Responses to Vandalism of Confederate Statue in Montgomery

Perhaps I shouldn’t be surprised at the dearth of reactions to the arrest of three white teenagers for the recent vandalism of a Confederate statue in Montgomery, Alabama.  The rush to judgment sheds light on our assumptions about how race ought to determine how we remember the past. From the Florida Times-Union:

“Well, I was dead wrong in my perception that they were black,.  The fact that they were (white) makes it even more less forgivable because it enabled people to jump to false conclusions.”  — John Napier, former member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans

“I could have betted $100 million that they weren’t black. Black people don’t do things like that.  I knew they were white and they were educated whites because of the Nat Turner reference.” — State Rep. Alvin Holmes, D-Montgomery (African American)

“I tend not to be surprised at anything in this day and time.  I haven’t tried to analyze that little scribbling they did. If indeed that was a reference to Nat Turner, it seems quite strange that high school students would know about that and not about their own history.  There might be some left-wing bozo they’ve been teaching history with.” — Leonard Wilson, division commander of the Alabama Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans

Hey Mr. Wilson, maybe these kids do consider Nat Turner to be part of their history.  Maybe they don’t draw artificial distinctions around what is worth remembering.

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7 thoughts on “Responses to Vandalism of Confederate Statue in Montgomery

  1. Chris Paysinger

    As a life long Alabamian, I would like to apologize for the fact that our state allows
    Mr. Wilson live here. And make ridiculous comments. I teach Nat Turner,David Walker, etc as OUR history as Americans. Unfortunately Mr. Wilson may only see “his” history as that of the Wallace era, Jim Crow, etc. I truly do hate that the monument was defaced. But I am glad that it wasn’t black teens to keep from giving fodder to people like Mr. Wilson. I don’t understand why people/groups believe that race would dictate(wholly) a persons perception of history. White people have never moved in concerted lock-step purely because they are white. I am very worried about the fact that people like Mr. Wilson will be a part of Alabama’s planning for the 150th anniversary of the war. Kevin it has been good to read about Virginia’s efforts and direction.

    Reply
  2. Tim Lacy

    On Mr. Napier’s comment, did he really say it was “less forgivable?” Wow. It is clear that this country still has a lot to do in terms of race education. Why assume any color?

    And, to even think about charging anyone, of any color, with a hate crime is beyond me. Doesn’t that law only apply to the living, much like you can ony slander or libel a living human? It’s JUST vandalism, plain and simple.

    The reactions to this show just how much we haven’t gotten over our race problem.

    Thanks for the post, Kevin. – TL

    Reply
  3. elementaryhistoryteacher

    Heavy sigh…..I just wanted to come by and say hello and damn if I’m not slapped in the face by some of my own kind. Well, I guess the only thing I have in common with the folks you quoted is we are from the same region of the country. We are miles apart in opinions, however.

    Two of the folks you quoted are involved in legislation and what really, really bothers me is these are they same bozos that try tell you and I and every other educator how to do our jobs.

    Well anyway….hello!

    Reply
  4. Kevin

    EHT, — Nice to hear from you. It has indeed been quite some time. Hope all is well with you.

    John, — I thought I recognized myself in that description (LOL).

    Reply

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