It is to be expected that some people would take advantage of the 150th anniversary of the surrender at Appomattox (sometimes seen as the end of the Civil War, although that’s wrong) to reflect on how Americans remember the Civil War. However, that topic tends to be confused with speculation on whether Confederate heritage persists or is eroding.
Our friends at the Virginia Flaggers recently offered this 1908 photograph of the Old Soldiers Home at Richmond:
They also offered this text:
Old Soldiers Home, Richmond Virginia, Circa 1908. Look closely at the photo and you will see Veterans in their wheelchairs on the porch on the right. These men answered the call of Virginia to defend her from invasion. They fought with honor and bravery, and spent the last years of their lives on these grounds, now desecrated by the Commonwealth and the VMFA.
RETURN the flags!
RESTORE the honor!
For the flags to be returned, they must be visible in the first place. Could someone show me where there’s a Confederate flag in this photograph?
Indeed, let’s ask: where’s an image of the Confederate flag flying from the portico of the War Memorial Chapel before 1993? Anyone? Bueller?
(Substitute “Hathaway” and the effect is the same.)
No, showing me Confederate flags flying elsewhere on the grounds won’t do, folks. Show me the War Memorial Chapel with flags flying from the building itself … prior to 1993.
We have two poll questions for you to consider today.
The first concerns whether you think the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts will permit the return of the Confederate battle flag (or any other Confederate flag) to the portico on an ongoing basis when it renews its agreement with the Sons of Confederate Veterans’ camp. This isn’t asking you what the VMFA should do, but what you think it will do.
The second concerns what the SCV should do if the VMFA adheres to its present position concerning the display of these flags. We’ve hear explanations that the SCV’s representatives didn’t know what hit them in 2010, but, whatever you make of those explanations, they no longer apply. Everyone knows the current situation.
Enjoy … the comments section is open.
One of the pet phrases of the Confederate heritage group known as the Virginia Flaggers is “Restore the Honor! Return the Flags!” The target of this declaration is the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, because the Virginia Flaggers hold that institution accountable for the removal of Confederate flags outside the Memorial Chapel back in 2010. Never mind that that other groups, including the local chapter of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, were complicit in that decision. No one forced the SCV to sign that agreement.
Several weeks ago I prepared the usual TWICH post to cover events during Lee-Jackson Day. Then I thought about it. There would be no real surprises. Indeed, there were several things I expected (such as a new flag going up … I called Lexington as a possible site some time ago). Then more interesting subjects came before me. So I now offer this, largely out of obligation, and with adjustments made to reflect the passage of time. However, I warn you: there are no spoiler alerts, because nothing much happened.
Besides, I now know that posting this will puzzle Gary Gallagher. So here we go …
And so we come at long last to the moment you have all been waiting for …
… the envelope, please …
… and the winner is …
I know that some people believe it is very important to highlight misuses of the Confederate battle flag, or, as we’re so often told, “the soldiers’ flag.”
In the words of another blogger, I couldn’t agree more, and nothing could please me more than to highlight two recent examples.
First, take a look at this representation of wartime Richmond, Virginia:
OMG. The Confederate battle flag did not fly above the state house. Rather, it would have been one of the national flags. Wow. What a mistake. But not everyone knows it. We need to teach those people about the proper history of the Confederate battle flag.
And then there is the recent matter of the display of the Confederate battle flag in a “flags that flew over Florida” display in Pensacola, Florida:
No, no, no, no. Again, one of the Confederacy’s national flags might have done the trick, but the CBF never flew over the state. Some Confederate soldiers from Florida may have waived the mighty banner, but, as anyone knows, that’s different.
Thankfully the folks in Pensacola have decided to take down that flag. No word on whether it will be replaced.
People, it’s time that y’all learned the proper way to display the Confederate battle flag. Any questions?
So it would seem … and where else but Pensacola, Florida?
Sometimes it’s interesting to recall what someone says in consecutive days. Take this example:
Boy … we should really look down on people who behave that way, right? Well …
“Smacking people around”? That’s her idea of fun? A bit violent, don’t you think? “All a bunch of leftist ideologues?” Oh, no … denigration and put-downs all in the name of ideology. We should really look down on those sort of desperate, mean-spirited people.
Someone from Pensacola’s projecting again. That’s why she’s all about the hate. She’s a rather hateful person … just the right spokesperson/webmaster for a certain Confederate heritage group.
Yes, this is an exception to my rule about our friend from Pensacola.As a rule, better to follow this saying:
I’ll leave it to you to guess the author of these statements:
Americans are stupid.
Since we’ve been told that Confederate heritage advocates and Confederate veterans are Americans, at least someone wants to tell us that they are stupid, too. Of course, you might argue that it’s stupid for a Confederate heritage advocate to tell us that Confederate heritage advocates (and indeed all southerners) as well as Confederate veterans are stupid … and I’d agree. What better way to prove the point this person is making?
But that’s not all:
Diversity is shattering the USA.
Uh huh. And yet it was white people who tried to tear it apart between 1861 and 1865 so that they could continue to own black people without threat of abolition. They wanted diversity … just not equality for all.
UPDATE: The author of the comments claims that these statements, especially the first, were taken out of context. That’s to be expected. But when someone says:
We live in a nation of dumbed down ignoramuses.
… one must conclude that the speaker also thinks “Americans are stupid.”
UPDATE TWO: The author, struggling to claim that quoting her misrepresents her, now asserts that “ignoramus” merely means ignorant (and this not stupid.)
That’s not what it says here.
I love it when people claim that they did not say what they said or that they did not mean what they said in the middle of a typical temper tantrum. I would not be so stupid as to trust that person to speak for my group or to do my “heavy hitting.”
We await the next desperate fumbling excuse offered by a person who claims that she writes for a living … but at least now we know why she self-publishes as well.