue, and millions of Northern soldiers who fought, bled, and died in windrows to save the Union—but were noisily offended by mid-war emancipation.

It is impossible to imagine a United States in the current atmosphere that does not include zealots eager to obliterate any culture not precisely their own, destroying monuments in the fashion of Soviets after a purge, and antiquities in the manner of ISIS…On the other hand, a generous proportion of the country now, and always, eschews extremism, and embraces tolerance of others’ cultures and inheritances and beliefs. Such folk will be society’s salvation.


My Amazon Author Page.

Lee’s Memory

In the wake of growing hostility toward the Confederacy a New Orleans Robert E. Lee statue is scheduled for destruction and debate is underway in Charlottesville, Virginia to remove another. Even though Washington & Lee is a private university, it has already yielded to pressures to remove the Confederate flag from the Lee Chapel. The school may ultimately feel compelled to drop the Lee name unless at least a few venerable historians publicly object to the escalating hatred toward Confederate symbols. To date none have done so, presumably for one of two reasons.

W&L Stamp

First, they believe the odium is justified. Given such an opinion there is no reason why they should object to degrading Lee’s memory and may even wish to promote it.

Second, those who think the disdain is excessive lack the will to speak out due to the prevailing opposite sentiment among their peers and the public. It takes courage for historians who have spent years earning favor  to express a contrary viewpoint since it may adversely affect their popularity, reputations and book sales. Nonetheless, Mississippian Shelby Foote set a good example of such pluck fifty years ago in the afterword of the second volume of his three-volume Civil War Narrative:

I am indebted also to the governors of my native state and the adjoining states of Arkansas and Alabama for helping to lessen my sectional bias by reproducing, in their actions during the several years that went into the writing of this volume, much that was least admirable in the position my forebears occupied when they stood up to Lincoln. I…fervently hope it is true that history never repeats itself, but I know in watching these three gentlemen, it can be terrifying in its approximations, even when the reproduction is in miniature.

Washington & Lee would not be the admired school it is today without Lee’s legacy. After he became president of Washington College in 1865 he attracted financial donations from all over the country. His reputation was a magnet that drew some to the best students in the South and increasingly from other parts of the country as well. The school’s present status owes more to his memory than to Washington’s, or anyone else’s. To remove his name would be to deny the credit he deserves. Nonetheless, it could become a consequence of the present trend toward Southern cultural genocide that is “terrifying in its approximations.”

My Civil War Books

Lee’s Lost Dispatch and Other Civil War Controversies
Trading With the Enemy
Co. Aytch: Illustrated and Annotated

To be released in May and available for pre-order: The Confederacy at Flood Tide