AuthorTopic: The Confederate flag symbolizes white supremacy — and it always has  (Read 11736 times)

Offline knarf

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http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/jun/23/nikki-haley-remove-confederate-flag-courageous-just-politics?CMP=ema_565
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Offline Eddie

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Re: The Confederate flag symbolizes white supremacy — and it always has
« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2015, 02:35:15 PM »
I just finished having an unsatisfying argument with my wife over this...let me see if I can re-group....

Okay, for starters, Jeb Lund is an ignorant asshole. Just like about ten other journalists I've read in the past couple of day who try to reduce the significance of the US Civil War to one sentence containing the word slavery.

What this article is...is Politically Correct. As is removing the Confederate Flag from any place it still exists, like eBay, which announced in true PC fashion that it would no longer sell anything displaying the Stars and Bars. Big fucking woop.

I already went on record as saying I thought the Rebel Colors should come down off the SC Statehouse, and that I thought people who go around waving it are morons.....BUT....those who are clamoring for its removal are dead wrong if they think it's going to do jack to eliminate the pervasive racism that exists in this country. Racism is rampant, on both side of the white/black divide, and it isn't about to do anything but get worse, as  far as I can see.

And most of the institutionalized attempts to legislate it out of existence are miserable failures.

And on the Civil War:

 It might have started out to be about slavery (which I agree was abhorrent) , but the real downside of the war was that it turned a loose conglomeration of semi-autonomous states into a country with the kind of repressive top-down centralized government we have now, which, in my book, is a crying shame.
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Offline knarf

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Re: The Confederate flag symbolizes white supremacy — and it always has
« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2015, 03:56:52 PM »


http://www.vox.com/2015/6/20/8818093/confederate-flag-south-carolina-charleston-shooting
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Offline knarf

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Re: The Confederate flag symbolizes white supremacy — and it always has
« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2015, 04:00:21 PM »


http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2015/06/what-this-cruel-war-was-over/396482/
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Offline knarf

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Re: The Confederate flag symbolizes white supremacy — and it always has
« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2015, 04:03:05 PM »
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2015/06/19/1394560/-So-The-Confederacy-Didn-t-Go-To-War-Over-Slavery#
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Offline Eddie

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Re: The Confederate flag symbolizes white supremacy — and it always has
« Reply #5 on: June 23, 2015, 05:14:27 PM »
The Civil War, for most people in it, was about getting blown up...for low wages. The Union paid 13 bucks a month, to whites. They paid blacks 7 dollars a month, for most of the war.

Confederates were supposed to get $11, but they mostly went unpaid.

The American Civil War still holds the record for the bloodiest war in American history. The aftermath was a shit sandwich the south was forced to eat....that lasted until 1877.



A lot of really good books have been written about that war....what caused it, what the war ultimately meant in the long term for the country.

I just object to bad articles written mostly by ignorant fools who know little history, but who are masters of emotionally charged yellow journalism. Piss on them.

They understand little about how much the war hurt this country permanently and irrevocably, nor do they care. Furthermore they do nothing to bring people together.
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Re: The Confederate flag symbolizes white supremacy — and it always has
« Reply #6 on: June 23, 2015, 06:05:55 PM »
I just object to bad articles written mostly by ignorant fools who know little history, but who are masters of emotionally charged yellow journalism. Piss on them.

They understand little about how much the war hurt this country permanently and irrevocably, nor do they care. Furthermore they do nothing to bring people together.

Tom Lewis is the Civil War KING.

He was Chairman of the Civil War Society.

Editor and Publisher 1988-1993 of  Civil War Magazine and Chairman of the Civil War Society.

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Offline Surly1

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Re: The Confederate flag symbolizes white supremacy — and it always has
« Reply #7 on: June 24, 2015, 02:05:25 AM »
Quote
It might have started out to be about slavery (which I agree was abhorrent) , but the real downside of the war was that it turned a loose conglomeration of semi-autonomous states into a country with the kind of repressive top-down centralized government we have now, which, in my book, is a crying shame.

