Yes, the past is a mixed bag. But that’s usually how it is for any great nation. Great nations, capable of great good, are also capable of great wrong. That goes back to ancient Greece and Rome, for God’s sake. And you cannot judge the peoples of the past by modern standards. Try to impose a modern prism over the great figures of history, and you’ll get them wrong every time. Such people must be understood within the context of their times.
The Chinese and their Leftist water-carriers have the past, good and bad, of America and the West in their sights. Somehow, said statues and other symbols were what they were, where they were, for long generations. But suddenly in 2016, when the common working man elected his ironic champion, a billionaire named Donald Trump, these symbols, quite abruptly, were declared verboten, and they had to go. Co-incidence? Of course not. Attacking its past is a fine way to undermine a civilisation. Go dig up George Orwell or l’il Joey Stalin, and see what they have to say about that. Control the past, as Uncle Joe knew, and you’ll control a people’s present and future.
The Chinese and the liberals mean to attack our past. All of it. Our presidents (illegitimate as they are), our kings (wonderful as they were), our explorers, our artists, etc. After the whiny, whinging complaints of looney-libby agitators last week, a California college chucked its Western civilisation course, which had been in place for nearly 80 years, as it too heavily focused on the myriad accomplishments of the Greco-Roman world and was thus decried as “racist” by said pig-ignorant, brainless brats.
And of course one big subject forms a handy, barn door-broad target for these villains: the War Between the States. No, only an idiot calls it the “Civil War.” That’s too unclear. Which civil war? The English? The Spanish? No, serious scholars have always called it what it was––the War Between the States.
In a civil war, there is a contest between duelling factions for control of the government and its capital. But the War of Northern Aggression was not that. It was indeed the War for Southern Independence. Richmond was the capital of our nation, Dixieland.
Of all the wars in the history of human conflict, the War Between the States is perhaps the most nettlesome when it comes to explaining its many causes. It’s a complex war, and it defies easy understanding. But Lefties––being essentially overgrown brats, who desperately need to go back to elementary school––lack the necessary mental heft to hoik such intellectual weights. They want to reduce the war to easy sound-bites, to the single cause of slavery, hence their convenient excuse for destroying all Confederate monuments and every last vestige of Southern history and heritage.
No, it doesn’t help that racist rednecks shamefully hijacked the Southern Cross––the Battle Flag of the Army of Northern Virginia––circa 1960, a century after the Confederacy’s birth, misappropriating it in a misguided struggle against federal efforts to end American apartheid. But bad men quite often hijack good symbols and misuse and besmirch them. Decades ago, the evil KKK hijacked the American flag, the Bible and even the Cross of Christ. Should they be banned, too?
Imagine Merkel’s awful government in Berlin telling Bavaria that it could no longer use its distinctive, blue-and-white checked flag, images of King Ludwig II and other such symbols of regional pride. You can’t imagine that, can you? It’s about like that.
Again, the mixed bag: Yes, slavery is cited in the infamous South Carolina Articles of Secession, written by Christopher Memminger in 1860. But the baker’s dozen or so Confederate states often pulled in as many different directions, and that lack of centralised cohesion, which Lincoln enjoyed and Davis lacked, helped speed the South’s downfall. Many Southerners supported slavery. But many others opposed it.
Yes, the notorious Nathan Bedford Forrest was a slaver. Hey, if you wanted to remove a statue of him, I’d help you do it. With friends like that, we don’t need enemies; a personally brave man, Forrest, but possessed of other reprehensible qualities. Yes, the defeated South, in the wake of the war, rather like the defeated Germany of a century ago, ended up going nuts and unfairly blaming the lowest man on the totem pole for all of its problems, culminating in a century of apartheid. All very tragic.
Blame the damned Yankees
But who and what could’ve stopped the Jim Crow era and all its atrocities? The North. The men of the North, occupying the postwar prostrate South, could’ve put a stop to such things. But they didn’t do so, because they didn’t care, and they turned a blind eye. Reconstruction ended too soon, and the North pulled out prematurely. The South was defeated and destitute, and that was good enough for Northern Big Business, which had begun the war in the first place, all with a mind to crushing Southern competition. That’s capitalism for you. Sure, it’s not as bad as communism, but it can crush you just as easily.
