The Death Knell of Confederate Heritage

Despite Politico’s recent claim that “the Confederacy Still Lives” it is, in fact, in full retreat. Confederate flags are being removed from public places and holidays honoring Confederate generals are being revised or removed from the calendars. It is a process that will continue as each new generation moves further away from the history itself and is able to re-assess its legacy.

That is exactly what is happening this week in Texas surrounding a proposal to re-name and move ‘Confederate Heroes Day.’ The proposal is the work of an Austin eighth grader by the name of Jacob Hale. Hale believes that the current holiday does an injustice to his states unionists. He proposes to re-name the holiday to ‘Civil War Remembrance Day‘ and move it to May.

The meeting yesterday brought plenty of people who spoke out against the change. One of them was Texas Division Commander of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, Johnnie Holley.

The state of Texas voted to secede from the Union, so any man from Texas who went to fight for the Union was a traitor to his country. So as a Texan I don’t want to honor someone who came and fought against the state of Texas.

I appreciate Holley’s honesty, but I would suggest that such a view is part of the problem for Confederate heritage advocates. It’s a losing argument in 2015.

Jacob Hale is not an aberration. His understanding of the war fits comfortably within the generations raised in post-civil rights America. Of course, we will continue to witness bitter debates about how we remember and commemorate the Confederacy, but its place in Southern memory will never again enjoy the level of acceptance it once did.

Young Jacob Hale is doing nothing less than hammering in the nails of its coffin.

69 comments add yours

  1. The Houston Press has a story on Hale’s effort, as well:

    http://blogs.houstonpress.com/news/2015/04/confederacy_buffs_fight_to_keep_confederate_heroes_day_in_texas.php

    According to that article, the holiday in Texas only dates back to 1973, so (like so much else) it’s not something that has been handed down by Confederate veterans, through the sacred mists of time.

    Interesting quote from the piece:

    Rudy Roy, a member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans from Palestine, Texas, told lawmakers that political correctness was threatening to scrub history. “If we start trying to change the historical record for political reasons, we do great damage to our heritage,” he told the committee, before loudly declaring, “We were not a Yankee state!”

    You see this argument again and again and again — that altering or removing a public display of reverence for the Confederacy is “changing the historical record” or “erasing history.” It says a great deal about how superficial these folks’ understanding of history and the historical record is, that it’s supposedly measured by the number of monuments or flags on public display. I wish someone on the committee would’ve asked Mr. Roy exactly what part of the historical record would disappear if the holiday were changed.

    • It’s an inability to differentiate between history and what kind of narrative a community wishes to tell about that history. The SCV can’t comprehend that distinction because their preferred memory is the history.

  2. I think it signals the death knell of a current trend in what is labeled as “Confederate Heritage”, being the way that it’s currently defined by the loudest advocates (a smaller group than the voice being projected, I might add) of a certain path of “commemoration”, if not even “celebration”. I’ve always wondered what it might be like if an “advocate” of heritage might acknowledge personal (or, even better… group) understanding that slavery was a core reason for many who supported (and made possible) the Confederacy, though, at the same time, demonstrating an educated understanding that there WERE also those who were not advocates of slavery, but true believers (at that time) of “States’ Rights” in the “defense of hearth and home” sense. Of course, that certainly compromises “Confederate heritage” as it’s being portrayed by the current “loud crowd”. I think the individual experience endured by the Confederate soldier can be appreciated in a commemorative manner, but “the cause”, being fed by so many different perspectives that did not necessarily see eye-to-eye, makes for a (obviously) much more complicated element in “commemoration”, and pushes more strongly for a need to educate… but not in the way that the current crowd understands “education”… if that makes sense.

    • Thanks for the comment, Robert. It seems to me that this eighth grader’s understanding of Confederate heritage is a huge step in the right direction. He does not call for the end of commemorations that acknowledge the experiences of the Confederate soldier. What he appears to want is for a broader acknowledgment of the broad range of his fellow Texans who experienced the war.

