Rainbow Confederates Defend Their Southland

Please read the following carefully from a self-professed Rainbow Confederate:

I am getting tired of report to point out that race relations are and have always been good in the South becuse we deal on an individual basis with people rather than the “Group” as the Leftists do.the Marxist tactic of “racism” and simply point to the FBI Hate Crime Report to prove my points about the hateful Northern cities and their obsession with race and cultural segregation in their own world and the need to ignore their own problems and shortcomings.


It is this less than sure handling of history that opens the door to criticism of Rainbow Confederates as stuck in a fantasyland.

One View of the Legacy of Reconstruction

Here’s an interesting lesson in how one’s understanding of the past shapes one’s beliefs about the present, offered on the League of the South’s Facebook discussion page.

Most racial problems in the South during the twentieth century can be traced back to the so-called Reconstruction when Federal intrusion and Northern extremes, martial law, political corruption, and the excesses of the Republican Party, the Union League, and the Freedmen’s Bureau provoked reactions and attitudes that lasted for generations. Reconstruction laws and measures virtually eliminated the White vote and made illiterates the overwhelming majority vote in the South, and this enabled Carpetbaggers, Scalawags, and other radicals to take advantage of a bad situation, use and exploit freed slaves, and win elections with unrealistic and often unconstitutional (e.g., Ex Post Facto Laws) campaign promises, such as the promise of forty acres and a mule for every freed slave. It is ironic that so many today look to the Federal government to solve or alleviate racial problems that the Federal government caused or agitated.

The Plessy VS. Ferguson Decision of 1896 enunciated the doctrine of “separate but equal.” Making racial segregation the official federal policy for over fifty years ensured that federally mandated desegregation would provoke resentment and opposition, and the federal intrusions involved aroused the collective memory and defensiveness of White Southrons in general. Instead of the US Supreme Court being looked to as savior or an infallible authority Federal Judges should be held accountable.

The attempts of social engineers to change hearts through legislation and court orders are self-defeating. Leftist programs purported to promote racial harmony and racial equality have the opposite effect: Egalitarian socialism and Ex Post Facto Laws do not alleviate racial tensions or produce racial harmony but instead foster resentment and a we-versus-they complex. If you have a group of children and you give one child a stick and the right to hit the children who don’t do what he wants, in time the other children will submit and conform to the child with the stick while resentment and animosity increases; race cards have the same effect. It is futile to keep expecting humanist ideologies to achieve racial harmony.

One hopes that this time the folks at CivilWarTalk.com can figure out that I’m not the author of these remarks before they go off.

Michael Hill’s South

For those of you interested in such things, here’s Michael Hill’s address to this past weekend’s League of the South meeting in Alabama:

Dr. Hill elaborated on his vision on the League’s Facebook page:

The League of the South should have as it primary objective the preservation of our people—kith and kin—on their ancestral lands. Independence will do the South little good if we fail to preserve ourselves as a distinct people group inhabiting a certain piece of Creation. Once we secure our future as “the Southern people,” then, and only then, can we be about the business of gaining our independence. Therefore, we support a return to a society and civilization based on allegiance to kith and kin rather than to an impersonal state wedded to multiculturalism, diversity, tolerance, the rights of man, and other similar leftist abstractions. The leaders and the rank-and-file of our organization must be hardliners who insist that quite apart from political ideals, we take our stand in the historic South and for the people—white Southerners–who made the historic South what it is. The South is not a universal idea anymore than, say, Scotland, France, or Serbia. Instead, the South was and is a true nation built on the realities of place and kinship that we must revitalize if we are to survive and prosper.

Note … white southerners.

It’s rather challenging for people accused of being “rainbow Confederates” to claim that they side with the League when the League rejects their pretenses to repudiate racism; indeed, the League now thinks that exercise is simply nonsense:

If you are a rainbow, politically correct “Southerner” who worries about being called “racist,” “xenophobe,” or any other epithet thrown at us by the left, then you don’t belong here. This Facebook page is for truly unreconstructed Southern nationalists. If you fit the description above and are not open to change, then you need to go elsewhere. You are not among compatriots here.

This change in professed position seems to be in reaction to the outbursts of a few so-called “rainbow Confederates” this past weekend.

