A generation which ignores history has no past and no future. Robert Heinlein
The Confederate Flag is part of our history. That history instructs us about many things that are important today. Honor, courage, grace.
When the Army of Northern Virginia surrendered in April of 1865, Ulysses S. Grant appointed Major General Joshua Chamberlain to formerly accept that surrender. Gen. Chamberlain could have conducted the affair quite differently from the way he chose. Since General Grant had already allowed that the men could retain their mounts if personally owned and the officers could keep their swords and sidearms, it was the weapons and the battle-flags of the army that would be surrendered.
In General Chamberlain’s own words:
“Bayonets were affixed to muskets, arms stacked, and cartridge boxes unslung and hung upon the stacks. Then, slowly and with a reluctance that was appealingly pathetic, the torn and tattered battleflags were either leaned against the stacks or laid upon the ground. The emotion of the conquered soldiery was really sad to witness. Some of the men who had carried and followed those ragged standards through the four long years of strife, rushed, regardless of all discipline, from the ranks, bent about their old flags, and pressed them to their lips with burning tears.
The General did something inspired, he had the Union troops that were formed up perform a military salute. It was an act of chivalry that greatly impressed the Confederate officers and men that had not expected courtesy and respect. It was the beginning of the healing of the wounds of war. General Chamberlain separated the men from the cause, the cause was laid down in front of the Union Standards but the men were welcomed with respect. Those battle flags that had contended against those of the Union had been defeated and surrendered, the men and their memories went home. Dixie was played at the White House by Lincoln’s order. No one went into a Gulag.
Without the Confederate flag and the memorials, statues and names of the Confederate heroes, there is no history. Without history we will make the same mistakes again, and again. As we seem to do doing today, the same mistakes.
(this is an…Obama Era comment…) All the reasons that strong states rights were placed in the Constitution are vindicated by the total wreckage of our economy, our privacy, our safety and our sovereignty. How is that (increasingly) central control of the economy doing? Is everyone happy with the Federal Government listening and reading and patting everyone down (and sometimes feeling us up). Do you think that you have broken any of the thousands of contradictory federal statues today, most of which are really only of concern to the law abiding middle-class. Heard any English spoken on the bus, or the train, or on the street today?
Historically speaking, “Do you still feel that America is a Free Country?”. Or is it that you lack a proper frame of reference?