May 11, 2017

"Crews, wearing masks to cover their faces, worked under a heavy police presence starting at 3 a.m. to dismantle the statue..."

... of Jefferson Davis, in New Orleans.
[The city spokesperson] said the law enforcement officials took extra precautions because of “consistent threats, harassment and intimidation tactics” surrounding the removal.

Some protesters carrying Confederate flags shouted “cowards” and “totalitarianism” as it was removed....

Other works expected to be removed are a bronze statue of Gen. Robert E. Lee that has stood in a traffic circle, named Lee Circle, in the city’s central business district since 1884, and an equestrian statue of P.G.T. Beauregard, a Confederate general. Because of the threat of violence, the city would not release details on the timeline for when the remaining two statues would be removed.
ADDED: The statues are not getting destroyed. They're being warehoused, potentially to be displayed at some point in a museum setting, buffered by contextualizing historical materials. So this is not like the Taliban blowing up the Bamiyan Buddhas. Nor is it a case of a court dictating that a monument must come down. (My thoughts drifted back to Justice Breyer's decision against requiring the removal of the 10 Commandments monument on the Texas statehouse grounds.)

In New Orleans, we have the political branch of government making a decision about the design of shared public space. The people, acting through government, have the power to redesign their spaces to express their current values. Those who object to the new decisions have a right to protest (but not to commit or threaten acts of violence). They lost elections. Let them try to win in the future by arguing that the statues should be moved out of the warehouse and back to the public square (or simply that a dignified and accurate historical museum should be built).

We've talked before on this blog about removing statues from public places. We've seen it done for aesthetic reasons (where the honored person looked ugly), and we've seen it for political reasons:
Iconoclasm. If you're inclined to reach back into history, you will, perhaps, find it everywhere. From the Wikipedia article "Iconoclasm," here are "The Sons of Liberty pulling down the statue of George III of the United Kingdom on Bowling Green (New York City), 1776":



And I can't look at that and not think about the statue of Saddam Hussein that our military tore down in Bagdhad in April 2003. And what of all those monumental statues of Vladimir Lenin that came in for destruction when the Soviet Union dissolved. Would you like to see them all removed?

I know there's at least one still standing, because the NYT, just a couple days ago, ran a story cooing over an aging American couple who are using Airbnb to live in various European cities and the slideshow features the man, dressed in shorts, like a child, and standing, like a child, knee-high to "this statue of Lenin in Lithuania." The hand of the smiling child-man reaches out to encircle the index finger of Soviet dictator. In another photo, the woman, in a short skirt, poses at the feet of a giant Stalin. This one too is "in Lithuania." We're told there's "a sculpture garden." Isn't that nice?

I need to do my own research to find out about "Grūtas Park (unofficially known as Stalin's World...)... a sculpture garden of Soviet-era statues and an exposition of other Soviet ideological relics from the times of the Lithuanian SSR."
Founded in 2001 by entrepreneur Viliumas Malinauskas, the park is located near Druskininkai, about 130 kilometres (81 mi) southwest of Vilnius, Lithuania.... Its establishment faced some fierce opposition, and its existence is still controversial.... The park also contains playgrounds, a mini-zoo and cafes, all containing relics of the Soviet era. On special occasions actors stage re-enactments of various Soviet-sponsored festivals.
So there's an alternative to iconoclasm.
New Orleans needs its Grūtas Park.

150 comments:

Michael K said...

Memory Hole.

Orwell would understand.

sparrow said...

Can't say I was sorry when Memphis ditched it's Nathan Bedford Forrest statue. Yes it's authentic history, but not history I would want to celebrate

readering said...

Store them with Lenin statues behind Iron Curtain.

madAsHell said...

At first, they came for the statues, but I didn't care, because I wasn't a statue.

Once written, twice... said...

Ann, you're going to bring out the Althouse Hillbillies with this post.

traditionalguy said...

To the winners go the spoils. These monuments are Lost Cause losers celebrated for losing well.

It is past time to replace them with Sherman and Grant monuments. I am sure there are some Yankee States with a few they can spare.

Tim said...

Book burning. Well done, progs.

Once written, twice... said...

Throw the Hillbilly statues in the same dump as those of Stalin and Lenin.

Lyle Smith said...

Removing Lost Cause history is probably not the best way to ensure future people remember Lost Cause history. Pity.

Bob Boyd said...

When smashing monuments, save the pedestals – they always come in handy.
- Stanislaw Lec, advice for revolutionaries

Paddy O said...

Well, we shouldn't celebrate traitors anyhow.

Lyle Smith said...

Hey, hey, ho, ho... Monticello has got to go! Hey, hey, ho, ho... Monticello has got to go!

exhelodrvr1 said...

It's not necessarily inappropriate to remove the statues. The problem is that this is part of the general movement to revise history, and judge people/events of the past based on current beliefs rather than looking at them in the context of when they lived/occurred.

Hiroshima and Nagasaki are other examples of that.

traditionalguy said...

Atlanta changed its Confederate street names 50 years ago. Forrest Ave. became Martin Luther King, Jr Blvd. It took bigger signs.

readering said...

Not to worry. They would have been submerged anywat soon enough.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

That's fine. Pull it all down.

I'm sure this will satisfy the people who called for it.

Lyle Smith said...

What is wrong with "Hillbillies"? Why the hate? By the way, there are no hills in NOLA.

LYNNDH said...