I think you should take these people at their word.

Is Connie Chastain a Rainbow Confederate?

This past weekend the League of the South decided to commemorate the sesquicentennial of the July 22 cabinet meeting in which Lincoln shared his thoughts on an emancipation proclamation by meeting themselves in their own facility in Alabama.  Judging from what we’ve heard on websites, blogs, and on several Facebook discussion groups, one major theme of the meeting, as emphasized by the president of the League of the South, Michael Hill, is that the League wants to eschew being politically correct and denounces what it calls “rainbow Confederates.”  Among those being charged with being a Rainbow Confederate obsessed by political correctness is none other than Connie Chastain, who spent whatever hours she had this past weekend that were not devoted to attacking me to doing battle with her foes on Facebook, her preferred field of battle (her blog has not been updated since June 18).

It’s not the first time Chastain has been so described.  Indeed, Hunter Wallace has been applying that label to her for some time.  What intrigues me about this recent debate is that to raise the question of whether Connie Chastain is a Rainbow Confederate (and what that term means) sheds some light into the internal dynamics of the relationship between “southern heritage,” southern nationalism, and white supremacy.

In one corner we have Hunter Wallace, who runs Occidental Dissent, as well as the folks at Southern Nationalist Network.  These folks favor a race-based white supremacist/separatist movement, and they make no bones about it (watch SNN squirm about this: Wallace has the courage of his convictions).  Wallace has no problem highlighting the white supremacist roots of the Confederacy.   Yes, these folks are interested in history, but they are more interested in achieving their goal, and in Wallace’s case, the new white republic need not be located in the area of the former Confederacy.

In a second corner we have the League of the South, which can’t quite make up its mind about how it wants to view issues of race.  Does it believe in white supremacy?  Perhaps.  Would its independent South exclude blacks?  I don’t believe so.  Why my uncertainty?  Because the League waffles a bit on these issues (having just changed its stance on the word “racism”).  That’s one reason why OD and SNN were so pleased by the events of last weekend … because they have not always been happy with the League’s seeming moderation (although I emphasize “seeming”) on such issues.  As for its understanding of history, the League is also interested in crafting a usable past to buttress its political positions.

And then we have the group denounced this past weekend by OD, SNN, and the League … the so-called Rainbow Confederates.  First of all, it’s important to understand that this is a label devised by people who want to lump together folks like the Virginia Flaggers, the Southern Heritage Preservation Group, and Chastain.  They describe the social views of these people in ways  that might make them sound as if they are welcome in polite society (or that they are the covert arm of the despicable antisouthern blogging movement, a label “invented” by the very people who now find themselves labelled by their critics who don’t see them as truly committed to the real Confederate cause.  Ah, irony).  According to these critics, the Rainbow Confederates are tolerant of racial differences, embrace “political correctness” (and thus are incorrect Confederates), and seek some sort of biracial southern future (multiracial seems to be too much of a reach: even Chastain still sees the world in black/white terms, which is surprising given that she resides in Florida).  The use of “rainbow” as a modifier is designed to tell the rest of us that this is a group that tolerates, even embraces difference: thus the interest for some in black Confederates or black supporters such as H. K. Edgerton or Virginia Flagger Karen Cooper.  And, as before, this group is interested in fabricating a heritage at odds with the historical record, largely to serve their own political beliefs.  They are not really interested in taking on OD, SNN, and so on, in part, I suspect, because they secretly believe much of what those groups espouse.

This is how it looks to an outsider … I’m sure insiders will pick away at this categorization and description, and we all welcome clarification in the interest of accuracy.

And so it falls to me to do something many of you who wallow in personalities (and thus miss the point) will find shocking: I agree with Connie Chastain.  She’s not a Rainbow Confederate.  She’s at best a white paternalist who rejects most forms of racial (and gender) equality, defends antiSemitic rantings, and has demonstrated an intolerance of sexual choices and lifestyles.  In short, she’s not tolerant at all: she reluctantly accepts what she has to accept.  She’s not alone among those who are being labeled Rainbow Confederates, but she’s someone whose views have been examined here in the past.  Her problem is that she, too, waffles, largely for appearance’s sake, and perhaps because she knows that she would further diminish her already limited readership if she was to be candid about her convictions.  If she had the courage of those convictions, I suspect she would not be targeted as she was (well, the truth is that last weekend it was Connie Chastain who instigated the fight on the League of the South’s Facebook page, so he presented herself as a rather easy target in true Chastain style, complete with charging everyone who disagreed with her as being a liar and answering questions with questions rather than defining her own position in her own words).