      The SCV’s public statements to the contrary are a huge problem for those people who wish to commemorate a Confederate past. Individuals and organizations can engage in a wide range of acts of commemoration of their ancestors. What they are having more and more difficulty with is in framing the service of that ancestor in a cause that was beneficial to this country. In other words, the Confederacy lost and we can all be thankful for it regardless of who your great-great grandfather happens to be.

      • “It seems to me that this eighth grader’s understanding of Confederate heritage is a huge step in the right direction. He does not call for the end of commemorations that acknowledge the experiences of the Confederate soldier. What he appears to want is for a broader acknowledgment of the broad range of his fellow Texans who experienced the war.”

        Exactly… and the very thing I had in mind when I posted so much about the broader range of sentiments found in the Shenandoah Valley. Confederates are still part of that broader commemoration.

        “The SCV’s public statements to the contrary are a huge problem for those people who wish to commemorate a Confederate past.”

        Again, I agree, and, in fact, not all of the SCV are participants in the “loud crowd”. I just wish those who continue to hold membership, yet understand that there were different people with different agendas in the Confederacy, would get a larger voice. I just doubt seriously that it will ever happen.

        As I’ve said time and time again… I don’t need to carry Confederate flags and march in parades to “commemorate” my Confederate ancestors. Rather, I look at it as a more silent contemplation of their individual places within the bigger picture. Then again, blogging about that mindful consideration isn’t necessarily silent, but “demonstrating” on a different level (and with a more educated… call it “nuanced”, I suppose… understanding).

        • You have always been my poster-boy for Confederate heritage. 🙂

          In all seriousness, I would love to hear what you think is involved in moving from the position of the commander of the Texas SCV to a more nuanced understanding like yours. I am looking for something beyond the acknowledgment of a rich family heritage that encompasses multiple and often conflicting narratives. What are the intellectual moves that must be made? There is an essay in here and you should write it.

          • “I would love to hear what you think is involved in moving from the position of the commander of the Texas SCV to a more nuanced understanding like yours.”

            Some of these folks just won’t budge… and despite what some might think, it’s not a matter of convincing them to think like me, per se… but to just be more open-minded and to demonstrate the same through what they say. I’d suggest that, in most cases, acknowledging the slave issue doesn’t compromise the legacy of the common dirt farmer turned Confederate soldier… or (as in the case of some research I’m doing right now on an Episcopal bishop from that time) even the story of well-to-do Southerners who started off Unionist and flipped to the Confederacy (it’s all a matter of studying individuals within the larger picture, of course). As all “is written” at this time in organizations such as the SCV, however, openly acknowdging that complicated “for slavery” aspect in various Southerners stands to crumble a core belief system of the organization.

      • who was your great grand father,Mr.Kline.?obviously not a between of the civil war.the north lost more men than the South.How can a 13 year old appreciate any realities of the civil war.He doesn’t even have a fully developed brain.The war was a politically motivated war bent on the reputation of Lincoln,Grant and Sherman.Two of which were mad men.So the Yankees can’t claim that they won with such losses as they incurred.Nobody won.When a country losses 650,000 men. That’s not a victory. That’s madness.So you can remove all the Southern,Confederate holidays you want young 8th grader.But history will never eradicate the facts.

        • Well, since the kid is using facts I would say the only thing that got eradicated was the lost cause myth, and since he is only 13 we should have some high expectations for him should he decide to focus his studies on history.

          When a country loses 650,000 men that’s not a victory. That’s madness. There is some truth to that. It was madness for a group of slave owners to break the laws of the United States and start a war like they did. It was madness for the people that chose to follow those madmen in turning against their own country to fight. It was madness to wage a long war that resulted in the destruction of the South and the very institution those slave owners chose to go crazy over.

          Yet, they did it and got a lot of people killed. Unfortunately we have people who choose to ignore the facts and insist in glorifying those madmen while ignoring what the war was about.