This drive to erase one side of the Civil War certainly smacks of "Revisionism" that permeated Soviet Russia and Communist China and other totalitiarn governments. It's like saying that the dropping of the nuclear bombs on Japan weren't necessary.
Once Written - to disagree with this revisionism is not being a "Hillbilly".

Jason said...

People who use the word "hillbilly" are just showing their profound ignorance.

Michael K said...

"Book burning. Well done, progs."

Yes. Just so.

Lyle Smith said...

It is a bit like the the little red book Cultural Revolution where young, enthusiastic communists destroyed a lot of artifacts of Chinese history because it was not communist.

sparrow said...

There is certainly an important place in education for history and Lee and Davis will undoubtably be remembered. However public monuments celebrate those personages as venerable; and that should be selective.

readering said...

Necessary or justifiable? Clearly not necessary. Weren't needed to defeat Nazis.

rhhardin said...

It's a celebration of cowardice.

rhhardin said...

I'd assume the statues were celebtations of good character, so they had to go.

Lyle Smith said...

The monuments are more history now than celebration. They were celebrated long ago by the people who put them up. It speaks to those people more than it speaks to us.

Paddy O said...

Pulling down statues isnt erasing history, it is not celebrating those who took up arms against the US. We do not have statues of Yamamoto in Hawaii, but everyone remembers the history.

rhhardin said...

Once the camel of good character gets its nose under the tent, social justice is back out on the desert.

readering said...

Go to the library and ask if they have any books about confederate generals. And come to my branch and I can show you multiple copies of My Struggle.

Matthew Sablan said...

Maybe we should just put statues of little girls standing defiantly in front of them instead.

Bay Area Guy said...

Not a fan of Jefferson Davis, not a fan of the confederate "cause" of 1860.

However, not a fan of removing statutes because of left wing political correctness in 2017.

We defeated the South, imposed a rough peace on them, and gradually overtime reunited with them. That's a good thing. Why pick at old healed-up scabs?

mockturtle said...

Sad. And next to tear down a statue of R.E. Lee? One of the finest gentlemen to ever grace our nation? More than sad. Despicable!

Lyle Smith said...

Adding statues of defiant little girls would work. Altering the context while keeping the statues would be brilliant.

mockturtle said...

Lyle Smith observes: It is a bit like the the little red book Cultural Revolution where young, enthusiastic communists destroyed a lot of artifacts of Chinese history because it was not communist.

I would argue that it's more than just a bit like the Cultural Revolution. These actions are right out of Mao's playbook.

Left Bank of the Charles said...

When Charging Bull wins his lawsuit but finds that he is the one who has to be moved, Jefferson Davis can take his place opposite Fearless Girl.

Unknown said...

The same people crying out to tear down all the Confederate stuff because "slavery and butchery!" are the exact same people who mourned the tearing down of the Stalin and Lenin statutes; who cry over Che, and who say prayers to Hugo Chavez and Castro.

--Vance

Dave from Minnesota said...

The Minnesota capital grounds has a statue of Floyd B Olson, a communist. He advocated declaring marital law and then sending the national guard to the homes of the wealthy and taking their property from them. He also tried to do Venezuela type things like having the government steal mines and grain elevators from private owners. His Farmer-Labor party (now the DFL party, that Al Franken belongs to) was funded by Stalin. Some embarrassing things came out after the fall of the USSR and Moscow archives were opened up to western researchers.

My point? Instead of erasing history, let’s talk about it. Leave the confederate statues and the communist statues.

Hammond X. Gritzkofe said...

In the dark of night...

Winston Smith, call your office.

"...an era that celebrated white supremacy and racism." Yeah, some of that, but also States' Rights.

And yet people still feel more at ease amongst folk whose appearance and behavior are similar to their own. Strange, that.

Will it be replaced by a statue of AlGore? Ben Butler? Ray Nagin?

Dave from Minnesota said...

Paddy O, we do have a statue of Lenin in Seattle. The confederates were US citizens and the congress passed a bill declaring confederate war veterans to be US war veterans.

Gahrie said...

Orwell would understand.

So would Stalin.

Ambrose said...

I bet if someone had told Jefferson Davis and Robert E Lee in 1865 that statutes of them would last in New Orleans until 2017 they would have been surprised.

Dave from Minnesota said...

"Atlanta changed its Confederate street names 50 years ago. Forrest Ave. became Martin Luther King, Jr Blvd. It took bigger signs."

And when do we change that as Rev MLK was:
-A Bible thumper who didn't believe in the constitutional separation of church and state
-Opposed gender equity
-Was homophobic
-And he seemed to have a dislike of the Asians of South Vietnam

Gahrie said...

It is a bit like the the little red book Cultural Revolution where young, enthusiastic communists destroyed a lot of artifacts of Chinese history because it was not communist.

Or the Muslims destroying pre-Islamic historical sites.

Gahrie said...

How long until they start dynamiting Mount Rushmore?

Bob Boyd said...

It's only a matter of time until Lincoln was a Democrat.

hawkeyedjb said...

The losing side in a war rarely gets to venerate its hero-losers. It's not appropriate to put up monuments honoring the leaders who fought for a vicious and dastardly cause, no matter how nobly they may have carried out their fight. Perhaps at the time it wasn't worth the effort to put a stop to it, or it was mistaken magnanimity on the part of the victors. I don't think there are statues honoring Tory supporters, regardless how fervently they may have supported their cause.

