A Letter to the Board of Education: Yuba County

To: Yuba County Board of Education
935 14 St.
Marysville, CA 95901

From: Neal Ross

Re: Lindhurst High Students

I have no idea why this happens, but every so often, on a Wednesday, the students of Lindhurst High are let out of school early. This only concerns me because they get out of school at the same time I leave for work, so I have to be extra careful driving down the road as they are apt to cross the street without regards to oncoming traffic.

However, yesterday as I was waiting at the stop sign at the corner of McGowan Parkway and Evelyn Drive, four African American students began pointing wildly at my truck and at me. One of them, not so discreetly I might add, raised his middle finger in salute to me, (if you get my drift).

Now I’m not going to lose any sleep over some teenaged kid flipping me the bird, but it is what upset him enough to give me the finger is what bothers me. I have, on the rear window of my truck, a sticker depicting the St. Andrews Cross; otherwise known as the Confederate Battle Flag, and I’m pretty sure that is what upset these young kids.

It saddens me that society has indoctrinated the youth, and many adults, to believe that this flag represents racism, slavery and prejudice. It angers me that you, as educators, have not taught them the truth about that flag, or about the history of slavery in America.

I raised my son in this area with him attending Johnson Park Elementary School, then Yuba Gardens Middle School, and then finally graduating from Lindhurst High in 2009. I made it a point to attend every function, especially the open houses so that I could get to know his teachers, and what they were teaching my son.

When it came time for my son to study civics, I asked his teacher certain questions regarding the curriculum; would he be discussing this, would he be talking about that, etc. etc. He shocked me by saying that I should be teaching his course because I obviously knew more about the subject matter than he did.

That was 12 years ago, and I’ve learned a whole lot more in those 12 years. I can also imagine how, due to political correctness, how the course curriculum has been altered to fit modern stereotypes and hide the truth from those whose minds are most yearning for it.

I can understand why those young kids got so upset with that image on my truck, even though I know the truth about what that flag stands for. To them that image is offensive because that is what they have been taught; by both society and you people who call yourselves educators. Unfortunately what they have been taught is a lie.

Slavery was a blot upon our nation’s history; I won’t deny that. But those who fought for the Confederacy in the Civil War weren’t fighting to keep their slaves; hell, most of them didn’t own any slaves to begin with. Sure, slavery, and the continued attempts by Northerners to interfere with it in the South, may have been among the reasons that led some of the Southern States to secede but they were not the reason the Civil War was fought – not by a long shot.

The first 7 States seceded from the Union in rapid fire, beginning with the secession of South Carolina on December 20, 1860. But the last four, Virginia, Arkansas, North Carolina and Tennessee did not secede until Abraham Lincoln called for an army of 75,000 volunteers to put down the rebellion in the Cotton States. They joined the Confederacy not to keep their slaves, but because they would not take up arms to subjugate and oppress their neighboring States.

That is why the Civil War was fought, because the Confederate States were defending their right to leave a Union they had voluntary given their consent to become a part of. They felt they were within their rights to leave this Union as easily as they had joined it and that when Lincoln called for troops to invade their sovereign territory it was an act of war on the part of the Lincoln Administration, and they were within their rights to defend themselves.

That was the Civil War, a war between a people who sought independence from a government they believed had become oppressive, and that government who sought to keep them in the Union by force. Had Lincoln simply let the South leave the Union in peace there would have been no Civil War, and had there been no Civil War there would have been no Confederate Battle Flag. So the flag DOES NOT represent slavery or prejudice as so many have been led to believe.

Lincoln himself, at least in the early years of that conflict, didn’t care about ending slavery in America; he felt since it was legal under the Constitution he had no legal authority to end it; and he made that point clear numerous times. In fact, in his Inaugural Address he references a proposed constitutional amendment that would have made slavery permanent in the United States, “I understand a proposed amendment to the Constitution—which amendment, however, I have not seen—has passed Congress, to the effect that the Federal Government shall never interfere with the domestic institutions of the States, including that of persons held to service. To avoid misconstruction of what I have said, I depart from my purpose not to speak of particular amendments so far as to say that, holding such a provision to now be implied constitutional law, I have no objection to its being made express and irrevocable.”

This amendment Lincoln referred to, had it been passed, would have become the 13th Amendment; which is somewhat ironic because the 13th Amendment we know now ended slavery, not made it permanent. However, had your history teachers been doing their jobs they would have taught their students about this proposed Corwin Amendment which was an effort by the Congress to make slavery permanent if the Southern States would just stay in the Union.