        • For someone who is criticizing a 13 year old, you certainly haven’t offered anything here that even approaches a mature understanding of this history.

        • Grant and Sherman were nonentities at the beginning of the war and Lincoln not even sworn in when succession began. Seems to me it was politically motivated by Southern madmen instead.

          The North lost because they lost more men? Napoleon’s First Empire should still be around then too. The South lost politically, diplomatically, militarily, and economically. They did manage to claw back the racism part during Reconstruction though.

      • As a descendent of Confederate soldiers, I resent this move to slowly remove remembrance and commemoration of those who, in the context of the times in which they lived and honestly held opinions, did what they believed was right. Sure, there were varied reasons by some for why they supported Southern Independence. Just as there were varied reasons by some for why they supported Independence of the Colonies from the English Government. If the Confederates were wrong, then the Revolutionaries of 1776 were also wrong. You can’t have it both ways.

        • The US was about to breach its agreement pertaining to slavery with Southern states in 1860. The overreach of the northeast states coupled with their lack of integrity forced the rebellion. The results of the war were reversed Nov 8, 2016. No more overreach. The South won the war and all hell is breaking loose.

          • Better start learning some history to back up the claim there. Looks to me like the primary sources show the Confederacy losing and slavery ending. As for today, Trump’s election didn’t do anything but establish who the next president of the US would be. The Confederacy and the slavery it stood for are still dead.

    • Good points, Robert. The slavery issue is one of the main sticking points for the heritage crew. If they acknowledge that slavery was the cause of the civil war then they have to admit that while the individuals soldiers fought for a multitude of reasons, one of them was to have the right to own human beings. At that point their facade crumbles and the rest of the actual history falls into place in a way that they would prefer to ignore.

      Just look at the reenactments throughout the sesquicentennial. The heritage crew was quite happy to denote them right up to 2014 when the war turned against the confederacy. At that point all of a sudden the heritage crew quit talking about glorious southern victories and just whined about other things. Now we see the end of the CW, the death of Lincoln, and the heritage crew is in hiding.

      What did the heritage crews accomplish in the last four years? They raised a few flags, tried to boycott a town and even broke their own boycott in the process, and waved some flags. They changed no opinions and no one’s minds. They failed utterly to accomplish what they set out to do. The only thing they can do is whine loudly, but really no one notices them.

      Instead, the NPS and thousands of historians used the sesqui to educate people on the conflict. They succeeded quite well. I can only hope we continue in this vein as we explore Reconstruction over the next 12 years.

      • If they acknowledge that slavery was the cause of the civil war then they have to admit that while the individuals soldiers fought for a multitude of reasons, one of them was to have the right to own human beings.

        The problem is that some of these men did not fight (for personal reasons) to own human beings. What do you do about men who were drafted? The way to lay it out is to say that regardless of whether they volunteered or were drafted and regardless of their personal reasons they served in an army that functioned as the military arm of a government that was formed to protect and expand slavery.

        • “one of them was to have the right to own human beings”

          Agreed, Jimmy… and I suspect that’s something you won’t see acknowledged in SCV dialogue in print.

          Kevin, but even if there were some who were drafted, there were also those who volunteered who were not “slave-minded”. Furthermore, I found it fascinating that there were soldiers who actually abhored the treatment of slaves and demonstrated an understanding (in writing, no less) of the moral problems with sustaining slavery, yet were early war volunteers… even civilians who eventually sided with the Confederacy with the same thinking in their minds. Surely they knew that victory for the Confederacy would sustain the slave system, yet, it’s almost as if that could be set aside for the time because they saw a larger crisis in the military threat of Federal troops being sent into the South. It’s a difficult thing for us to reflect on, but I suspect, for some, it may have been just as difficult for them to reconcile with… picking the larger situation to deal with at the time. I’m not justifying… it’s just a reflection made.

          • Kevin, but even if there were some who were drafted, there were also those who volunteered who were not “slave-minded”.