Ann Althouse said...

Big addition to the original post.

Gahrie said...

It's only a matter of time until Lincoln was a Democrat.

Actually...some Lefty might actually read his speeches and decide that Lincoln was an evil racist also, and we should pull down the Lincoln memorial.

Gahrie said...

They're being warehoused, potentially to be displayed at some point in a museum setting, buffeted by contextualizing historical materials.

Wanna bet?

Dave from Minnesota said...

"How long until they start dynamiting Mount Rushmore?"

There are efforts to sandblast Stone Mountain.

Bob Boyd said...

buffered?

Dave from Minnesota said...

hawkeyedjb,

What do you think about the Crazy Horse carving in South Dakota? He fought against the US.

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

I have no idea how I feel about all this. I cheered when the statues of Lenin came down. I cried when the Taliban destroyed the old Buddahs. It sicken me the destruction by ISIS. It bothered me when the Baltic countries took down the statues of the Red Army (they did invade the countries at the beginning).

I don't trust the motives of the left. They are going full tilt totaltarian and I think this is one more example. All my family fought for the North. I had a relative in Andersonville POW camp. So I don't have feelings for the CSA.

I don't know.

Matthew Sablan said...

"It's only a matter of time until Lincoln was a Democrat."

-- He's only a Republican because that was Before the Parties Switched.

Jim Gust said...

I visited Grutas Park a couple years after it opened. I highly recommend it if you are traveling in Europe. There is much more to it than Lenin and Stalin, the communists erected statues to all manner of lower level butchers in Lithuania. Each one has a short biography, including the numbers of deaths he is responsible for. To see the extent of the bureaucracy of death in the contrasting setting of a lovely park is very unsettling, a brilliant choice by Viliumas Malinauskas. BTW, he made his fortune in mushrooms.

I was accompanied by the Education Minister on that tour. I asked him why so many families were having their pictures taken in front of these ghastly statues. He said that it is to prove that the statues and their creators no longer have any power over them.

Ann's parallel to Grutas Park is imperfect, as it is a monument to the final overthrow of tyranny, and a testimony to the horrors of communism. A museum of the southern perspective on the civil war would have a very different purpose.

mockturtle said...

Lenin Statue, Seattle

buwaya said...

"Perhaps at the time it wasn't worth the effort to put a stop to it, or it was mistaken magnanimity on the part of the victors."

It was a tacit accommodation to avoid the ongoing cost of military occupation and the risk of renewed political agitation. The Union won a crushing victory at enormous cost, but was not willing to continue to pay for a peace at its maximum terms against the majority will of the defeated populations.

In this case the views of the local authority in that city seems to reflect that of their current residents, that opposes these monuments. Populations change.

Etienne said...

Waste of time. The city is below sea level. It is doomed.

rhhardin said...

I could do without Mt. Rushmore. WTF is that about?

mockturtle said...

Gahrie suggests: Actually...some Lefty might actually read his speeches and decide that Lincoln was an evil racist also, and we should pull down the Lincoln memorial.

Yes, Lincoln initially favored sending the freed slaves back to Africa.

readering said...

Bill I'm a Texan by birth and a history buff. Visiting NO it never occurred to me to have statues removed. But happy to have had English statues removed in Dublin. So it is a complicated story.

FullMoon said...

Jason said... [hush]​[hide comment]

People who use the word "hillbilly" are just showing their profound ignorance.


Nah, he is just foolin' around. Appropriated Hill(ary)Billy(Jeff) Clinton from Obamas first campaign in 2008. It was used by Obama as a derogatory term for Hillary's team throughout the entire campaign

Gahrie said...

I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races, that I am not nor ever have been in favor of making voters or jurors of negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people; and I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races which I believe will forever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And in as much as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I as much as any other man am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race.

Kevin said...

I read this as: "The statues are not getting destroyed. They're being warehoused, potentially to be destroyed at some point in a museum setting, buffeted by contextualizing historical materials"

I mean, why destroy something at 3AM when you can do it in a future museum setting as a government-funded piece of performance art? Wouldn't that send a better message to the proles?

rcocean said...

Jefferson Davis should have been hung, so I don't care about his statue. Lee and Beauregard (especially him since he was connected with New Orleans his entire life) were important Civil War Generals - why tear down their statues?

Its funny how the left has brainwashed everyone into thinking "racism" is the worstest thing in the whole world and now like "1984" we should erase any historical figure that was connected to Slavery. Of course, after we get rid of the slaveholders, we'll have to get rid of the Segregationists, and then who knows after that...

First, Stalin got rid of Trotsky, then Bukharin, and then Yezhov, each man supporting the destruction of the one who went before him.

whitney said...

There is a park like that outside of Budapest too. I forget what it's called but I was there years ago

Big Mike said...

They should leave the statue of P. G. T. Beauregard in its place. If it wasn't for his poor battle plan at the Battle of Pittsburg Landing, which resulted in units being intermingled and subordinate commanders separated from their troops, coupled with his poor leadership after the death of Albert Sidney Johnston, the South might have had a major victory and generals Grant and Sherman, had they survived, would have been cashiered. But Grant counter-attacked in the morning and sent Beauregard off in full retreat. Grant would couple this victory near Shiloh Church with victories at Vicksburg, Chattanooga, and, eventually, Appomattox Court House while Sherman took Atlanta and marched through Georgia to Savannah. Had Beauregard been worthy of a statue the South might have won the War of Northern Aggression (tongue in cheek).

