So, in addition to having trouble accessing my blog yesterday the news feed that I use to track stories related to Civil War memory is clogged with articles about the Brad Paisley – LL Cool J controversy. I’m not sure which is worse. I don’t have anything insightful to say about the song other than that the music and lyrics are both the work of amateurs. To be honest, it seems to be much to do about nothing.
On the other hand, I got nothing but props for Leslie Harris of Orange, Texas who asked the city council to consider resolutions and ordinances that would block a planned Confederate veterans memorial that includes a flag just off the interstate. Harris argues that, in fact, this is not a veterans memorial, but a Confederate flag memorial. She also offers some comments about the appropriateness of publicly acknowledging Confederate History Month and in the process reminds the audience that white Southern attitudes about the Confederate past are complex.
How do I know this? Fold3 is offering free access to all of its Confederate records during the month of April, which happens to be Confederate History Month. Well, it’s CHM in the few places that still acknowledge it. Check out the press release from the Georgia Division SCV.
So much is portrayed by Hollywood today that Georgia and the South were evil; when, in reality, the South was the most peaceful, rural, and Christian part of America before war and Reconstruction destroyed the pastoral way of life here. April gives us a chance to celebrate the positive things about our Southern heritage and culture, as well as a chance to learn from the political dangers that once led to a deep division in America over the role of the federal government in people’s individual lives.
I think it’s great that Fold3 is making it possible for ‘everyone t0 be his or her own historian.’ That said, I am also thankful that hospitals don’t invite the general public into their operating rooms to give surgery a try. Now get in there and find me some black Confederate soldiers for my book.
Are you a curious person, and obsessed with history? Can you recite facts inside and out, and name-drop (and even date-drop) with the best of them? Do your friends at trivia night, dare we say it, label you as the history buff? Maybe you’re not a full-blown “buff” but if you like history and get psyched at the idea of even visiting a museum, or actually read those placards on your tour, then we want to meet you…virtually for now though.
It goes without saying that Civil War enthusiasts occupy a unique place along the history buff spectrum. For this show to have any chance of success they are going to need at least one and perhaps three participants from this quarter. This morning I tweeted the announcement and John Hennessy quickly responded with a suggestion, which I am in complete agreement with:
A number of my Civil War peeps on Facebook are passing around a Comedy Central skit about the Civil War, which I posted here a few years back. To return the favor I give you another classic from Saturday Night Live. Not surprisingly, I love the reference to the camp servant, who makes it into the picture. “He’s been a big help.” Enjoy.