No, the sine qua non of the war was not slavery. As Joseph Johnston noted after the war, had the South wanted to preserve its “peculiar institution,” it could’ve easily done so by “simply laying down our arms in 1861.”
Nobody remembers the Corwin Amendment. It’s not taught in the public schools, which really are Northern-sponsored Marxist indoctrination camps, and of course all the textbooks are printed Up North. Proposed in the late winter of 1861––mere weeks before it became necessary for Pierre Beauregard to fire upon occupying Yankee forces spoiling for war at Fort Sumter, just off the coast of Charleston––this failed, never-ratified constitutional amendment was intended by Northern members of Congress to keep the South on side by guaranteeing the safety of slavery and carving that into legal stone.
But the South wisely rejected this sop to Cerberus. Why? Because she simply wanted her independence from the money-worshipping North, with all its filthy, inhuman industrialisation and Blakean “dark, satanic mills.”
The South was also tired of paying for Northern infrastructure––roads, railroads, bridges, etc.––that Southerners themselves would never use. The gross domestic product of Louisiana was being used to fund Washington’s war department. Factor in the high-percentage tariffs on Southern goods, and there you are.
Lincoln addressed a crowd in Pennsylvania weeks before the war, saying:
“The South may need to be taught a lesson.”
After Southern states began seceding, Dishonest Abe wailed, “We can’t let the South go! Who will pay for the government?”
And after war was well under way and the North was losing, Lincoln, a notorious anti-Catholic bigot, complained, “We have this whole war to blame on popery!”
Much is made of Lincoln’s emancipation of the slaves. But the racist Lincoln actually cared not a jot for blacks. He was simply trying to strike at the South economically.
And had the South won, its black population would have been immeasurably better off. Why? No Jim Crow, pure and simple. Britain (the South’s ally) and France were very busy running the world in those days. Following a Southern victory (perhaps a coup de grâce at a different-outcome Gettysburg), Britain and France would’ve no longer tolerated trading with a slave state, and they would have summarily forced the South to end slavery, just as they had done themselves decades earlier. Slavery was already on the way out throughout the South anyway, and black freedom would have then ensued throughout the new nation of Dixie before the end of the 1860’s. The South would have been obliged to industrialise, perhaps on a smaller scale than that of the North, and it would have evolved into a kind of Southern version of Canada.
That’s the sort of stuff those pesky textbooks don’t teach you, kids. As historian Jack Marlar of the Sons of Confederate Veterans––a 125-year-old heritage and honour society, devoted to education, scholarships and historic preservation and comprised of blood descendants of honourably discharged Southern soldiers––has on many occasions observed:
“No nation or society in human history ever went to war over slavery.”
No, it wasn’t that. The chief casus belli of the War Between the States was something else beginning with an “S”: secession, which, per the Constitution, is actually legal. Union membership was always understood thitherto as voluntary, not a matter of coercion. Another word starting with an “S” is sectionalism. By 1860, the American Empire was already too big to be properly governable, and a North-South break was inevitable. That, after all, is the nature of empires. They tend to break up. Northerners and Southerners had already hated each other to a surprising extent for generations. They were from Up There, and we were from Down Here. Immature, to be sure, but human nature often is.
And there were real differences. The South was more rural and more religious. And true enough, its people by and large were nowhere near as well-educated as their Northern counterparts. Hardscrabble dirt farmers tended to be subliterate or illiterate, and only the members of the slave-owning planter class––less than a tenth of the population––tended to be properly cultured, well-travelled and well-educated.
Left alone and allowed its independence, which could’ve been achieved as a quite amiable separation and without violence but for Northern Big Business and its stooge, Lincoln, the South could have become quite remarkable. It certainly never would have permitted the legalisation of baby-killing and unnatural “marriage,” both of which are devilish Yankee inventions. Blacks in particular and the South broadly, both freed of the mutually degrading effects of slavery, would have enjoyed a real renaissance, with the former quickly becoming a class of educated professionals, as writer Harry Turtledove and actor Richard Dreyfuss outline in their excellent book, The Two Georges, all about a very different and far better America, in which the completely unnecessary American Revolution never took place.