TWW said...

"By the way, there are no hills in NOLA."

Sure there are. They're called Dikes and overpasses.

tcrosse said...

There is a park like that outside of Budapest too. I forget what it's called but I was there years ago

Memento Park. Still there.

In front of a high-class gin mill named Red Square at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas there stands a huge, decapitated statue of Lenin. There was a bit of fuss when it was erected, so the owners cut the head off and decorated it with faux bird shit.

rhhardin said...

All the civil war generals were gay.

TWW said...

Yes we should get rid of Monticello. Not practical to store, so bulldoze it. Also, Mt. Vernon and The Hermitage. Of course, that's just a start.

I don't always like history but, when I do, I prefer it sanitized.

Big Mike said...

@Gahrie, I think Lincoln's views evolved. As a young man Lincoln personally saw slaves at work, and seems to have viewed them as mentally slower and vastly less industrious than he and other young white men climbing the first steps of the economic ladder. Somewhere between then and the Emancipation Proclamation he seems to have asked himself how hard he would work if he were a slave and how bright would have shown himself to be if self-education would earn him a flogging. And the answers came back "No harder than it takes to avoid a beating" and "No brighter than it takes to avoid a beating."

William said...

I have a wishy washy solution to this problem. Tear down the statues of lesser figures like Bedford or Jefferson Davis, but allow Robert E. Lee to retain his honored place. From what I've read Lee led an honorable life, and he's more known for that than for his slave holdings.....There were a great many men who marched and died for the Confederacy who did not own slaves. They were not all evil men, and their descendants should be entitled to respect them.

Lyle Smith said...

There are levees in NOLA... they are not called dikes. Different heritage.

Anthony said...

Oh, fer pete's sake, the Confederacy was full of racists while Lenin started a process that brutally snuffed out over 100 million innocent lives.

So yeah, get rid of the raaaaaaaacists. Mass murderers get a pass.

Owen said...

"...buffeted by contextualizing historical materials.."

Buffeted? Or buffered?

Gahrie said...

Somewhere between then and the Emancipation Proclamation

The Emancipation Proclamation freed the slaves Lincoln had no power to free (those in territory in rebellion) and did not free the slaves he could free (those in territory loyal to the union).

The Cracker Emcee said...

"Removing Lost Cause history is probably not the best way to ensure future people remember Lost Cause history. Pity."

And that's the curious thing. Once history has been whitewashed there's no need to correct it's effects? Black folks are oppressed because of...what?

Michael K said...

It's not appropriate to put up monuments honoring the leaders who fought for a vicious and dastardly cause, no matter how nobly they may have carried out their fight.

Have you ever been to Napoleon's tomb ?

Given the state of history teaching in this country, I doubt if 10% of the people pushing this PC exercise could tell you anything about the people whose statues they are tearing down.

wendybar said...

So when the day comes, that whomever is in charge decides to take down MLK statues or Obama statues, I bet the same people who are FOR this, will all of a sudden be against it... THIS is political. Period.

TWW said...

"There are levees in NOLA... they are not called dikes. Different heritage."

A case model of a difference without a distinction. But, thanks for adding to the conversation.

wendybar said...



Blogger Matthew Sablan said...
Maybe we should just put statues of little girls standing defiantly in front of them instead


DING DING DING THE solution to all of our statue problems!!

HoodlumDoodlum said...

William said...They were not all evil men, and their descendants should be entitled to respect them.

No. Read the comments here! Those people were traitors, and evil, and no one should respect them or anything about them. The city voted, the people spoke, so take the monuments away. Putting them in a warehouse isn't the same as destroying them, so don't even try to make that comparison. I mean, I'm not sure WHY they're not being destroyed--the people voted, after all, and these are monuments to evil men who shouldn't be respected...but anyway you're just wrong, William.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

hawkeyedjb said... It's not appropriate to put up monuments honoring the leaders who fought for a vicious and dastardly cause, no matter how nobly they may have carried out their fight

John Brown Monument - Harper's Ferry

Caroline Walker said...

History is the chronicle of fallen men and women grappling with events beyond their control. We can learn from it, or we can strike a superior pose and judge past actors by standards that didn't exist at the time.
What galls me is the capitulation to ignorance. grandstanding politicians and academicians caving to the pc jacobins give up without so much as a call to reason and posterity.
I don't think this is analogous to the statue of saddam hussein. It isn't as if the white population in NOLA identifies with its civil war heroes. They are part of the past. Unfortunately, we've allowed ignorance to redefine the confederacy as driven by racial animus, but that's simply not true. Most southerners wanted desperately to transition out of slavery, and as we know, soldiers in battle are fighting for their own survival and for their buddy next to them, not some abstract principle. It's complicated, in other words. So best to let history stand sentry. Versailles was created with slave labor, so were the pyramids.
Once we give quarter to the ignorant hordes, there will be no end to it.
And of course, focusing our attention on Evillllll Raaaaacists of The Past does exactly zero to provide a young black man with his father.

mockturtle said...

Well said, Caroline!

furious_a said...

So when are the proggy wrecking crews going to remove the N. Carolina monument from the grounds at Gettysburg?

Paddy O said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
buwaya said...

The solution to all this is obvious but difficult to implement.
Breed a generation of white southerners in sufficient numbers to restore their demographic preponderance and have them reoccupy those places.

furious_a said...