That’s how desperate to keep the Union together the North was; that they would make slavery permanent and irrevocable if the South would just stop with the secessionist movement. Apparently, since the Southern States kept seceding, slavery was NOT the reason they were attempting to leave the Union; otherwise had it been the reason they would have just ratified the amendment and saved a lot of bloodshed.

Lincoln’s war policy is best explained in a letter he wrote to Horace Greeley in 1862, in which he says, “I would save the Union. I would save it the shortest way under the Constitution. The sooner the national authority can be restored; the nearer the Union will be “the Union as it was.” If there be those who would not save the Union, unless they could at the same time save slavery, I do not agree with them. If there be those who would not save the Union unless they could at the same time destroy slavery, I do not agree with them. My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or to destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that. What I do about slavery, and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union; and what I forbear, I forbear because I do not believe it would help to save the Union.”

But that isn’t taught to our youth either; only that Lincoln was the great emancipator who ended slavery. I wonder, do your textbooks contain the text of the Emancipation Proclamation? Do they mention that it did not free a single slave in any Union controlled territory? Do your history instructors teach their students that after Lincoln introduced his Emancipation Proclamation that many Union soldiers deserted the Union Army; with some fleeing to Canada…because freeing the slaves is not why they signed up to fight against the Confederacy; saving the Union was. Do your history teachers teach that there were riots in the streets of some northern cities, such as New York City, after Lincoln introduced his Emancipation Proclamation; and that Northern blacks came under attack by Northern Whites?

Of course not, none of this is taught because it doesn’t fit the politically correct narrative you people want our kids to grow up believing. But it is all truthful and easily verifiable if one would but do a bit of research instead taking for granted that what you guys are teaching them is the truth, and the whole truth.

I understand that the issue of slavery is controversial, and divisive, but as educators you should rise above that and attempt to introduce the truth so that our children, and their children, can rise above the divisiveness that is an enduring legacy of the practice of holding people of one race in bondage to another.

You do know that Thomas Jefferson wanted to free the slaves long before the Civil War…don’t you? While he owned slaves, he felt the practice was a violation of the very rights he and his fellow countrymen sought to secure for themselves against a tyrannical British government.

Jefferson railed against slavery in his original draft of the Declaration of Independence, which was later edited out by the Committee of Five because they felt many of the Southern States would not vote for independence with such controversial wording in the document. Jefferson’s wording stated, “…he has waged cruel war against human nature itself, violating it’s most sacred rights of life & liberty in the persons of a distant people who never offended him, captivating & carrying them into slavery in another hemisphere.”

Yet Jefferson was a realist as well, meaning that he knew that once a people had endured slavery there would forever be lingering resentments and animosities between those whose ancestors had been held in bondage and their captors. In his Notes on the State of Virginia Jefferson writes, “It will probably be asked, Why not retain and incorporate the blacks into the state, and thus save the expense of supplying, by importation of white settlers, the vacancies they will leave? Deep rooted prejudices entertained by the whites; ten thousand recollections, by the blacks, of the injuries they have sustained; new provocations; the real distinctions which nature has made; and many other circumstances, will divide us into parties, and produce convulsions, which will probably never end but in the extermination of the one or the other race.”

Jefferson favored colonization of the slaves after they had been taught to become self-sufficient. He proposed educating them and finding a suitable location where they could begin to establish a colony of their own, free of their former oppressors. While this may sound radical, racist even, it is also the position which was held by Lincoln for a long time. Lincoln also supported the deportation and colonization of the slaves, and in 1862 he met with a congregation of freed black clergymen and asked them to help him in generating support amongst the other blacks for his plan.

From the minutes of this historic meeting we read, “Having all been seated, the President, after a few preliminary observations, informed them that a sum of money had been appropriated by Congress, and placed at his dispositions for the purpose of aiding the colonization in some country of the people, or a portion of them, of African descent, thereby making it his duty, as it had been for long time his inclination, to favor that cause; and why, he asked, should the people of your race be colonized, and where? Why should they leave this country? This is, perhaps, the first question for proper consideration. You and we are different races. We have between us a broader difference than exists between almost any two other races. Whether it is right or wrong I need not discuss, but this physical difference is a great disadvantage to us both, as I think your race suffer very greatly, many of them by living among us, while ours suffer from your presence. In a word we suffer on each side. If this is admitted, it affords a reason at least why we should be separated.”

Not quite the image of the Great Emancipator that is taught in school, is it? But that’s just the beginning of the lie that is taught about Lincoln and his stance on slavery and the black people in this country.