            No doubt.

            Surely they knew that victory for the Confederacy would sustain the slave system, yet, it’s almost as if that could be set aside for the time because they saw a larger crisis in the military threat of Federal troops being sent into the South.

            Again, I agree

            The problem as I see it with many Confederate heritage folks today is the way they jump from what they believe their great-great grandfather fought for to what the Confederacy was fighting for. That is a fundamental mistake.

            • “That is a fundamental mistake.”

              Yup… and it comes full circle… the doubt, considering the current trend, that this depth of understanding will be acknowledged as the more “full package”, vice the “it wasn’t about slavery” generalization, thrown like a blanket across the whole.

        • Every one of the CSA soldiers knew that one of the things they were fighting for was the right to own other human beings. They personally may have disagreed with that, but even so that was one of the things they were fighting for as a soldier in that army. We can rephrase it like you did or just say they fought for others to own slaves. It still ends up being the same.

          Had the Confederacy won the war slavery would have continued to exist due to the efforts of the men who fought for the CSA. The heritage crew wants to obscure this important point just like they obscure all aspects of slavery. Just look at what Connie says about it. They know what the deal is. In order for them to move on they have to reconcile how slavery existed in the South and its role in the conflict. Until they can do that, they will always be stuck at square one.

          • Every one of the CSA soldiers knew that one of the things they were fighting for was the right to own other human beings.

            How do you propose to prove this claim? I don’t claim to know what every Confederate soldier knew or didn’t know.

            • How do you propose to deny it? I obviously cannot read minds, but we have to remember that was a different time period where owning slaves was the norm. We know from the primary sources what was said by many about slavery. So those men had to know that if they won, slavery would survive. That’s an obvious fact.

              Robert is doing a good job explaining this as well. They may not have been fighting for their own desire to own slaves. They may have been coerced, shamed, drafted, or whatever into the military, but they were there. They could see slaves around them doing what slaves did in the south. It was part of their lives and their culture. They were fighting to preserve that life and that culture.

              Regardless of what they said, slavery was something that was going to continue to exist if they won. I do not think it requires any imagination to say those men understood that. At the simplest of all levels they knew that winning meant things would stay the same and losing meant things would change. For them that involved the issue of slavery.

              • So those men had to know that if they won, slavery would survive. That’s an obvious fact.

                That’s not what you said in the previous comment.

                Every one of the CSA soldiers knew that one of the things they were fighting for was the right to own other human beings.

                This implies motivation and I am simply saying that you cannot know this to be true. Of course, they understood the consequences of defeat, but that still doesn’t get us to your claim as I understood it.

              • It was implicit in the cause they were fighting for. If they won they could own other human beings whether they wanted to or not. It did not matter if they agreed with the goal or not. All of the confederate soldiers knew that slavery was one of the reasons they were fighting.

              • I don’t see how you can sustain the final point in your comment regardless of how many times you repeat it.

              • I don’t see how you can possibly reject it based upon the primary sources that describe the world they knew.

              • I don’t see how that constitutes anything that resembles an argument. This is the claim you made.

                Every one of the CSA soldiers knew that one of the things they were fighting for was the right to own other human beings

                This is a claim about motivation, which I believe is untenable. Certainly white Southerners understood the importance of slavery and many Confederates openly shared that its preservation was, in some way, a factor in their personal motivation. I just don’t see how you can make a universal claim along these lines.

              • Looks like you and I are just going to have to disagree on this issue.

              • Jimmy, while they may have been aware that Confederate victory meant the preservation of slavery, I suggest it was just a minor point in the back of the minds of an undeterminable number who fought without (emphasis on without) slavery as a motivating factor. Furthermore, we all know there are sources out there that show the resentment felt by the dirt-farmer (the non-conscripted dirt farmers as well as the conscripted) turned soldier toward the wealthy slaveholders. I actually wonder how many upper South (and those from the lower South as well) Confederate soldiers left the ranks before 1864 and after ’64, who may have felt the preservation of slavery was more important to those in high places, overall, than that which seemed, at the time, the final straw that pushed upper South toward secession. In fact, I’ve identified a few in my neck of the woods, in the Shenandoah Valley.

