Confederate Statues or Losing Minds Over History

Screwtop

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Doesn't it seem strange that we built monuments to traitors and war-losers?

The worn-out defense which poses the Southern States fighting for their traditional interests against the unfair interests of the nation is a straw-man argument.

The real objection to taking down Confederate monuments is that this effort is perceived as an attack on confederate racial attitudes. And, maybe that's what it is. And, maybe it's about time, more than 160 years after the issue came to a head.




Let me be clear, this is not a matter of racism. Those who are tearing down the monuments make it a matter of racism, and a matter of treason. The South seceded when they thought the government was prodding into there personal lives, taxing all the crops grown down towards the South, and favored Northern industries and political figures. They fought for there homes, there families, there state and what they thought was there rights. Many of them could not bear to see there home state being invaded by an army sent out by the federal government. Yes, they lost the war. Yes, they seceded from the union. Yes, even a few of them approved of slavery. But here is the key factor: They were Americans. Right or wrong, they were Americans none the less.

As for national interest, many, many, many people don't want to see these monuments go. Those who are calling for there removal protest in the streets as if these statues were alive, and waging war. The protests sometimes get violent and for what? A bronze stationary statue? With that being said, these are monuments to someones relatives. 3x great grandfathers, uncles, cousins... These are monuments to history, monuments to American men, monuments to an old, dead cause... You can't just change that.

The issue is much broader than what folks want to admit. Those wanting to tear down the statues want to erase history. You can't do that! If you erase something, what replaces it? You could put anything in its place!

These are my opinions, and I mean no malice towards others of different opinions. I am just tired of seeing blind hate run rampant.
 

BF109

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Let me be clear, this is not a matter of racism. Those who are tearing down the monuments make it a matter of racism, and a matter of treason. The South seceded when they thought the government was prodding into there personal lives, taxing all the crops grown down towards the South, and favored Northern industries and political figures. They fought for there homes, there families, there state and what they thought was there rights. Many of them could not bear to see there home state being invaded by an army sent out by the federal government. Yes, they lost the war. Yes, they seceded from the union. Yes, even a few of them approved of slavery. But here is the key factor: They were Americans. Right or wrong, they were Americans none the less.

As for national interest, many, many, many people don't want to see these monuments go. Those who are calling for there removal protest in the streets as if these statues were alive, and waging war. The protests sometimes get violent and for what? A bronze stationary statue? With that being said, these are monuments to someones relatives. 3x great grandfathers, uncles, cousins... These are monuments to history, monuments to American men, monuments to an old, dead cause... You can't just change that.

The issue is much broader than what folks want to admit. Those wanting to tear down the statues want to erase history. You can't do that! If you erase something, what replaces it? You could put anything in its place!

These are my opinions, and I mean no malice towards others of different opinions. I am just tired of seeing blind hate run rampant.

Well said, Screwtop! It's shameful what's happening. And as far as the South being traitors, the British used the same label in 1775.
 

Screwtop

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The brits lost. They wouldn't erect statues of there conquerors. Besides, we are two separate nations.

Billy yank, or Johnny reb, it was Americans fighting for a cause, that's the difference in this situation.
 

historic-antiques

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To All Who Sympathize with Confederate Statues and Symbol:

I too am a lover of history, I appreciate great deeds of valor and humanity - regardless of which sides he/she may have supported. Yes, I even think it's important to know about Hitler and Nazism, and certainly about the brilliance and heroics of people like Robert E. Lee and others. We know where we're going and what we should be doing, if we know where we came from.

That being said, re-inventing history, deniers, and people who glorify the most catastrophic and inhumane treatments of human beings - be it the Nazi death camps or slave plantations - is very common today, almost becoming "chic," fashionable, and justifiable. This is where I stop, most definitely. And this is where we have to think what all these monuments and symbols mean, how they affect people's thinking, and how we use them to educate our national/international public about the deep social/moral issues they represent - not simply that so and so was a great leader, or soldiers fought for their families or against taxes, etc. The effects of their actions went FAR beyond their homes, and negatively affected millions of people... even to this day.

Thus I have no problem with Confederate monuments and symbols, so long as educational content is added to their plaques about what slavery meant to African families, forced into bondage. Did Gen. Lee fight for this, or was he simply zealously loyal to Virginia? What might they symbolize to our long-term social/cultural history, etc. etc.

An uneducated and misinformed public is the greatest threat to democracy and our national ideals set forth in our Declaration of Independence (i.e. "...all men are created equal..."), our Constitution (guaranteed due process, eligibility for asylum, etc.), and symbolized by our Statue of Liberty.
 

Screwtop

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Well said.



Here is a quote from Lee just as war was inevitable back in early 1861.

"With all my devotion to the Union and the feeling of loyalty and duty of an American citizen, I have not been able to make up my mind to raise my hand against my relatives, my children, my home. I have therefore resigned my commission in the army, and save in defense of my native state, with the sincere hope that my poor services may never be needed, I hope I may never be called on to draw my sword..."
 

historic-antiques

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Doesn't it seem strange that we built monuments to traitors and war-losers?

The worn-out defense which poses the Southern States fighting for their traditional interests against the unfair interests of the nation is a straw-man argument.

The real objection to taking down Confederate monuments is that this effort is perceived as an attack on confederate racial attitudes. And, maybe that's what it is. And, maybe it's about time, more than 160 years after the issue came to a head.

Harry - I think we are talking about two different situations that emerge nowadays. On one hand we have your mundane white supremacists, KKK-types, largely uneducated and misinformed, who rally around monuments and use them to somehow glorify slavery, racism, and hate from the past, and to justify them today. They attempt to use something or somebody "great" to make them feel better and bolster their social and moral values in the eyes of the public. They use monuments and symbols entirely and fraudulently wrong. I agree with your statement at this point.

On the other hand, we have people who genuinely admire the courage and brilliance of Confederate leaders and their soldiers (and of Union leaders/soldiers for that matter), regardless of their views of racism and slavery. They do not use monuments and other symbols to justify and legitimize their social/political and moral values, much less to popularize them

I fall in the latter camp. The problem is usually there is very little or no educational value attached to these monuments and symbols. Included on their plaques should be what the noted person or place meant to Africans who were torn from their homes, thousands of miles away, and forced into deadly slavery; what slavery meant to our nation, socially, culturally and politically - then and now. I feel monuments are OK, so long as they include this type of educational component.

Otherwise as we know, uneducated, misinformed citizens are the greatest threat to democracy, and to our Founding Father ideals of "...all men are created equal..." and due process/asylum eligibility, and to the values symbolized by our Statue of Liberty.
 

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