I’ll bet that your history teachers do not dare mention the debates between Lincoln and Stephen Douglas for the presidency. As is the custom today, contenders for the presidency would hold public debates, although theirs weren’t televised for the whole country to see, in which they discussed the issues and their positions on them.

It was in the fourth such debate between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas that Lincoln said the following, “While I was at the hotel to—day, an elderly gentleman called upon me to know whether I was really in favor of producing a perfect equality between the negroes and white people. While I had not proposed to myself on this occasion to say much on that subject, yet as the question was asked me I thought I would occupy perhaps five minutes in saying something in regard to it. I will say then that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races, —that I am not nor ever have been in favor of making voters or jurors of negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people; and I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races which I believe will forever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And inasmuch as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I as much as any other man am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race.”

Oh my, we can’t have such racist comments being taught our children – it might tarnish the image of the former president; whom we currently rank as among one of the best this nation has ever produced! But as John Adams said in his defense of the British soldiers accused of murder for the Boston Massacre, “Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.”

I could go on, and on, and on even more about how the lies being taught about Abraham Lincoln and his war of aggression against the South had nothing to do with providing freedom and equality for the slaves, but I fear I have already stretched your patience. I do, however, wish to make one final point.

I do not know this information because I was taught it in school…I was not. I know this information because I sought out the truth for myself; and have been seeking out the truth about the founding of this country and the establishment of our system of government for nearly two decades. I do not blame you as educators, per se, as this indoctrination has been going on for years and years. I only wish to bring to your attention the fact that there are some of us out here, who pay for you to teach our children the truth, who realize that you are doing them a grave disservice by lying to them, or at least providing a one sided and biased view of that period of American history known as the Civil War.

So, in closing I’d like to leave you with a few comments from Major General Patrick Cleburne of the Confederate Army, who warned of how the history of that great conflict would be recorded, “Every man should endeavor to understand the meaning of subjugation before it is too late… It means the history of this heroic struggle will be written by the enemy; that our youth will be trained by Northern schoolteachers; will learn from Northern school books their version of the war; will be impressed by the influences of history and education to regard our gallant dead as traitors, and our maimed veterans as fit objects for derision… It is said slavery is all we are fighting for, and if we give it up we give up all. Even if this were true, which we deny, slavery is not all our enemies are fighting for. It is merely the pretense to establish sectional superiority and a more centralized form of government, and to deprive us of our rights and liberties.”

You see, had you been doing your job, educating our youth to the real history…the truth…then they would not hold the Confederate Battle Flag in such low esteem. Rather, they would cheer it on as it represents the same thing that those who affixed their signatures to the Declaration of Independence did – freedom from an oppressive government.

But that’s not your job is it, to teach our children the truth. Your job is best summed up by something George Carlin once said, “They don’t want well informed, well educated people capable of critical thinking. They’re not interested in that . . . that doesn’t help them. That’s against their interests. That’s right. They don’t want people who are smart enough to sit around a kitchen table and think about how badly they’re getting fucked by a system that threw them overboard 30 fuckin’ years ago. They don’t want that. You know what they want? They want obedient workers . . . Obedient workers, people who are just smart enough to run the machines and do the paperwork. And just dumb enough to passively accept all these increasingly shittier jobs with the lower pay, the longer hours, the reduced benefits, the end of overtime and vanishing pension that disappears the minute you go to collect it…”

And I’m sorry if the language offends you, but that’s just how Carlin spoke. Besides, the truth often is offensive to those who make a living out of hiding it from others…such as yourselves. If you ask me, you don’t run public schools, you run public indoctrination centers. And you wonder why so many people today are opting for home schooling? Go figure, huh…

And now that I have rattled your cage a bit, I bid you a very pleasant day…

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2 Responses to A Letter to the Board of Education: Yuba County

  1. Your Brother says:

    The Saint Andrew’s Cross is actually the Scottish flag emblem.

  2. Br'er Rabbit says:

    Not so fast there skippy.

    A saltire, also called Saint Andrew’s Cross or the crux decussata,[1] is a heraldic symbol in the form of a diagonal cross, like the shape of the letter X in Roman type. The word comes from the Middle French sautoir, Middle Latin saltatoria (“stirrup”).[2]

    From its use as field sign, the saltire came to be used in a number of flags, in the 16th century for Scotland and Burgundy, in the 18th century also as the ensign of the Russian Navy, and for Ireland. Notable 19th-century usage includes some of the flags of the Confederate States of America.

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