Read the comments here! Those people were traitors, and evil, and no one should respect them or anything about them.

The names of two of my great-great-great uncles are cast in bronze with those of their squaddies on the Pennsylvania Monument at Gettysburg (142d PA Volunteers, Buford's Div., Emmittsburg Pike, the First Day) and I say Fuck you, let the dead rest.

furious_a said...

Sorry, sorry, just had it up to HERE with preening chairborne warrior bitches like HoodlumDoodlum.

Sorry, there I go again.

Paddy O said...

"The confederates were US citizens and the congress passed a bill declaring confederate war veterans to be US war veterans."

But not Robert E. Lee. Well, not until 1975. I don't know if Beauregard was given his citizenship back during his life, but I wouldn't be surprised. But he was not included in the comprehensive pardon by Johnson, being part of the intentionally excluded class.

A lot of Civil War generals had a successful post-war careers, and it's not bad to honor them for that. I don't think we should rename Washington and Lee University. But to celebrate them as generals is highlighting and celebrating the cause for which they fought, a cause that involved killing a massive amount of Americans. It was also a cause that is really hard to justify, as they were also fighting for the continued oppression of a great many Americans who were likewise living in the South. They weren't just fighting the North, after all.

And the initial move to restore citizenship to enlisted soldiers was a brilliant way to bring healing after the war, as can also be seen in the Civil War remembrances that happened with both Union and Confederate soldiers until they all passed away. Too bad the South turned its back on the healing and instated racial policies that led to another century of oppression rather than healing, and used Civil War imagery and figures to justify such moves.


I don't think Lee was an evil guy at all. He was a very honorable guy. But Robert E. Lee was likely (arguably) responsible for more US military deaths than any single other general in history. The government of the time, even with all their offers of healing, refused to give him back his citizenship during his life

I have direct ancestors who fought for the Confederacy, so I'm not dismissing everyone who fought for that side. That said, their leaders did a profound disservice in seceding and in fighting the Civil War. And the capability of West Point trained generals who used their training to fight US soldiers, thus prolonging and deepening the war, shouldn't be something to celebrate, or emulate, which is what statues are about.

The tomb of Napoleon is very different because for all his faults and problems he fought for France against France's traditional enemies.

But we wouldn't expect to see a statue of Nelson in Paris or maybe a better example is how France treats memorials to Pétain.

eddie willers said...

Blogger Matthew Sablan said...
Maybe we should just put statues of little girls standing defiantly in front of them instead


DING DING DING THE solution to all of our statue problems!!


Just add or remove little girls as needed. Brilliant!

furious_a said...

Are they only going to allow re-enactments of Union victories?

Whatever they decide, the re-enactments are going to look pretty silly with only one side present marching around and volleying at nothing.

Richard said...

When I was recently vacationing in Budapest, the tour guide told us about the Russian statues that were removed after the fall of the Berlin wall. The guide let us know that the statues were not destroyed just in case Russian decided to once again take over Hungary.

furious_a said...

There's a monument to the 1945 Soviet capture of Vienna just outside the Ringstrasse. Soviets put it up during its occupation and as part of the withdrawal negotiations stipulated that it was to remain undisturbed, which aside from occasional vandalism it has to this day

The Austrians convinced the Russians to choose a site near the Belvedere that happened to have an inoperable fountain in front of it. Once the Monument was raised and after the Soviets withdrew, the Austrians turned on the fountain, which pretty fully (still to this day) obscures the Pedestal portion of the monument unless one is standing right next to it.

exiledonmainstreet said...

Excellent comment, Caroline Walker!

I am a Northerner and my sympathies have always been with the Union, but it's not difficult to see why this is happening now. This isn't about what long-dead Southerners did, not really. It's about punishing Southerners now, because they are "deplorables" who vote the wrong way. It's about telling them that it is wrong to take any pride whatsoever in their ancestors. This was not an issue when Carter of Georgia or Clinton of Arkansas were in office. Contrary to liberal myth, the South did not begin voting en masse for the Republicans until the 2000's - long after the supposed "Southern strategy" was supposed to have occurred. Now that they are, the liberals are taking revenge.

traditionalguy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
traditionalguy said...

We could put always up a T. J. Jackson statue, but should it have his left arm on or off?

Like ElRushbo that General Jackson (who was also a Scots-Irish Presbyterian) could kill more Yankees with one arm than any of the other Generals could with both.

Old Blue light's Grave site is in Lexington Cemetary, not far from VMI. It has a 20 foot obelisk, with many lemons left around on the ground.

exhelodrvr1 said...

TWW,
"Sure there are. They're called Dikes and overpasses."

I believe the accepted term is cis-levee.

furious_a said...

Funny how Fritz Hollings ran the Confederate Battle Flag up the pole in Columbia 50 years ago and kept it there and Libs only got mad because Nikki Hale didn't tear it down YESTERDAYZZZ!!!

Angel-Dyne said...

AA: So this is not like the Taliban blowing up the Bamiyan Buddhas.

The intent is precisely the same. The perps are just going about it by different means.

As others (e.g. Balfegor) have discussed here before, this hostility and manic purging is something recent. It's not as if a century and more of "coming to terms" with this Brothers' War hadn't preceded this agitation. But that "coming to terms" was the coming to terms of a historically rooted nation, a people and a history in all its complexity, and that cannot satisfy our newer crop of righteous purgers. For their goal is that of the Taliban with the Bamiyan - to memory-hole, to "blank slate" history and to fill it with the cartoon history that promotes the narrative. (What motivates the gormless castrati who go along with it all is another question.)