Chastain’s own muddled method of presentation and argument has allowed her critics to take her apart.  She’s not ready for prime time, and had mistaken a bit of cyberspace notoriety for real influence.  Yet she remains a figure of interest and amusement (as well as a useful example for people to make a point).  Wallace shared with us her expulsion from the League of the South’s Facebook group; Chastain responded that she’s been readmitted and had been in contact with Hill, who once highlighted his friendship with her.  That might give Wallace and SNN cause to pause.

UPDATE July 27, 2012:  Here’s what Michael Hill says in response to Chastain’s comment that she’s back in the League’s FB discussion group page:

Note: Despite what Simpson writes, Connie has not been allowed back on the League FB page. If she has, it was done without my knowledge and consent.


So, folks, I think we outsiders are wrong to place the emphasis on “rainbow” in “rainbow Confederate.”  It’s a modifier used to denote distance where in fact very little exists.  I’d emphasize the “Confederate” in the term as a reminder of just how much these groups have in common, even as they continue to disagree about the history of the Old South, slavery, and the Confederacy.  Even then, “Confederate” is a bit of a distortion, because in truth there is no Confederacy and there are no Confederates.  I believe “white supremacist” is more accurate.

As for what all this means for Confederate heritage groups (namely the Sons of Confederate Veterans and the United Daughters of the Confederacy), well, these folks might want to think before they get involved in this fracas, lest they prove their most devoted critics to be right after all.   And for the rest of us, well, this is another case study in the interplay between the past, history, memory, and heritage, as well as how people seek to craft a memory of the past to serve present concerns.

Robert E. Lee: Rainbow Confederate?

In light of this weekend’s debate over the future of the southern heritage/southern nationalist movement, featuring a denunciation of certain people as “rainbow Confederates” (this amuses me given the actual intolerance on matters of race, religion, and sexual preference offered by people such as the favorite pinata of rainbow-bashers, our own Connie Chastain), we might want to return to a moment of historical analysis offered by Andy Hall at The Civil War Monitor.

It’s always a favorite theme of some Confederate Romantics that Robert E. Lee detested slavery and accepted emancipation.  That this is not true doesn’t deter them a bit, because, after all, their version of “heritage” simply warps the historical record to serve present political agendas … which some people call “political correctness.”  Ah, the irony.

Enjoy Andy’s article.

The League of the South Versus “Rainbow Confederates”

Dr. Michael Hill talks to the Southern Nationalist Network about this year’s meeting of the League of the South.  It appears he finds “rainbow Confederates” objectionable.  Who these people are and what they believe deserve some elaboration, although rumor has it that some people claim that Connie Chastain is among their number.  Other than that, the interview is unexceptionable, including the attack on political correctness, without which such a comment would be incomplete.

If you want more, listen here.

I guess the best way to combat Rainbow Confederates is to embrace Fifty Shades of Gray.

A New Slogan for the “Southern Heritage” Movement?

Over at the gift that keeps on giving they’ve been discussing a proposal to come up with a new slogan for the “southern heritage” movement to replace “heritage, not hate.” As the original poster put it:

… I thought perhaps it is time for this group to come up with a better slogan for the Southern Heritage Movement.

Now that is not to say that I have anything against the old slogan: “Heritage Not Hate” since I agree with it and hold the truth of those worse close to my heart. However some have suggested that the slogan seemed a bit too “defensive” and I could sorta see that in a way. That being the case why not come up with a slogan that sounds more “offensive” the the sense of advancing our heritage?

The slogan should be a short one, maybe just a few words. It should be powerful, send the message that we are Southern, we are Confederate descendants, and we are proud and unapologetic for it.

Let’s see what inventive minds like ours can come up with?

Let’s help them out. What do you think the slogan of the SHPG should be? What do you think would be a good slogan for southern heritage (as opposed to “southern heritage”)?