It sure is Doc. A repressive monster that is totally out of control.  :'(

You might find Morris Berman's thoughts on this subject useful. He addresses it in depth in Why America Failed.

The Subjugation of the South by the North

From Why America Failed: The Roots of Imperial Decline

His analysis is one of the most honest and insightful analyses of the nature of that fratricide that I have found to date (and of the American myth that was reinforced in its wake).
"It is difficult to write a paradiso when all the superficial indications are that you ought to write an apocalypse." -Ezra Pound

Offline Surly1

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Re: The Confederate flag symbolizes white supremacy — and it always has
« Reply #8 on: June 24, 2015, 03:32:27 AM »
I just finished having an unsatisfying argument with my wife over this...let me see if I can re-group....

Okay, for starters, Jeb Lund is an ignorant asshole. Just like about ten other journalists I've read in the past couple of day who try to reduce the significance of the US Civil War to one sentence containing the word slavery.

Eddie, let me quibble with you a little over this.
First, Lund's is an opinion piece. It is largely about blowing away the illusion that Nikki Haley took an active political courage; it's more about the political opportunism that her actions and speech represents:

Quote
Those two implications to Haley’s speech would be offensive if it really were a message of healing for the black community of South Carolina, but it’s not. It’s a message of healing for the Running for President as a Republican community. Nikki Haley has announced that she wants the legislature to take down this flag, and now it will try to do that, meandering through politicking and procedure, giving the most needful of all Americans – especially those running for president as Republicans, and who once happily took the money of the racists who support flying said flag – the succor of not having to answer the question, “Would you take down the Confederate flag if you were the Governor of South Carolina?” with anything more than, “Well, I’m pleased to say I don’t have to answer that, and that issue is in the hands of the folks from South Carolina.”

 The first person to die defending the removal of the American flag and its replacement by a rebel one, Elmer Ellsworth, did so in an Alexandria, Virginia hotel in a stairwell.   By that time, Virginia had just ratified its articles of secession, and Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor had been bombarded. As you know, Ellsworth was the first of over 600,000 die in that war.

Also let's not forget that South Carolina is and has been the East Coast distributor for domestic terrorism since 1861.  They seceded, bombarded Fort Sumter, which was the casus belli that triggered the Civil War.


What this article is...is Politically Correct. As is removing the Confederate Flag from any place it still exists, like eBay, which announced in true PC fashion that it would no longer sell anything displaying the Stars and Bars. Big fucking woop.

I already went on record as saying I thought the Rebel Colors should come down off the SC Statehouse, and that I thought people who go around waving it are morons.....BUT....those who are clamoring for its removal are dead wrong if they think it's going to do jack to eliminate the pervasive racism that exists in this country. Racism is rampant, on both side of the white/black divide, and it isn't about to do anything but get worse, as  far as I can see.

I think there IS a "big fucking woop" to give.  Just like words, symbols matter.  And the Confederate battle flag, as displayed in the South Carolina Statehouse, in the back windows of broken down pickups and their bumper stickers across the South, and in certain redneck bars makes a statement that is unambiguous and clear. As far as I'm concerned, is the symbol of treason, and should've been outlawed over 100 years ago.

The truth is that the union won the Civil War, but lost the peace. And the South has been studiously remanufacturing the narrative about a romantic "lost cause" for decades. You know well tat Andrew Johnson,  Trying to remain faithful to Lincoln's policies, enacted some aspects of a "soft peace" for the Confederacy and was vigorously opposed by "radical Republicans" who wanted firmer and more punishing policies and more civil rights for blacks. That last piece would wait 100 years.  In fact, they impeached Johnson for his trouble.