(Btw, "Lee:the U.S.::Lenin:former Soviet Union and Soviet bloc countries"? Don't even know where to start with this one...)

As HoodlumDoodlum, above, says sardonically:

"That's fine. Pull it all down.

I'm sure this will satisfy the people who called for it."


Althouse, the bland cheery naïvété of your analysis here is a thing of wonder.

Dave from Minnesota said...

And Hollings ran for President as a Democrat in 1984. But wait, I thought all the southern pro-confederacy racists switched parties in 1964.

Ann Althouse said...

"Buffeted? Or buffered?"

Good point!

I will change it.

"Buffeted" means to be knocked around. I'm not going to defend that.

Dave from Minnesota said...

For the record......I checked and the South Dakota Crazy Horse monument is on private property, so we don't have to blow it up.

hstad said...

AA, what's next bulldoze Ft. Sumter since the Confederates took it over, essentially starting the Civil War. You know it could be just as simple that we don't acquiesce to all the snowflakes and hurt people. The World is not fair and this is a perfect example of how stupid the PC crowd has gotten. I laughed when you used the Saddam Hussein statue toppling. You do know we were in a "hot war" at the time not this BS PC silliness which makes us all look like spoiled children.

Michael K said...

Too bad the South turned its back on the healing and instated racial policies that led to another century of oppression rather than healing, and used Civil War imagery and figures to justify such moves.

I think a fair argument can be made that a lot of the hostility after the Civil War was the behavior of "Radical Republicans" like Stanton after Lincoln was assassinated. I'm not saying that anger was out of place given the murder of the president but the measures taken with "carpet baggers" and the rapacious occupation, which contrasted with Lincoln's plans, created lasting bitterness

Stanton, for example, libeled Sherman who was a major figure in winning the war, because Sherman negotiated with Confederates trying to surrender. He was going by Lincoln's plans explained to him a week before. At the Grand Review in Washington a month later, Sherman refused to shake hands with Stanton.

Had Lincoln lived and had a reconciliation occurred along the lines he wanted, the next century might have been far less contentious.

The Ku Klux Klan might never have become the force it did, for example.

I'm not saying racism would have been absent but that would have been more tolerable than the rage that Stanton and his carpetbaggers created.

My whole family are northerners and two great uncles died in the war but I have read a lot of history from that era.

Angel-Dyne said...

furious_a: Sorry, sorry, just had it up to HERE with preening chairborne warrior bitches like HoodlumDoodlum.

Sorry, there I go again.


Are you misreading HD's sarcasm or am I misreading yours?

sparrow said...

FWIW my whole family is from the North, my wife is from Texas but all of our ancesters were in Europe during the Civil War. I'm not that invested one way or the other, but on self reflection I have Yankee instincts (as my wife will attest). Perhaps the most striking thing is why now? and why this particular battle? The answer to that is the ever-angry unforgiving, merciless left leaves no area undisturbed, permits no politics free safe zone and no arguement, no matter how petty, is allowed to pass uncontested.

gadfly said...

If history pisses you off, you do the same thing the Global Warming folks do - stir up a fuss based upon a misconception and then ripoff your ring-in-nose followers. "History simply cannot stand!" (saith the Lord of the Dikes).

I don't know who is paying for the statue killers, but it should not be the taxpayers.

tcrosse said...

There must have been quite a few statues of Hitler and Mussolini cast in bronze. I wonder what happened to them ? (This is not to imply that Confederate leaders were like Hitler. For one thing, none of them were Republicans) .

William Chadwick said...

I don't mind the tearing down of the Confederate-hero statues, except that it seems to be part of the "liberal" agenda--and we all know how devoted to liberty those folks are. It's like the Lenin and his followers complaining about the evils of the Tsars.

Michael said...

I have walked by these statues in cities and towns across the south my entire life. Suddenly these long dead men are traitors and evil spirits haunting our public spaces, infecting the passersby with their hateful racism. Three years ago they were just statues in parks, maybe providing a little shade or a seat on the pedestal for those strolling through, those who could not name the figure on the horse.

The empty plinths will serve just as well as replicas of stupidity and malice and, yes, racism as those removed. There is no reason to protect the books written about these men and what they did, no justification for permitting their memory in any form. And so it will be if they have their way.

Doug said...

Why did the workers have to wear masks? The city should have just hired all black tradesmen and women to tear down the statues, no masks, just tears of joy and celebration. Dancing and shit.

Anthony said...

The Union Forever!

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Never forego an opportunity to award yourself unearned moral praise
Never miss a chance to sneer and condescend to those you label inferior
Never forget that you're better than them, that your ancestors were better than their ancestors, and that anyone who can't see that today is a bad person
Never stop reminding the world that it's your feelings, intentions, and stated beliefs that really matter (not your actions and life choices) and that yours are now and will always be superior, in every way, to theirs

The people have spoken.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Argument:

People who respect or venerate Confederate historical figures are to "splooge stooges" as people who remove Confederate monuments/"the people" who vote to do so are to "the backbone of society."

HoodlumDoodlum said...

