The anniversary of the birth of a real nation is quietly sneaking up on us – 150 years ago, on April 12, 1861, Confederate batteries opened fire on Fort Sumter, inaugurating the War Between the States, or the “Civil War” as it is known in some parts of North America.
A historian could pick a fight over dating the birth of “Southern nationalism” to the Battle of Fort Sumter. The Confederacy never saw itself as a nation or acted much like one. It was a league of sovereign states called into existence by slaveowners.
Southern nationalism was largely the work of a generation that came of age in the 1880s: the children of Confederate veterans, who looking backward at the preceding twenty years of chaos, especially the Reconstruction period, saw the recent past through their own common poverty and oppression, and went through the process of ethnogenesis.
They were the real nation builders. You can still see their work on display in almost every Southern town. This generation laid the foundations of a Southern ethnic sub-culture that has survived in a diminished form right down to the present day. They called into existence Dixie.
It is why we still have controversies over subjects like the Flag of the Army of Northern Virginia, which was never the “Confederate flag,” but which became a symbol of heritage and ethnic pride to later generations of Southerners.
Palestine, Texas is a typical example of such a Southern town.
The peckerwoods of Palestine (and I use this as a term of endearment, as one peckerwood to another) recently made national headlines after county commissioners in Anderson County made the politically incorrect decision to raise the Stars and Bars outside the county courthouse to celebrate Confederate History Month.
Predictably, the local chapter of the NAACP protested the ceremony. “This flag was hung over my people as they were hung. This flag was flying. So, how can you celebrate this and say this is for education for me. It’s not,” said Kenneth Davidson who led the protest.
The Sons of Confederate Veterans pointed out that 1,100 men from Anderson County had fought in the War Between the States. “It’s about Anderson County … the men that marched away from that courthouse to fight,” said Dollye Jeffus of the United Daughters of the Confederacy.
With compete sincerity, the White residents of Anderson County tried to explain to blacks and the national media that the “Confederate flag” is a symbol of their heritage, and it was not their intention to celebrate slavery, make a racial statement, or offend blacks.
The Confederate flag might have originally been about the war, but as we have seen above, after the war it became something else, a symbol of Dixie and Southern nationalism. Similarly, the American flag is no longer about the American Revolution, but has become an ethnic symbol to White conservatives.
Blacks, who never belonged to the Southern nation, have always seen the Confederate flag as a symbol of slavery and a source of racial resentment. They are generally not in the habit of looking at things from the other guy’s perspective.
In Black Run America, the negroes of Palestine got their way after making enough noise, and Anderson County folded under pressure and decided to haul down the Confederate flag. Then a group of local Whites got uppity and protested the insult to their identity.
“Tyler’s KLTV reports that fourth-grader William Peeler said Wednesday he doesn’t pledge allegiance to the American flag because, “Under that flag, the Yankees killed southerners.”
“To me, it represents freedom; that doesn’t,” Billy Peeler said, pointing to the United States flag. “To me it represents tyranny. Oppression. Racism.”
This cuts straight to the heart of the matter: the controversy over the Confederate flag isn’t a historical dispute over the past. It is an ethnic conflict between blacks and Whites in the present.
There are still White people in the American South who see the Confederate flag as an ethnic symbol and who consider themselves a distinct people.
White Southerners live under the hypocrisy of multiculturalism and a government that sees them only as a financial resource to be exploited to promote blacks and other minorities.
It must be a source of bitterness for Palestinians (so many levels of irony there) to see every city in America naming a street or boulevard after Martin Luther King, Jr. and every school teaching a “Black History Month” while the people who support such things simultaneously insist on denying them the right to honor their forefathers.
These black organizations like the NAACP exist for the sole purpose of promoting a race based agenda at their expense. They have to put up with an outrageous double standard where every perverse lifestyle and foreign culture in the world must be glorified and encouraged under multiculturalism whereas their own identity and way of life is labeled offensive and targeted for destruction.
I’m sure there must be more than 50 people out there, none of whom have the slightest interest in bringing back slavery, who would pull the plug on Black Run America if they only had the chance to do so.