That’s right. Unnecessary. And no American Revolt, no War Between the States. Alas, most Americans don’t realise such things because they’re inclined toward intellectual sloth anyway, and the schools don’t teach this stuff. To a great extent, Americans are brainwashed; fed propagandistic lies, cradle to grave, and distracted by panem et circenses.
How it began
The nine-year French and Indian War began in 1754, when a brash, young upstart named George Washington, overeager and keen to make a name for himself, shot a French officer on the frontier. The British and their American cousins fought side by side, with the former securing the peace and safety of the latter against their French and Amerindian foes.
But the Americans soon acted like petulant, childish ingrates. Securing said peace came at a price very dear for the British purse, to say nothing of the British soldiers who died to protect Americans. A bit of taxes would’ve at least defrayed the financial costs. But the selfish Americans in the Masonic hotbeds of Boston and Philadelphia didn’t want to pay these modest taxes, as they were greedy and worshipped not God but money. They rejected British proposals time after time (taxes on paper, stamps, tea and so on), soon leaving the British no choice. And all this was despite the facts that Americans paid mere pennies a year in taxes, and their British counterparts back home shelled out 14 times as much. Nevertheless, the cabal of Boston-based, virulently anti-Christian Masons decided to foment a revolution, and they eventually dragged an unwilling South into war along with them.
Here’s a parallel: imagine your house catches fire. As a good neighbour, I come over with my garden hose and help you put it out. But I’ve incurred a stiffish water bill as a result, and I’d like your help paying it. Only fair, right? But instead, when I ask you for some money, you angrily refuse and punch me in the nose. You then call on your big friend to beat me up.
Crazy, right? Well, that’s what happened. France became the Colonies’ indispensable ally and won the victory at Yorktown, thus securing American independence. And the parallel is exact.
Who did the runaway slaves and Amerindians fight for? Mostly for the British. The British promised freedom to the former, and they delivered, with countless blacks going to Bermuda, the Caribbean and Canada after the war. To the latter, the British promised land around the Great Lakes. Alas, victory was not given to the just in that war, so the land deal never came to fruition. The escaped slaves that the Americans recaptured were then sold back into slavery, and the Amerindians became the victims of genocide and the massive theft of their lands. Thus 1775 was about nothing––nothing but money.
Americans, who as colonials had enjoyed enormous freedoms and a purely notional, indeed benevolent British government that stayed out of their lives, suddenly found themselves saddled with a host of new, stupid laws, an intrusive American government apparatus, imposing enormous taxes to pay for said unnecessary war (go dig up the men of the Whiskey Rebellion and ask them how much they liked Georgie Washington) and a crushing debt so big that the American economy didn’t even begin to right itself until the 1820’s, as the late conservative columnist Joe Sobran pointed out years ago.
Selling the populace on the con job of American “independence” was no easy task. The printing presses of serial adulterer Ben Franklin worked overtime, and drunken madman Thomas Paine argued the Revolution’s cause in his doggerel tracts. But after the war, many people began to realise that they’d been had. A repentant Paine was among them, and he called out Washington for deep hypocrisy. For his efforts, jumpin’ Georgie threw old Tom under a jail, where he died, broken, penniless and forgotten.
But 1861 was about something, by God. And that was freedom. If you consider that America was founded in slavery, greed and money-worship and that the Revolution and resulting government were wholly illegitimate, then seceding from that evil government had to be a good thing. Thus the War Between the States must be properly understood, and the Confederacy and its heroes deserve to be remembered and their statues unmolested.
Indeed, such desecration is against the law. If only the existing laws upon our books were properly enforced!
A brilliant polymath, famed for his oceanographic achievements, Maury was, shall we say, ambivalent about slavery. He never owned any, but he appears to have advocated its spread, theorising about eventually linking Dixie with South America before his plans were dashed when Pedro II, the saintly emperor of Brasil, stopped him.