It's a racket, and a ratchet effect. The accepted arc of history only bends one way, of course. It's funny to say "all you have to do is convince enough people and we'll take these statues out of mothballs; of course we will!" but we all know that's silly.
Not my city, not my monuments--New Orleans can do whatever the fuck they want.

If it makes just ONE child feel better, it'll be worth it. I mean, think of the children! Think of the kids and then tear all the offensive things down. Pat yourself on the back as you're doing it (naturally).

Being on "the right side of history" is all that matters, in the end. Tear down the Stonewall Jackson statues and erect Stonewall Riot memorials! The last President talked about how great, and noble, and righteous that Stonewall was, didn't he?

The people have spoken. In THIS case that's what we have to respect. In other cases we're highly critical of what the people decide--we sometimes say we only go against the voice of the people when their votes infringe on the fundamental rights of others, but in truth we congratulate ourselves on opposing the vote of the masses on all sorts of issues (how many men wear shorts, do you think?)...but for the moment the important thing is that the people have spoken and that alone overcomes any opinion anyone else might have.

Angel-Dyne said...

HoodlumDoodlum: Never forego an opportunity to award yourself unearned moral praise
Never miss a chance to sneer and condescend to those you label inferior
Never forget that you're better than them, that your ancestors were better than their ancestors, and that anyone who can't see that today is a bad person


Oh, it's not the "my ancestors were better than your ancestors" who are the worst of the lot. Sure they can be obnoxious and destructive of one's own interests but hey, being partial to one's own ancestors is what humans do. If we all think that way, it all balances out.

No, it's the "I'm totally morally superior to my ancestors" lot who are really the devil's own piss-ants. Aside from being insufferable ingrates, they hugely magnify the virulence of any of the "my ancestors were better than your ancestors" guys who happen to be working against your interests.

I think they should all be chloroformed, shanghai'd to an ink parlor, and tattoed, on some always visible (to them) body part, with the words "you are not morally superior to your ancestors".

traditionalguy said...

You want to see
War memorial with the names of the dead chiseled on them tour Ontario. Half their men must have died defending Great Britain's hold on 20 miles of no man's land between the trench lines in NE France in The Great War.

DJT's mother left Scotland because nearly all of the marriage age men from Isle of Lewis were killed in France or on the boat home 100 yards from shore by 1918.

mockturtle said...

I suppose the Vietnam War Memorial will be torn down, eventually. After all, those soldiers may have killed some Vietnamese before they died.

Matthew Blaine said...

The Civil War victors have apparently decided that the terms of surrender signed at Appomattox Courthouse 152 years ago weren't punitive enough.

Angel-Dyne said...

The nice thing about this topic is that...122 comments and the thread is still 100% Inga and Ritmo free.

Unknown said...

F****** disgusting.

RichardJohnson said...

I had relatives on both sides who fought and died in the Civil War. I include one who was killed fighting on the side of John Brown at Harper's Ferry, as the events at Harper's Ferry had an influence on secession and the Civil War. Another family member who died in the Civil War was a Confederate colonel who came from a slaveholding family.

I prefer keeping the Confederate statues in full view, as a reminder of our fallibility. I judge my Confederate ancestors to have been brave but also mistaken. Future generations may judge me to have been as mistaken as I currently view my Confederate ancestors to have been mistaken.

There is a view among many at present that they are vastly superior to those who came before them. Those in the future may well judge us of today to have been as foolish as we may judge our ancestors.

Paddy O said...


"Had Lincoln lived and had a reconciliation occurred along the lines he wanted, the next century might have been far less contentious."

I'm entirely convinced this is true. John Wilkes Booth thought he struck a blow for the South, but he really struck a blow against the South. Lincoln was a moderating force and a brilliant rhetorician, the political and moral authority he had coming at the end of the Civil War was incredible. Of course many in the South hated him, but he didn't hate them. The postwar administrations really led to a renewed, enduring conflict that resulted in a cold war of sorts against both the North and Southern blacks.

I read a significant amount of Civil War history when I was a teenager and a little after. I rarely did homework but was a voracious reader on my own. I have a pretty good Civil War library from then and occasional contributios after. Especially love my Photographic History of the Civil War set. Glory still ranks as my favorite movie, though it's not the best example of pure movie making it was a movie that came out at a perfect time in my life and radically affected me.

I had about 3-4 direct family members (same last name) fight for the South (Alabama I believe) and then moved to Texas right after the war. Probably more overall. On my mom's side I had at least 2 ancestors fight and die for the North, with my great-great-great-great grandmother losing her husband and older son to the war.

mockturtle said...

The nice thing about this topic is that...122 comments and the thread is still 100% Inga and Ritmo free.

Yes! Nice, isn't it? :-)

Michael K said...

Perhaps the most striking thing is why now? and why this particular battle? The answer to that is the ever-angry unforgiving, merciless left leaves no area undisturbed, permits no politics free safe zone and no arguement, no matter how petty, is allowed to pass uncontested.

Oh yes, this is just one front in the culture war.

The bakers and photographers have already been defeated. Next comes the people who don;t want to spend two days at a "diversity" Training class.

What is extra amusing is that the "training course," was to be held over a weekend, including a Sunday, and this is a divinity school.

Racialism is the new religion.

Pfau said as far as he knew, Griffiths decided to resign on his own, without any pressure from Duke.

“I profoundly regret his decision and, indeed, have conveyed to him that I regard it as a mistake,”


That is not true. He was severely punished by the administration.