              • The problem with Jimmy’s generalization is that it leaves no room to focus on local dynamics (down to the street level) that may have influenced men to join and stay in the army. This does not preclude pushing slavery to the sidelines, but it does allow for a closer appreciation of motivation on an individual/family/community level.

              • The generalization stands because those men knew that their actions were protective of slavery. Even if they disagreed with slavery, they knew that fighting for the confederacy meant to protect slavery.

                Kevin, at no time did I say they enlisted to protect slavery. Now you’re starting to slide into a different area as to why they fought. I’ve been over this before. Regardless of why they chose to fight (coercion was also possible via the draft) they knew that slavery was being protected by their actions.

                The generalization stands. We can make a generalization about the Union troops by 1865 too can’t we? Whether they liked the idea or not, by 1865 they knew that they were fighting to end slavery. That generalization does not mean they enlisted to end slavery or that they were not racists. It is just a broad generalization that fits what was occurring.

              • I think Jimmy is referring to James McPherson’s book, For Cause and Comrades, in which he concludes that confederate soldiers accepted that because they were fighting for the confederacy, then the protection of slavery was one of the rights for which they were fighting. He based that conclusion on his sample of letters and diaries of confederate soldiers, saying that while 20% of the sample specifically said they were fighting for slavery, none of the soldiers in his sample said the opposite. Certainly I agree we can’t say it applies to 100% of confederate soldiers, but I think we can safely say that most confederate soldiers understood the issues of the day and understood why there was a confederacy. While slavery may not have motivated all of them, and indeed might not have motivated a majority of them, the majority of them probably accepted, whether reluctantly or not, that because they were fighting for the victory of the confederacy they were therefore fighting for the preservation of slavery whether it actually motivated their enlistment or not.

              • Hi Al,

                I don’t think he was making a connection to McPherson’s study because at no point does he make such a claim. I simply took issue with the way his generalization was formulated, which I believe cannot be proven. Certainly, most Confederate soldiers understood that whatever they were fighting for had some connection to the maintenance of slavery. Such a claim is different from suggesting that every soldier was motivated by x.

              • I did not make a connection to McPherson’s book because I have not read it as of yet.

                Every one of the CSA soldiers knew that one of the things they were fighting for was the right to own other human beings.

                That is a true statement. It does not matter if they agreed with the concept or not. They knew they were supporting slavery by fighting for the confederacy. That was their world. It was what they knew. The secession conventions were full of slavery rhetoric. Secession occurred because of slavery. The newspapers were full of slavery talk as well. It was the topic of the day.

                They flat out knew they were fighting for slavery. I do not see how you can reject the statement, Kevin. Yes, it is a generalization, but it is one that rings true. You can look north and see a fight over slavery developing even though that was not why the men went to war at first. However, by the end of the conflict it was crystal clear that they were fighting to end slavery even if they didn’t personally care one way or the other about it.

                I dislike generalizations as a rule of thumb, but there are times when a generalization is correct.

                Al makes the point with his last sentence. That’s a generalization that is correct in my opinion.

              • This is simply not how I go about thinking or researching about Confederate soldiers. If it works for you than so be it.

              • “Regardless of what they said, slavery was something that was going to continue to exist if they won.”
                I have to respectively disagree with you on this statement. The institution of slavery was expensive, and the industrial age would eventually have caught up with it and brought about its demise. The end of Slavery resulted in the former slaves and the poor white farmers becoming victims of another form of slavery – Sharecropping.

              • All of the evidence suggests otherwise. Slavery fit easily into a growing industrial economy in the United States by the Civil War. I suggest reading Edward Baptist’s new book, _The Half Has Never Been Told_ and John Majewski’s _Modernizing a Slave Economy_.

