“Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every
picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been
renamed, every date has been altered. And the process is continuing
day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists
except an endless present in which the Party is always right.”
A few days ago I told a dear friend of mine that I was born a Southerner but had the misfortune of having been born in the wrong State. During my 3 enlistments in the U.S. Air Force I had the opportunity to travel to various regions of this vast country of ours; although thankfully I was never stationed anyplace where it got really cold in the winter. Of all the places I was stationed at, or sent on Temporary Duty (TDY) to, I always felt at home in the South; more so than when I was back home in California, in fact. On the other hand, when I was stationed in places outside what we consider to be Southern States I always felt like I was an outsider; someone who didn’t belong there but was treated graciously; while they were secretly wishing that I’d just go back to California where I belonged.
I could never explain why I felt so comfortable in the South, and why I seemed to be accepted among the Southerners, while some from my home State of California hated it down there, and were not accepted to the extent I was. I’m not saying those who lived in the South weren’t warm and friendly towards those who hadn’t been born on Southern soil, they were; but it was the same politeness you would give a total stranger; a tourist. For me it was different, I felt a kinship with them; and I think they may have felt that way too; for I always seemed to ‘fit in’ down there as if I had been born there.
It wasn’t until I began studying the history of the Civil War that I began to understand why.
Prior to all this anti all things Southern madness that is sweeping across the land I’d see a lot of people displaying the Southern Cross, (or Confederate Battle Flag for all you unenlightened folks), and it would be something cool they’d wear on a T-shirt or a hat, a sign of rebellion against authority, or even worse, as a symbol denoting white supremacy. I never felt any of those things when I gazed upon that flag; instead I felt a sense of yearning that permeated every cell of my body; as if that flag were calling to my very soul. That was another thing I couldn’t understand until I began studying the history of the Civil War.
To me that flag represents honor, bravery, loyalty to a cause and a way of life that was under attack at the time by forces that did not understand those who bore it, and didn’t care either. Although I believe the downfall of America began when the Constitution was ratified in 1789, I believe the final nail in the coffin was hammered in with the defeat of the Confederacy in 1865; for it was then that the principles enshrined in the Declaration of Independence were laid to rest forever. It’s all been downhill ever since.
Those who wore the uniform of the Confederacy, and who bore its standard in battle, stood for something pure, something noble; and it wasn’t the perpetuation of slavery either; that is just a lie you have been taught to by those who claim to be providing you with an education. You need to get this through your thick skulls; even if it means drilling a hole in them and pouring it in with a funnel, slavery was LEGAL under the Constitution, and the Supreme Court had upheld that fact in Dred Scott v Sanford in 1857…THREE YEARS BEOFRE THE CIVIL WAR BEGAN!
So even though slavery was an evil institution, it was legal under the Constitution. If that be the case, then weren’t those who fought in defense of that institution fighting to uphold and defend the Constitution, while those who fought against them were the ones who were actually in rebellion against it?
What the South fought for was for the ability of a State to regulate its own internal affairs without outside interference, and for newly admitted States to be able to decide for themselves whether or not they would allow slavery to become an institution within their borders; something radical Abolitionist/Exclusionist Northerners refuse to allow them to do. Not to mention the fact that the South was being drained of its vast wealth by burdensome tariffs that sucked the lifeblood from them to be used to subsidize Northern business interests.
The defeat of the Confederacy forever laid to rest the principle espoused by Jefferson in his first Inaugural Address, “…a wise and frugal Government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government…” Upon its grave was erected the government sought by men like Alexander Hamilton; one that was used by and controlled by wealthy industrialists, bankers, and business interests; it is no longer a government of the people, by the people, and for the people; no matter what Lincoln said it was.
So while my education may be incomplete, I think I can say that I understand both the heritage and the history of the South, and I feel a kinship; an affinity towards it. It is therefore with an overwhelming sense of dread and dismay that I watch as all things related to the history and heritage of the South are torn down, defaced, and denigrated by people who don’t have a clue as to what they represent. It makes me physically ill to watch it, yet I am powerless to get people to see the truth; that no matter how much they disagree with what those things represent, you simply can’t erase history by toppling a few monuments and hiding from the truth. All I can say is that George Orwell must be rolling in his grave as a modern day Ministry of Truth rewrites and perverts the history of the South and their just cause.
It is with those sentiments/feelings in mind that I watched the mid-day news on my local NBC affiliate yesterday, (something I should know better to not do), that I saw the Botox Queen herself, Nancy Pelosi, stand and say that the monuments in the Capital building showing the likeness of men like Robert E. Lee and Jefferson Davis should be removed; for their represented treason. I was so incensed when I heard those words that I’m surprised my increased blood pressure did not cause blood to pour forth from my eyes and nose. I immediately got online and sent the Speaker of the House a piece of my mind on that. Yet I feel the topic is worthy of a bit more discussion.
I think treason is one of those words that is bandied about by people who don’t truly understand what it means. Article 3, Section 3 of the Constitution states, “Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort.” The dictionary defines it as: the crime of betraying one’s country, especially by attempting to kill the sovereign or overthrow the government.
Did the South levy war against the North? Aside from the shots fired upon Fort Sumter, (which was in response to a provocation by Lincoln’s attempt to resupply it), the only ones levying war against the other was when Lincoln raised an army to invade the South. The South acted in self-defense; as would any sovereign nation when foreign troops invaded them to subvert and subjugate their legitimately established system of government.
Was the South considered enemies to the North? Well according to the speeches of certain key Republicans prior to the Civil War, the Southern Democrats were already enemies whose beliefs and culture were under attack by them. It would seem to me, (but then again I actually study and think about history), that the South was the one that had seen war levied against it; militarily, economically, and politically.