The controversy didn’t stop there, though. In a later email obtained and published by The American Conservative, Griffiths said that he’d been the subject of two separate but related formal disciplinary processes. The first, initiated by Heath, the dean, resulted in a March letter saying he was blocked from participation in faculty and service committee meetings.
Griffiths’s offenses, according to the letter, included refusing to meet with the dean to “discuss expectations for professional behavior as a faculty member and to abide by the agenda of the meeting which I have set.” Griffiths and Heath reportedly did not agree on terms of for such a meeting, and it never happened. Heath threatened further consequences for continuing not to meet with her, including loss of travel and research funds.


The thought police at divinity school. The tuition for that graduate scholl is about $20,000 less than the other Duke schools. That should tell us something.

mockturtle said...

BTW, Michael K..I'm currently enjoying Citizens. It's a little heavy [physically] for me to read in bed, especially with my right arm in a cast. I'm glad it's long, as I hate to finish good books.

Inga said...

"The nice thing about this topic is that...122 comments and the thread is still 100% Inga and Ritmo free.

Yes! Nice, isn't it? :-)"

BOO!

Joe said...

The irony of Jefferson Davis is that his and Lee's arrogance had a large impact on losing the war for the south. Hell, Davis was largely responsible for starting the damn thing too; he wanted a fight with the north and ordered Fort Sumter to be attacked, giving Lincoln a direct cause for northern action.

Bob said...

That statue of King George was carried by boat to Norwalk Connecticut and then by wagon to Litchfield armory where it was cast into over 42000 musket balls (it was made of lead). However, whilst on the way to Litchfield the wagon stopped at the tavern in Wilton and many of the pieces were taken by residents and some thrown in a swamp. In the 1990's local metal detectorist found a substantial piece where his research indicated some might be found. He sold the piece to the Brooklynn museum for around 5 thousand dollars. The landowner, Fred Friendly, sued. It went to the Supreme Court. Friendly won and took the museums money.
Pieces occasionally show up in wills of old time Wilton families.

statues are important symbols

Michael K said...

"The nice thing about this topic is that...122 comments and the thread is still 100% Inga and Ritmo free.

Yes! Nice, isn't it? :-)"

BOO!


OMG! Times to take out the trash !

Hammond X. Gritzkofe said...

"The statues are not getting destroyed. They're being warehoused, potentially to be displayed at some point in a museum setting, buffered by contextualizing historical materials."

Wow, Althouse, you should be writing scholarly social science articles. Did you copyright that phrase or can anybody use it?

DanTheMan said...

>>It's only a matter of time until Lincoln was a Democrat.

No, he will always be a Republican, but a "good one", ie long dead. See R.Reagan for an example.

But I agree with you in general. Soon, he will be gay, if he isn't already.
I'm not sure who the first trans president will be. It can't be Jefferson, since he owned slaves and thus can't be redeemed. Maybe Jackson, since Trump said something nice about him?


Be said...

Conservation or Conservatism? In any event, someone's going to get Offended.

Michael K said...

"Soon, he will be gay, if he isn't already. "

There is already a book alleging he was. It is a cottage industry,

Mac McConnell said...

The Taliban is alive and well in New Orleans.

Paddy O said...

"The Taliban is alive and well in New Orleans."

That's why they're taking down the statues, we don't like people who are or were committed to killing Americans.

Alex said...

Give it another 50 years and Lincoln will have been the first gay, black, transgender, Democrat president!

Alex said...

Hiroshima and Nagasaki are other examples of that.

I'm pretty sure most American public schools already teach that the nuke bombings were a war crime and we should retroactively sentence Harry Truman to 'crimes against humanity' and hang him in effigy or something.

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JAORE said...

One of the minor parts of my past (working) life involved restoration of historic buildings. There was quite a stir over a depot being restored. There, in plain view, was a white stone block marking the "colored" restrooms. Oh the vapors! A couple of brave historians suggested the block should be preserved, perhaps with an explanatory plaque, to show how life was pre-Civil Rights Act. You know, history!

Such horror could not stand, so the block was discarded and replaced by brick.

Civil War? What was that?

mockturtle said...

Yep, history was all a big mistake.

rwnutjob said...

Democrats removing evidence of their complicity in slavery & racism.

sinz52 said...

There is a proper way to display historical artifacts.

Right now, there is a considerable amount of Nazi propaganda on prominent display in Washington DC.

It's in the Holocaust Museum.
Not in the German Embassy.

These statues were not erected as historical artifacts. They were erected to venerate those men.

A better place to put artifacts of Southern generals would be in the Museum of African American History. That's where they belong. As losers who deserved to lose.

Angel-Dyne said...

Paddy O: That's why they're taking down the statues, we don't like people who are or were committed to killing Americans.

I am looking forward to your defense of the cadres when they go after Washington's and Jefferson's monuments.

mockturtle said...

I can't believe anyone thinks the Confederates were evil people.

Kirk Parker said...

Angel-Dyne,

"I think they should all be chloroformed, shanghai'd ..."

Well now, think about this for a moment. If you've gone to all that trouble, why on earth would you release these folks back into society?

readering said...

Interesting dispute going on in Spain. Vote just taken to exhume and move the remains of Francisco Franco from the Catholic Basilica honoring the dead from the Civil War (and where he was supposedly buried against his wishes according to his family). A non-binding resolution passed overwhelmingly in Parliament. Yes folks, he's still dead.