  3. … and as I said on your Facebook extension… hat’s off to Hale. It’s something I mentioned years back in a post, as a possible broader audience-capturing appreciation… and alternative to Confederate History Month in Virginia.

  4. It might actually be a good thing if changing the holiday made large parts of the historical record vanish; I could use more bookshelf space.

  5. I am amazed at the defense of slavery on-line at the Civil War Trust website. My “favorite” is how the cotton gin doomed slavery, when it was just the opposite. After that was cleared up it was “should have given the steam powered tractor a chance”, and, if not that, the gasoline powdered tractor. I am not sure how many technological chances these folks are prepared to give…Never once have I read an acknowledgement from the pro-Confederates on that thread that slavery was an evil cancer on the soul of America. If slavery is acknowledged as a negative, it is always on the fact that there were enslaved people in the north , as in “two wrongs make a right..”

      • It is on the Facebook page of the organization Civil War Trust. I tried to do a link with my Kindle but it wouldn’t cooperate. Sorry! Several posts had to be removed because the authors were posting about their glee over Lincoln’s death.

  6. “The state of Texas voted to secede from the Union, so any man from Texas who went to fight for the Union was a traitor to his country. So as a Texan I don’t want to honor someone who came and fought against the state of Texas.”

    That’s part of the problem. As long as people continue to think secession was constitutional they will make this mistake. It was not constitutional and it is still not constitutional. I wonder what he thought secession was about. I’m sure he will ignore the facts and state something besides slavery. So then two important facts would be overlooked.

    The result is the statement which misses reality. Those who seceded were traitors to the United States of America. Until the SCV gets this into their heads, they will continue to be a pretty useless group of people who pass off lies instead of the truth regarding the Civil War.

    • On the Facebook page I cited there were several comments about how the Constitution provides for secession…which, of course, it doesn’t. A member of the United Daughters of the Confederacy stated something about how not all history is in books and she knew much of it. I have to say I actually feel sorry for some of these people, as they have been sold a bill of goods, but others seem filled with actual hatred…

        • Yes, the same Civil War Trust that helps preserve the battlefields. The man who monitors the site told me in a message that they knew they would have a strong reaction from some about their tribute to Lincoln and his death, but even they were unprepared for some of the statements.

    • “Those who seceded were traitors to the United States of America.” Okay, I will agree with you on that PROVIDED you agree that the Revolutionaries of the Colonies were guilty of being traitors to the English Government. You can’t have it both ways!

      • I will agree with you on that PROVIDED you agree that the Revolutionaries of the Colonies were guilty of being traitors to the English Government.

        I thought that was generally acknowledged. Certainly the British thought so. When Franklin said, “we must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately,” what did you think he was talking about?

        • Notice how people like to bring the Revolution into argument? They seek to legitimize the actions of the secessionists. They try to establish a correlation of the two events, yet avoid why those two events took place. They were two totally different events that occurred for different reasons. They want to avoid the issue of slavery as the cause of the Civil War.

  7. Reading Janney’s recent book just after seeing this post and ran across a quote from a Missouri newspaper in 1881. Certain Confederate veteran reunions were a problem for the reporter because they hindered sectional reconciliation, however he hoped that “they will all disappear in time” and that future generations would not be so enamored with the Confederate cause. Just thought that was funny, considering I had just read your post.

    Also, in regard to Mr. Holley’s comment about “traitors,” a pot and kettle come to mind. 🙂

  8. Wouldn’t “Confederate Heritage” be a part of Civil War Remembrance Day? I don’t get what the SCV is complaining about.

    • The head of the Texas division is very clear about why he objectives to the change. I think you should take him at his word.

  9. Perhaps Black Texans and the descendants of Texas unionists do not want to honor people who fought to take Texas out of the United States.

