Wednesday, April 07, 2010


Virginia Is For US Haters

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell determined that he left out a certain word in his proclamation making April "Confederate History Month" in Virginia.  The word was "slavery." So, he's released a statement regretting the omission and updating the proclamation. This is a good idea.


Sorry, but I'm not on the Southern revisionism bandwagon. You can talk all you want about the bravery of Confederate soldiers and strategic genius of Robert E. Lee and other Confederate generals all you want. The one central fact of the Civil War isn't the issue of slavery or trade and tariff policy.  The one central fact is that the Confederate States launched the war on  the Union.  (In fact, McDonnell's proclamation conveniently occurs just a week before the April 12th anniversary of the attack on Fort Sumter.)  

The Confederates started the war -- and they lost the war.  They rebelled against the United States of America. After the end of  the "war between the states," America's existence as an irrevocable Union was settled. It was principally a political decision not to treat Confederate soldiers as treasonous agents and accept them back into the Union without penalty.

But the facts remain. A governor wants to commemorate an entity that took up arms against what is now known as the United States of America. This is a decision that shouldn't be offensive to black Americans.  It should be offensive to ALL Americans who commend and salute those who died for the cause of making this nation what it is today.  To commemorate the Confederacy is, by definition, to commemorate division. 

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