Episode 246 The Civil War and its Monuments
Scroll down for some informational goodness. And the statue of Nathaniel Bedford Forrest which is creepy as hell. He's also got weird guns in his hands and those crazy eyes.
On today's show we talk about Lincoln, the Civil War, statues, etc...We throw down the facts we know and some conclusions we are open to being challenged on. However, this statue has to go. With Justice Taney and John Brown and Forrest. Gone. Out. But things get harder after that....
Hey look! No Trump! Technically. We have spent a number of shows recently talking about the problem of having a president with no moral compass or sense of how to lead or unify. We are moving on a little to talk about how we think about the Civil War and the difference between memorializing, honoring, and creating public history. In other words, what the hell do we do with these statues?
If you are a hard core confederate, Dukes of Hazard style, or an rabid northerner like Horace Greeley you may not change your mind if you disagree with us. This stuff is really tricky (hence the past few shows on how hard it is to argue points). But, armed with facts, the impetus to be virtuous and loving in what we do in the public square, and with a little levity we take on another tricky subject.
The first song is what we played at the break. The second? This is Brothers in Arms by the criminally underrated Dire Straits. Its about the Civil War. And it's a damn good song.
You want links? Here they are:
Tear them down! Shouts the Atlantic
Stop being silly, the Atlantic... keep them up! Writes the Federalist
Nikki Haley a republican politician, was the first Indian Governor of a state (South Carolina) and is now the UN Ambassador under the current administration. She has tight relationships with many on the administration along with the President. But she steps "out of line" here when she ordered a confederate flag to be removed from the state house. Here are some quotes from Haley:
"On matters of race, South Carolina has had a tough history; we all know that. Many of us have seen it in our lives, in the lives of our parents and grandparents. We don't need reminders."
"For those who wish to respect the flag on private property, no one will stand in your way. But the statehouse is different. The events this past week call on us to look at this in a different way."
"We are not going to allow this symbol to divide us along longer. ... The fact that it causes so [much] pain is enough to move it from the capitol grounds. It is, after all, a capitol that belongs to all of us."
The Wall Street Journal, living up to its namesake by doing everything to make a buck, will no longer let me see the brilliant article by Peggy Noonan on the racist killings of Dylan Roof and the removal of the aforesaid flag around that time. Track it down if you can- it is called "Two Miracles in Charleston" from June 25, 2015.
In the meantime, you want books to read? Here comes the recommendations....
You can certainly disagree with any of these, but all of them are well written and uncover a bit more of the story based on close historical research and they all suggest very helpful ways to make sense of it all.... but them all.
We mentioned on the show that both of our families fought in the Civil War and for different reasons this has caused us to see the Civil War not only through our family, but both of our families who had recently immigrated to the United States. Here is Viktor Volkhausen, a great, great.... grandfather of Jeff.
Dan's family have fought in every American war since the Mexican-America War. Who is this? Dan's Great to the nth power uncle. CB van Voorhis. From the Buckeye state.