Grant was elected in 1868 and his attempts to reconcile Southerners with the Union and to quash the rising Ku Klux Klan were undercut by postwar greed and corruption during his two terms, to say nothing of carpetbaggery and rank opportunism.  Ultimately, the federal government abandoned attempts to reconstruct the South in the Compromise of 1877 when federal troops were withdrawn from the South in exchange for the election of Rutherford B. Hayes to the Presidency. At the end of reconstruction, although they were free, southern Blacks had gained little or nothing.

 You could well make the case that  more punitive policies, including more treason trials for the secessionists,  banning of their symbols, and more affirmative help for blacks might have changed the story. But it's probably impossible from our remove to imagine the amount of war weariness in the souls of people then alive who had seen the carnage, smelled the blood, and lived the losses.  They probably asked, as we have, "can't we all just get along?"  And the answer was no.

Now about that flag:

The Stars and Bars was the national flag of the confederacy, and showed at various times seven to thirteen stars:


WT Thompson desighed the second flag, called "The Stainless banner:"


Quote
As a national emblem, it is significant of our higher cause, the cause of a superior race, and a higher civilization contending against ignorance, infidelity, and barbarism. Another merit in the new flag is, that it bears no resemblance to the now infamous banner of the Yankee vandals.
—William T. Thompson (May 4, 1863)

The final flag, adopted in March 1865 was supposedly called "The Blood Stained Emblem:


My point is that this flag:

is the Battle Flag of the Army of Northern Virginia,  but most consider that flag to be the Confederate flag and rally to it for a variety of reasons.

From wiki:

The battle flag was never adopted by the Confederate Congress, never flew over any state capitols during the Confederacy, and was never officially used by Confederate veterans' groups. The flag probably would have been relegated to Civil War museums if it had not been resurrected by the resurgent KKK and used by Southern Dixiecrats during the 1948 presidential election.[42]
Southern historian Gordon Rhea further wrote in 2011 that:
It is no accident that Confederate symbols have been the mainstay of white supremacist organizations, from the Ku Klux Klan to the skinheads. They did not appropriate the Confederate battle flag simply because it was pretty. They picked it because it was the flag of a nation dedicated to their ideals: 'that the negro is not equal to the white man'. The Confederate flag, we are told, represents heritage, not hate. But why should we celebrate a heritage grounded in hate, a heritage whose self-avowed reason for existence was the exploitation and debasement of a sizeable segment of its population?

And on the Civil War:

 It might have started out to be about slavery (which I agree was abhorrent) , but the real downside of the war was that it turned a loose conglomeration of semi-autonomous states into a country with the kind of repressive top-down centralized government we have now, which, in my book, is a crying shame.

Agreed about repressive top down government. Not to mention the primacy and enshrinement of corporations. My understanding  is that the origins of the Civil War were never about slavery, at least from Lincoln's point of view. His objective was to keep the union together, whatever the costs.  Many observers, with whom I agree, think that the Civil War was "baked into the cake" in our founding documents, and the various legislative compromises which ensued afterwards. It was inevitable that conflict would arise in a country divided by slavery.

As Samuel Johnson famously observed during the contest for independence by American colonists:

"How is it that we hear the loudest yelps for liberty among the drivers of negroes?"

Then as now, ironies abound.
"It is difficult to write a paradiso when all the superficial indications are that you ought to write an apocalypse." -Ezra Pound

Offline Golden Oxen

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Re: The Confederate flag symbolizes white supremacy — and it always has
« Reply #9 on: June 24, 2015, 03:55:00 AM »
I'm with Eddie on this one.

It's 2015 not 1860. Much ado about nothing.

Besides " Old Black Joe is Still Pickin Cotton " Everybody Knows.

Banishing pieces of history and burning books will not solve anything.


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Online RE

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Re: The Confederate flag symbolizes white supremacy — and it always has
« Reply #10 on: June 24, 2015, 04:46:55 AM »
As far as I'm concerned, is the symbol of treason, and should've been outlawed over 100 years ago.

