Why do people believe myths about the Confederacy? Because our textbooks and monuments are wrong.

  • metta

    Posts: 39139

    Jul 01, 2015 4:33 PM GMT
    Why do people believe myths about the Confederacy? Because our textbooks and monuments are wrong.

    "Teaching or implying that the Confederate states seceded for states’ rights is not accurate history. It is white, Confederate-apologist history. It bends — even breaks — the facts of what happened. Like other U.S. history textbooks, “Journey” needs to be de-Confederatized. So does the history test we give to immigrants who want to become U.S. citizens. Item 74 asks, “Name one problem that led to the Civil War.” It then gives three acceptable answers: “slavery, economic reasons, and states’ rights.” If by “economic reasons” it means issues about tariffs and taxes, which most people infer, then two of its three “correct answers” are wrong! No other question on this 100-item test has more than one “right” answer. The reason is not because the history is unclear, but because neo-Confederates still wielded considerable influence in our culture and our Congress until quite recently, when a mass of politicians rushed to declare the Confederate flag unsuitable for display on government grounds."


    http://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2015/07/01/why-do-people-believe-myths-about-the-confederacy-because-our-textbooks-and-monuments-are-wrong/
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    Jul 01, 2015 5:10 PM GMT
    “Those who don't know history are doomed to repeat it.”
    ― Edmund Burke

    I guess this means the South will rise again...and fall again just as quickly as it did last time. icon_wink.gif
  • bobbobbob

    Posts: 2812

    Jul 01, 2015 9:38 PM GMT
    This comment is not a justification for the of the secession of the southern states from the Union or for anything else.

    It's to point out that the cited article is the one guilty of trying to rewrite history and the author's own words confirm that by falsely asserting in his first paragraph: "As soon as Confederates laid down their arms, some picked up their pens and began to distort what they had done, and why. Their resulting mythology went national a generation later and persists.... and the public believes that the war was mainly fought over states’ rights."
    The last line of article written by a sociologist, not a historian is, "De-Confederatizing the United States won’t end white supremacy, but it will be a momentous step in that direction." he admits removing their monuments and flags will do next to nothing then says it's the right thing to do... Pure nonsense. All that will be accomplished if he has his way is making even more people recalcitrant.

    The author is a sociologist, not a historian. He's painted a simplistic picture of events that led up to several things that led up to the Cvil war in order to do exactly what he accuses others of doing; revising history for to fit a political agenda. He's also guilty of applying his 21st century liberal academic sensibilities to events and times where they did not exist.

    In the entire article he doesn't mention the 10th amendment by name but does use the phrase "States Rights" which has grown to be an ugly "southern thing" in the minds of many.

    The complete Tenth Amendment reads:
    "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people." Colorado and other states have exercised the 10th amendment to legalize marijuana.

    To show the northern states misrepresented vehemence against slavery and equality for blacks, here's some facts the author overlooked:

    **** Before the civil war northern states had already exercised their 10th amendment rights to ban slavery either by legislation or state charters and constitutions when they were formed. None granted civil rights to former slaves or freedmen.

    **** In the two decades after the civil war many of those same states voted down proposed laws to to give former slaves equality under the laws and again, many exercised the 10th amendment and passed laws limiting the rights of blacks under the laws that continued well into the middle of the 20th century.

    **** Pennsylvania is noted in history books as being the first to exercise 10th Amendement/States Rights to ban slavery in 1780 with the Gradual Emancipation Act. Eight years later they amended it to allow the sales of slaves into slave states as well as to sending escaped slaves back to their owners.

    **** Following the lead of the British in the Revolutionary War, Lincoln penned the Emancipation Proclamation new years day 1863 hoping to incite them to rebel against the Confederacy. Slaves in Slaves still held in Tennessee, Kentucky, Kansas, New Jersey, Delaware, West Virginia, Maryland, Missouri, Washington, D.C., had to wait for their freedom until December 1865.

    **** During the first phase of Reconstruction Andrew Johnson refused to consider giving suffrage to freedmen and insisted it was a matter of States' Rights (10th amendment) and not the business of the federal government.

    It didn't start with the Peale Banking Act in England that that required gold reserves for their currency but it set in motion things that were to separate northern and states that created regional enmity. The act made it more profitable for cotton states to sell the England than the cloth mills of New England. The Peale Act also set off a financial crisis with one effect being cotton fabrics from England became cheaper than those of Northern States. However the effects of the this were much wider ranging and set off a financial panic across the northern states while leaving the south almost unaffected. (look up Panic of 1957)

    One of the last acts of President Buchanan before Lincoln took office was to sign the Republican backed Morill Act (as southern states were in the process of seceding) with tariffs that would have severely hurt the economy of the south while favoring the north. During the war tariffs hurt the economies of the western states and territories it caused people there to sympathize with the Confederacy over the Union.

    There was also the super majorities of anti-slavery Republicans who'd taken office before Lincoln that was part of the cause of the civil war.

    Yes slavery was the big issue but following the Constitution and several Supreme Court rulings the south the south was legally as within their rights to attempt to continue slavery as were other states exercising their own 10th amendment rights to abolish it.

    There's no question about slavery being morally wrong. There's no doubt about equal rights and desegregation either.... 150 years after the fact.





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    Jul 01, 2015 9:59 PM GMT
    bobbobbob saidYes slavery was the big issue but following the Constitution and several Supreme Court rulings the south the south was legally as within their rights to attempt to continue slavery as were other states exercising their own 10th amendment rights to abolish it.


    So, slavery.

    South Carolina seceded BEFORE Lincoln took office. South Carolina demanded that the Federal government prevail AGAINST states' rights (the rights of the northern states to abolish slavery--and NOT return their runaways).

    Many southern states were originally opposed to secession, in that much of the economy and the Federal government was strongly beneficial to the southern states up until Lincoln was elected. Lincoln would have probably lost if the Democrats hadn't fractured over these disagreements. United, the Democrats would have likely won--and would have likely successfully blocked any attempt at emancipation.

    But then, South Carolina fucked it up for them. Following suit, other states began to declare their intentions to secede. Over fucking slavery.
  • FRE0

    Posts: 4865

    Jul 02, 2015 5:45 PM GMT
    metta8 saidWhy do people believe myths about the Confederacy? Because our textbooks and monuments are wrong.

    "Teaching or implying that the Confederate states seceded for states’ rights is not accurate history. It is white, Confederate-apologist history. It bends — even breaks — the facts of what happened. Like other U.S. history textbooks, “Journey” needs to be de-Confederatized. So does the history test we give to immigrants who want to become U.S. citizens. Item 74 asks, “Name one problem that led to the Civil War.” It then gives three acceptable answers: “slavery, economic reasons, and states’ rights.” If by “economic reasons” it means issues about tariffs and taxes, which most people infer, then two of its three “correct answers” are wrong! No other question on this 100-item test has more than one “right” answer. The reason is not because the history is unclear, but because neo-Confederates still wielded considerable influence in our culture and our Congress until quite recently, when a mass of politicians rushed to declare the Confederate flag unsuitable for display on government grounds."


    http://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2015/07/01/why-do-people-believe-myths-about-the-confederacy-because-our-textbooks-and-monuments-are-wrong/


    This is basically an argument over semantics. We know that slavery was the real issue. Technically the war was over states' rights, but the particular right in question was the right to own slaves. And, the reason slave owners wanted to continue to own slaves was economic. There is no need for hair-splitting, i.e., homing in on one of the above and claiming that it alone was the reason for the establishment of the Confederacy. One might as well argue, like monks in the Middle Ages, about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.