  10. Johnnie Holley said,
    “The state of Texas voted to secede from the Union, so any man from Texas who went to fight for the Union was a traitor to his country. So as a Texan I don’t want to honor someone who came and fought against the state of Texas.”

    Therefore, by his logic, Sam Houston is a traitor to Texas. …
    Mr. Holley needs to reevaluate his logic and start thinking about the big picture.

  11. In my opinion, anyone who supports anything Confederate is a traitor and a seditionist. They value and support an enemy of the United States( yeah yeah it was a long time ago, but you get my drift ). FWIW, I don’t see any other countries proudly celebrating enemy armies.

    • This position is quite naive of the history of various military commanders since the Civil War. You really should consider more carefully how various military leaders in America’s more recent past (pick various persons from WW2, for example) thought highly of certain Confederate leaders and embraced various aspects of what they represented as men and combat commanders. The result proves to be quite contrary to your position. It doesn’t take a whole lot to prove that Confederate military commanders have ultimately been the inspiration for various US commanders who have been anything but trairos and seditionists.

  12. Interesting observations and discussion. The Texas holiday dates to 1931. In 1973 it combined R. E. Lee and J Davis’ birthdays and it is always celebrated on Jan. 19th. I’m guessing that none of the commenters were in the five hour hearing, none are Texans, none have actually read the bill, none know Jacob Hale or Rep Howard. So you don’t know the purpose of the bill and you cannot begin to understand the context of the quotes in the article. I leave you with the last quote from my comments to the committee.
    “Every record has been destroyed or falsified. Every book rewritten. Every picture has been repainted. Every statute and street building has been renamed. Every date has been altered. And the process is continuing, day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which THE PARTY is always right” George Orwell, 1984

    • Fortunately, we know from using historical sources written by the people alive in 1860/61 why there was a Civil War and what happened. Therefore, we can remove the artificial lost cause history that was put in place by white supremacists and replace it with one that is based upon factual evidence. If some people want to glorify the cause of slavery and the traitors to the United States of America they are free to do so, but their version of history does not involve the use of facts.

    • That Orwell quote is actually much more applicable to the “lost cause”/Dunning School historical narrative of the Civil War. I think it’s ironic that you use it in this context.

  13. I do not believe we are witnessing the end on Confederate Heritage because heritage is such a vague term. It is also something that resides in the hearts and minds of people and may very well be around as long as there are people alive to give it life. I believe, rather, that we are witnessing the last days of lost cause mythology being played out in the shrill and often illogical behavior of a vocal minority.

    • I agree. Much of what I am tracking when I make such observations is the celebration of- or narrow focus on Confederate heritage (the Lost Cause) on an institutional level. That has gone through a radical shift throughout the nation, including the South. Groups like the Virginia Flaggers, SCV, and UDC can and will continue to promote their preferred narrative of the past, but it will no longer receive the level of legitimacy that it once did within public institutions, including local and state government.

      Hope that helps to clarify my thinking.

      • Thanks for the clarification and I agree 100%.

        I think these groups will get evermore desperate for attention in the coming years as their narritaves fades from the national memory. One such flagging group has a protest planned at Mississippi State University this May at the Grant Presidential Library. I’m not sure what they want to accomplish other than to get attention. … Everyone loves a circus.

  14. One such flagging group has a protest planned at Mississippi State University this May at the Grant Presidential Library. I’m not sure what they want to accomplish other than to get attention.

    They do seem to conflate spectacle with accomplishment.

  15. Hey dick and Levin,I guess both of you are the northern crew?Talk about the South all you want.Their we’re laws being broke in the Yankee ranks.What does burning and raping women and innocent children have to do with war?As the mad man Sherman did.You called my ancestors “dirt farmers”.Did any of your Jewish ancestors fight in the war of northern agression?I doubt it.You seem to be a good writer.But all that don’t mean anything if your a hater of the South.To me your just out to glorify the north.But as i stated earlier you can’t change or dishonor the valiant men that fought for the confederacy.Have you ever doubt for your country Levin?

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