A Balanced Report On the Sesquicentennial

Thanks to CBS’s “Sunday Morning” show for producing one of the most balanced accounts of the Civil War Sesquicentennial that I’ve seen in some time. Not only was it thoughtful, but it managed to include a number of important perspectives without taking on the loaded question of why and how we are still fighting the Civil War. Click here for one of the worst examples of this style of reporting out of England.

Searching for Black Confederates: The Civil War’s Most Persistent Myth

“Levin’s study is the first of its kind to blueprint and then debunk the mythology of enslaved African Americans who allegedly served voluntarily in behalf of the Confederacy.”–Journal of Southern History

Purchase your copy today!

4 comments… add one
  • Bennet Young Apr 25, 2011 @ 7:08

    Given my usual opinion on what comes out of CBS, this better than I expected. Both “sides” could make cases for where it might have erred. The only thing that really struck me as off, were the reenactors. I have been doing reenacting for about 16 years and that was some of the farbiest stuff I have seen. Nylon flags! etc

    • Carl W. Roden Apr 28, 2011 @ 11:22


      You’re kidding?! I mean do they have Made In China tags on them too?!
      I do not often agree with much on here, but Benny-boy I think you are dead on with this one.
      Makes me wanna puke! What’s next….inflatable mattresses?

  • Andy Hall Apr 24, 2011 @ 16:04

    I caught that this morning, but wasn’t hugely impressed. It seemed to be superficial, highlighting several disputes without actually assessing the substance of any of them. There was, for example, the bit about how ACW reenactors are sometimes unfairly accused of “wanting to continue fighting the war” compared to reenactors from other periods, which is never really explained in the piece. And there was a lazy reference to “political correctness,” which means who-knows-what. (I liked the part at the end about Franklin, very much.) I’m glad the sesquicentennial is getting attention, but stories like this don’t seem to have a whole lot of substance to latch onto in a discussion.

    Sunday Morning is a pretty good show, one I used to watch faithfully, because it had just about exactly the right pace for its time slot. I’d really like it if they took on the sesquicentennial as a regular feature, with an extended story on some specific aspect of the remembrance, every few weeks. If they took that approach, there’s a lot of material they could cover, and cover well, over the next four years.

    • Kevin Levin Apr 24, 2011 @ 16:13

      I can’t win. I get nailed for my overly critical commentary on a silly photography exhibit and now I am letting Sunday Morning off too easily. 🙂

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