Stuart was the South’s flamboyant cavalier. The South needed a knight in shining armour, and Stuart was happy to oblige. How he felt about slavery is not known.
But Davis, Lee and Jackson, to a man, all opposed it. Such things used to be more commonly known. Forty years ago, when we were taught such material in school, Lee was related to us as a noble man who was forced to fight for a cause that wasn’t always noble. So we were led to believe. It would be 20 years before I learned the full truth about this deeply Christian man.
On Fox News last week, Laura Ingraham, who is smart enough to know better, cited Lee as “a slave-owner” and left it at that. Shame on her. In reality, Lee freed his slaves a generation before it was hip to do so. He spoke out passionately against slavery.
Jackson supported a black Sunday School class. He even managed to send it money even during the war. And Davis adopted a young black boy, also in the midst of the war.
Are these the acts of racist men? Only an idiot would think so. Longstreet, Beauregard and countless other Southern leaders opposed slavery as well. Abolitionism was not unique to the North.
The Catholic priests and bishops throughout the South neatly encapsulated my own view. To a man, they all opposed slavery yet favoured secession anyway.
Again, we see the phenomenon of the mixed bag. Most of the slave-owners of New Orléans freed their slaves in the 1850’s, after a call to pray for that intention on the part of that Catholic city’s priests. After the war, Wilmington was known for a shameful record of race relations, including the riots of 1898. But such things never happened in Savannah, which was known for its racial harmony both before and after the war, as John Berendt writes in Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil.
Talking of books, the efforts of Dr. Thomas DiLorenzo will show you the truth about the much-mythologised Lincoln. And Brian Cisco’s War Crimes Against Southern Civilians will make your blood boil.
In our modern times, H.K. Edgerton left his post as head of the Asheville Chapter of the NAACP to join the Sons of Confederate Veterans. A noted apologist for the Southern Cause, Edgerton––known for his educational talks, in which he decries Lincoln’s racism––is among the black men in the SCV’s ranks. Another is retired school principal Nathan Winbush.
Black social critics drs. Thomas Sowell and Shelby Steele have noted that slavery has bugger-all to do with the plight of modern American blacks. But the so-called reforms of the LBJ administration have everything to do with it.
The late Walter Williams, a noted black intellectual and conservative, wrote many times in favour of the Confederacy. Before he died last year, Williams, a famous economics professor, wrote:
“The Confederacy has been the excuse for some of today’s rioting, property destruction and grossly uninformed statements.”
He also castigated the treasonous general, the feeble-minded and China-coddling Mark Milley, for wasting time in efforts to rename army bases named for Confederate generals. Milley also betrayed Donald Trump––still our real president, not the senile Manchurian Candidate currently usurping the presidency––and for that the moronic, malevolent Milley and all his ilk deserve summary courts-martial and lifetime prison sentences.
And I’d say lengthy prison sentences for the vandals and Orcs who lay waste our cities and destroy our monuments would only be just and fair. Serve ’em right.
But alas, justice is dead in this country, beset as we are by kangaroo courts, usurping impostors and gutless leaders, too many bought by Beijing. We shall never see justice. This is no longer our country. It’s well on the way to becoming a satrapy of China. Look at Richmond, Atlanta and other such modern messes, and you can see what some 300,000 dead Southern men and boys tried to prevent.
All we can do is “look away, look away…”
I’m irresistibly reminded of Lee’s last words:
“Strike the tent.”
I’m sorry, Marse Robert. We have failed you. This is no longer Dixie, and indeed it’s no longer America. The best we can do is get off this Titanic. America cannot be saved, only abandoned. Get to southern Chile, if you can, as many Christian families from America and Germany have done, even just this year so far. There perhaps you can reconstitute a version of Dixie. I have it on good authority that the locals will love and respect you for it.
Until then, cherish Dixie and carry the Confederacy in your hearts.
At least that no man can take from you.
---The views and opinions expressed in “A Conservative Point of View” are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Lincoln Herald.
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