In a speech given to the Confederate Congress, April 29, 1861, Jefferson Davis spoke the following words, “We feel that our cause is just and holy; we protest solemnly in the face of mankind that we desire peace at any sacrifice save that of honor and independence; we seek no conquest, no aggrandizement, no concession of any kind from the States with which we were lately confederated; all we ask is to be let alone; that those who never held power over us shall not now attempt our subjugation by arms. This we will, this we must, resist to the direst extremity. The moment that this pretension is abandoned the sword will drop from our grasp, and we shall be ready to enter into treaties of amity and commerce that cannot but be mutually beneficial. So long as this pretension is maintained, with a firm reliance on that Divine Power which covers with its protection the just cause, we will continue to struggle for our inherent right to freedom, independence, and self-government.”
Do those sound like the words of someone who sought to become an enemy to the North, or one who sought to topple their government? No, they do not. In fact, they sound quite similar to what the Colonists wanted from England when they issued the Declaration of Independence; the ability to determine for themselves as to how they should be governed. Is it so difficult for people to understand things these days? The Declaration of Independence states that governments derive their just authority from the consent of the people, and that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of the ends for which it was established, that it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it.
The compact which was the Constitution was an agreement, not between the government and the governed; rather it was an agreement between the people of the sovereign and independent States to form a system of government. Government was created by the consent of those living in the States, and it continues to exist only because people continue to consent to its authority.
Three States had included, in their Declarations of Ratifications, clauses that said they retained the authority to revoke their consent to the government they were consenting to; Rhode Island, New York, and Virginia. If that authority was present for those three states, it was present for all of them; for the government being established could not have more power than those who created it; lest you want to also state openly and candidly that it is superior to the will of those who created it; i.e. tyrannical. After all, what other word would you call if it a people, or any portion thereof, were left without recourse if the government they had participated in establishing sought to subvert, subjugate, and oppress them?
Even Lincoln himself said as much back in 1848 when he spoke to following words before the House of Representatives, “Any people anywhere, being inclined and having the power, have the right to rise up and shake off the existing government and form a new one that suits them better. This is a most valuable, most sacred right- a right which we hope and believe is to liberate the world. Nor is this right confined to cases in which the whole people of an existing government may choose to excercise it. Any portion of such people that can, may revolutionize and make their own, of so much territory as they inhabit.” (Source: Lincoln’s War With Mexico Speech, January 12, 1848)
If the Southern people only wanted to be free of a government they felt no longer represented them, if they only wanted to be left alone in peace to govern themselves, and if Jeff Davis was chosen to be the President of the government they sought to establish, why was he not tried for treason after the war ended; after all, he had been captured and held in federal prison for 2 years; so they had plenty of time to do so; if in fact he was guilty of it.
The reason they did not bring Davis to trial for treason is best explained by former Chief Justice Salmon P. Chase, “If you bring these [Confederate] leaders to trial it will condemn the North, for by the Constitution secession is not rebellion. Lincoln wanted Davis to escape, and he was right. His capture was a mistake. His trial will be a greater one.” Secession is merely the revocation of a sovereign state’s consent to the compact that bound them to the Union; much like the Declaration of Independence was an act of secession by the 13 British Colonies. Of course the government would seek to call them treasonous, for governments require subjects to govern, and if the people were given a choice to live with or without government, most would choose to live free of it. Well, that used to be so, I’m not so sure about people today.
That brings me to my final thought. This morning I read an article my friend has posted on his website The Federal Observer in regards to the pardoning of Jefferson Davis by President Jimmy Carter back in 1978. From what I’ve learned about Davis, and his time in federal confinement, (which is due to the fact that I have sought to learn more than what was taught to me in school), is that Davis must have rolled over in his grave when Carter issued his pardon.
A pardon is defined as the act of being forgiven for an offense. To his dying day Jefferson Davis never felt that the South had committed an offense; he felt that the law supported the right of a State to secede from a voluntary Union; that it was not, as Madam Botox said, treason.
During his time in federal confinement the subject of a pardon came up, and Davis was opposed to being pardoned; he wanted a public trial where he could lay out for all to see the justification for secession; for he knew that in a trial it would be held that secession was not treason. Let me repeat that, HE KNEW THAT IN A COURTROOM POPULAR OPINION WOULD HOLD THAT SECESSION WAS NOT TREASON!!!
Hell, when the Southern States seceded New York City considered seceding too, and joining the Confederacy; for they not only relied upon the cotton being sent to their textile mills from Southern Plantations, they also agreed with their justification for doing so. After all, New York was one of those 3 States that had included wording in their ratification statements saying that the people of a State could resume the powers of government they were agreeing to by their ratification of the Constitution, “That the Powers of Government may be reassumed by the People, whensoever it shall become necessary to their Happiness…” (Source: New York Declaration of Ratification, July 26, 1788)
I see all these monuments being torn down or defaced, I see how professional sporting institutions such as the NFL and NASCAR, and even the U.S. military with their considering renaming bases named after Confederate leaders, and all I can do is weep for the loss of history and the pandering to those who do not understand what they are doing to their country.
George Orwell, author of the classic novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, once said, “The most effective way to destroy people is to deny and obliterate their own understanding of their history.” All one has to do is to look at what is happening in this country to understand the truthfulness of that statement.
If political correctness and the feelings and emotions of the ignorant are to determine what is historically accurate, then we are doomed; because history can then be rewritten to suit the popular agenda, and it has lost its value as both a tool to learn from past mistakes, and as a remembrance of what ‘actually’ happened in our past.
I know it is futile in saying this, but I ask that people stop what they are doing, (destroying monuments, records, and the truth regarding our past), and think about what will happen to future generations when they have been denied access to the principles and beliefs their ancestors once held dear; what it meant to be an Ameri