So do your duty, boys, and join with pride
Serve your country in her suicide
Find the flags, so you can wave goodbye
But just before the end even treason might be worth a try
This country is too young to die


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Offline Eddie

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Re: The Confederate flag symbolizes white supremacy — and it always has
« Reply #11 on: June 24, 2015, 06:13:45 AM »
My point is that this flag is the Battle Flag of the Army of Northern Virginia,  but most consider that flag to be the Confederate flag and rally to it for a variety of reasons.

I actually was aware of that bit of trivia, although its been a long while since I read about it. I think "Stars and Bars", although not technically correct, has become part of the vernacular, and most southerners think of the battle flag of N. Va. when I use the term.

Like I said, I'm in favor of getting rid of the flag as any part of modern day representation of government. It certainly is a powerful symbol, and i do agree that, to many people at least, it represents white supremacy.

My problem with the press is that everything being written is very much about making sure everybody lines up behind the politically correct POV, and I also get chapped that this subject is being dragged into the limelight again now, as if the flag caused those poor people to be shot. It didn't, and the Big Hoopla is just more Bread and Circuses.

And thanks for the Berman link. I'm reading it now.
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Offline Eddie

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Re: The Confederate flag symbolizes white supremacy — and it always has
« Reply #12 on: June 24, 2015, 06:37:06 AM »
You could well make the case that  more punitive policies, including more treason trials for the secessionists,  banning of their symbols, and more affirmative help for blacks might have changed the story. But it's probably impossible from our remove to imagine the amount of war weariness in the souls of people then alive who had seen the carnage, smelled the blood, and lived the losses.  They probably asked, as we have, "can't we all just get along?"  And the answer was no.


The problem is that you can win on the battlefield, but if you don't win the hearts and minds of the defeated people, they just go back home and perpetuate the same attitudes and POV they had before...and they concentrate themselves geographically in areas where they think alike.

My own mother's family came to Texas from SC after the war, because there was nothing left for them there, from what I know of their story. So did many other ex-Confederates, and some of them regrouped in certain places to form tight little racist communities that are still racist today. It really hasn't been that long, for a long generation family like ours. My wife's grandfather was born in 1867. My own grandfather had a Civil War cannonball he used for a doorstop.
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Offline Eddie

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Re: The Confederate flag symbolizes white supremacy — and it always has
« Reply #13 on: June 24, 2015, 07:58:28 AM »

Sharecroppers in 1942 Lived Like Slaves in 1860

I liked the Berman piece, and agree with it pretty much completely. It clearly points out the nuances about the war that have been forgotten or ignored.

However, as Berman pointed out, echoing Horace Greeley, the war did more to turn southern whites into slaves than it did to elevate the former slaves themselves to any sort of decent life.

My own maternal grandfather was a sharecropper, and died one, in 1930. Here is a piece about his death I recently found posted on the site of the local cemetery where he's interred, by some unknown relative of mine. I never knew him or my grandmother either. The downside of that long generation thing.

From family tradition, Corbett made a crop at Noonday in the spring and summer of 1930. That fall Corbett worked at a sawmill and planer mill on the Big Eddy River while the three oldest children (Tillman, Walter, and Roy) picked cotton on the land at Noonday that Corbett worked as a sharecropper. The day Corbett died, the misting rain made it impossible to plane lumber at the sawmill. To pass the time, Corbett and some of the other men working at the sawmill went squirrel hunting. Corbett's dog treed a squirrel, which ran into his hole in the tree. In order to get the squirrel, the men cut down the tree. Corbett was standing near the tree when it hit a small sapling which fell on his head, killing him instantly.
 


http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=43182307



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Offline knarf

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Re: The Confederate flag symbolizes white supremacy — and it always has
« Reply #14 on: June 24, 2015, 09:27:09 AM »


http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/06/24/the-klan-s-vile-post-charleston-recruiting-spree.html?via=newsletter&source=DDMorning
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