It never ceases to amaze me of the extent to which readers get emotionally worked up about the videos I post on this site. Here are three videos that I’ve posted in the past. All of them led to heated discussion in the comments section here as well as on other sites.
Update: James Loewen responds…well…sort of.
Since Edward Sebesta recently came up in a previous post I decided to check out his blog earlier today. Some of you may remember that not too long ago Sebesta publicly declared that he would not accept an award from the Museum of the Confederacy for his co-edited book with James Loewen, titled The Confederate and Neo-Confederate Reader: The “Great Truth” about the “Lost Cause”, which had been submitted by their publisher for the Jefferson Davis Award. Why? According to Sebesta, the MOC’s mission is to further the”Neo-Confederate” agenda. By accepting their award Sebesta believes that he would be legitimizing the museum as a legitimate historical institution. Yes, this is quite bizarre, but it gets even better. At the time Sebesta promised that he would explain his stance in a more detailed essay, which is exactly what I came across at his blog today. The post includes a link to a 4-part essay that was published at the Black Commentator. I am going to leave it to you to read through as I simply do not have the patience to do it. It is an incredibly incoherent rant and as far as I can tell there is no indication that Sebesta has ever visited the MOC or talked with its museum staff.
Not too long ago I received an email from a public historian who works at a plantation site in South Carolina asking whether he should accept a speaking invitation from the Sons of Confederate Veterans:
This has got to be my favorite Civil War video. I’ve posted it before, but many of you who are relatively new to the blog have probably not seen it. It’s a classic. Enjoy.
Ethan Rafuse recently shared a writing assignment that he was given by “America’s Civil War” magazine to come up with a list of six Civil War generals that we “like to hate.”
Civil War buffs love to blame particular generals for lost battles and campaigns—McClellan, Bragg, McDowell, etc. Why do we like to hate them so much, and do they deserve it? Pick a couple from each side and examine what made them pariahs—and whether hindsight should rehabilitate their Images. Pick three from each side, 500 or so words on each, and a 500-word intro for about 3,500 words.
I guess the editor could have framed the question around major mistakes made in the field by Civil War generals, but the choice to inquire as to why some military figures engender such a visceral reaction in some is potentially interesting. Perhaps we should take one step back for a little perspective. Is there anything comparable in America’s other wars? Anyone out there hate Henry Knox, Winfield Scott, John J. Pershing, Omar Bradley, or William Westmoreland?