Southern History Series: Robert E. Lee on Racial Differences

Editor’s Note: What did the Confederates actually believe about race? This is a source of considerable confusion on the internet due to 1.) distrust of liberal academics who have an axe to grind against the South and 2.) a generation of Baby Boomer Rainbow Confederates who have tried in vain to downplay the racialism, slavery and white supremacy of the Old South. We’re only curious about the truth of the matter and couldn’t care less about the politics.

In the previous article, we saw that Robert E. Lee wanted to repopulate Virginia with White free laborers in the Reconstruction era and for freed blacks to relocate to the Deep South. This reflected Lee’s dismal take of race relations and the prospects of the African under the free labor system:

The following excerpt comes from Emory M. Thomas’s book Robert E. Lee: A Biography:

“Wherever you find the negro, everything is going down around him, and wherever you find the white man, you see everything around him improving.”

– Robert E. Lee to Thomas Carter, April 15, 1865

The following excerpt comes from Charles Bracelon Flood’s book Lee: The Last Years:

“You will never prosper with the blacks, and it is abhorrent to a reflecting mind to be supporting and cherishing those who are plotting and working for your injury, and all of whose sympathies and associations are antagonistic to yours. I wish them no evil in the world – on the contrary, will do them every good in my power, and know that they are misled by those to whom they have given their confidence; but our material, social, and political interests are naturally with the whites.”

– Robert E. Lee to R.E. Lee, Jr., March 19, 1868

Robert E. Lee’s attitude was that while he wished the emancipated blacks well his loyalties and interests were aligned with that of his fellow Whites. He was a humane race realist who saw blacks as a different race with different capabilities, loyalties and interests. The traditional Southern view of race was never one of total and complete hostility to blacks.

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7 Comments

  1. Good points about Lee. Racial separatism/nationalism does not have to be based on hate of all others, only on reality and a deep love for one’s own kin/people. Men like Robert E. Lee and R.L. Dabney did not hate the Negro; they just wished to protect White folks and our culture from Negro crime and miscegenation.

  2. “The traditional Southern view of race was never one of total and complete hostility to blacks.”

    Yep. They are what they are, and we are what we are. No amount of let’s pretend will change it.

  3. “it is abhorrent to a reflecting mind to be supporting and cherishing those who are plotting and working for your injury, and all of whose sympathies and associations are antagonistic to yours.”

    This is what we’re essentially dealing with in terms of the Jews, their ostensibly White, SJW stooges, and their coloured auxiliaries. Who are increasingly hostile to the Jews, and increasingly uncontrollable. But still dangerous to Whites.

  4. Robert E. Lee, however, was not your average southerner. He was a gentleman as well as an intelligent man. But Most southerners were not either, they wanted to keep the Negroes to pick cotton and do dirty works without thinking about future consequences.

    • The most typical attitude toward blacks was undoubtedly paternalism. Southerners did not believe in racial equality, but that did not usually provoke hostility. Instead, they were quite fond of “their negroes” except in times of extreme poverty or when Yankees intervened in the South like during Reconstruction or the Civil Rights Movement.

  5. Give me a good fire of hatred to drive them from our lands.

    Mewlilng and bleating “humanely” about these filthy, torturing, raping, killing, destructive pieces of bipedal garbage is simply weakness and surrender.

    The man who hates, also cares about something. The man with no hate is a man not to be trusted, because he will betray anything, including his own race, in order to maintain his lofty neutrality.

    This is a biological, Darwinian world, with winners and losers, the losers going extinct, not a maiden aunt debating room where everyone wins.

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