The Definitive Civil War Remembrance
April 12, 2011 Leave a comment
Hey, everybody. Want to know what still, to this day, blows my mind?
Politically correct minded Americans go about this type of event with lots of hand-wringing and cringing. Shifty eyes darting about, looking to ensure no one takes offense. But those on the ground celebrating the 150th year since the siege of Ft. Sumter began shouldn’t cause as much consternation as some Americans may think.
For a more expansive answer on the Civil War and remembrance. Perhaps check out Ken Burns‘ amazing documentary on the Civil War. Or Confederates in the Attic or This Republic of Suffering. Any of those works should set clear in your mind why people still do the work of remembering.
NPR has been proclaiming the landmark date for about a week now and hammering home quotes by Civil War re-enactors who are as decidedly hang-wringingly concerned about people’s feelings about Civil War Remembering as a Prozac-pumped politically-correct soccer mom is about avoiding critiques of racism.
I get why, perhaps you get why, too. Some of us still remember the fight over S.C. flying the Confederate Flag over their Capitol or even the I-4 and I-75 junction that had (I don’t know where it’s gone) a Greyhound Bus-sized Rebel Battle Flag just footsteps from the Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue exit.
So, what I’m saying, do these images and memories evoke only slavery? Then maybe check out the above works – if for no other reason than to listen to Shelby Foote or Gore Vidal or read a book that no human can read without shedding painful tears of compassionate understanding and beautiful humanity.
And lest I neglect my duty. Also read St. Petersburg, Fla. resident, Charles B. Dew’s Apostles of Disunion. No work makes more clear Southern proto-Confederate officials irrational fears of race war and mixed-blooded marriages which they powerfully argued across the South in order to turn states over to J. Davis’ team. A very short book that undeniably shows slavery – via fears of racial integration – as the root cause of Disunion.