I know that many of you, like me, will not agree with everything in this article, but not only is it spot on as far as the Battle Flag kerfuffle is concerned, it is one helluva piece of Southern writing.
The Blog of Sterling Price Camp 676
It does not take a majority to prevail... but rather an irate, tireless minority, keen on setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men. - Samuel Adams
Here in Colorado, 9 News just took an unscientific poll on the question, "Should S.C. remove the Confederate flag from Capitol?" . Now, I stress that this is an unscientific poll, but the results are interesting. Almost half the respondents voted "No." Very interesting.
The most recent scientific poll I found online is a 2013 YouGov poll showing:
that while more Americans think that the Confederate flag is a symbol of Southern pride (35%) than think it is a symbol of racism (24%), there is a wide partisan divide in opinion. 43% of Democrats think that the Confederate flag is primarily a symbol of racism, while the majority of Republicans (56%) think that it is instead a symbol of Southern pride, and only 20% say that it is either both a symbol of Southern pride and racism (16%) or just racist (4%).
According to a 2011 Pew Research Center Poll:
Just one-in-ten Americans (9%) have a positive reaction when they see the Confederate flag displayed. Fewer than a third (30%) have a negative reaction, though. A 58%-majority say they have neither a positive or negative reaction when seeing the Confederate flag. Not surprisingly, there are disparate reactions to the Civil War flag of the South among different demographic groups. Far more African Americans than whites have a negative reaction to the Confederate flag (41% to 29%). Still, about as many blacks have no reaction (45%) as a negative reaction to the Confederate flag. College graduates (46%) are more likely than those with some college (33%) or a high school education or less (18%) to have a negative reaction. Partisan differences exist as well. Many more Democrats (44%) have a negative reaction to the Confederate flag than do independents (27%) or Republicans (21%). Fewer than one-in-ten (8%) say they display the Confederate flag in places such as their home or office, on their car or on their clothing; 91% say they do not.
And we're not talking a pool of just 22.5 million. As the polls show, there is a bigger pool of Americans out there in whom we can set those brushfires of liberty. In camp 676 we have gained members who weren't just sons of Confederate veterans who wanted to honor their legacy, but who also, seeing the war being waged against Southern and Middle American culture waged by the Cultural Marxists, have sought solidarity with an organization that symbolizes resistance to tyranny.
Note that Adams says that an "irate" minority can prevail, not a silent or sheepish minority. In order to deliever that knock-out punch, I believe we'll need to become more "irate" as an organization. When I read the official responses of SCV officialdom to this or that assault on Southern heritage, I sometimes think the Southern gentlemanliness of our leadership, as laudable as it is, can sometimes be to our detriment. Sometimes the only way to win the war is to "give them the bayonet" with a rebel yell. What this means in political terms is a steely resolve always to resist, and always to go on the offensive.
Gentlemen, let me submit to you that we need to adopt a new slogan: "No More Appomattoxes." If we'll only become "an irate, tireless minority, keen on setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men", we WILL prevail.
"If (Dylann) Roof's cousin is right, his road to murder began with being rejected by a girl who decided to date a black man instead. Probably would be best if all women were just banned since we inspire so much trouble." - Cathy Locks
One of the condescending comments about the South we often hear from its cultured despisers is, "They're still fighting that war down there." In light of the vehemence re: the Battle Flag we've seen from those cultured despisers in the past few days, one wonders who's REALLY "still fighting that war".
Great job, Buck!
Our heritage is under serious attack. As you know, we have a major situation in South Carolina. Every Compatriot is urged to email the members of the South Carolina Legislature and urge them to keep the flag flying as a memorial to our brave Confederate dead. Time is of the essence. If the forces of political correctness win in South Carolina they will soon come after the monuments and flags in other states.
It is imperative that you act today. And please encourage friends and family members to do the same.
You can email every State Senator here:
You can email every State House member here:
As always be polite.
Charles Kelly Barrow
Sons of Confederate Veterans
Gonna Miss Her. Y'all have to read this one. (And look up the meaning of a fortiori.)
I think this one needs a little Southern theme music, and a little comic relief besides:
You know, the steady stream of shrill illogic we hear from the intellectual derelicts and emotional cripples who make up the American left doesn't surprise us anymore. But neither should the phenomenon we're now seeing from certain mainstream "conservatives", including GOP candidates for public office, in their call to furl the Battle F" ag currently flying near the SC state capitol. Why should it not surprise us? Because, as many Southern conservatives have pointed out, they aren't true conservatives. The Southern presbyterian theologian and Confederate chaplain R.L. Dabney sized up what he called "nothern conservatism" in a pithy quote:
This (northern conservatism) is a party which never conserves anything. Its history has been that it demurs to each aggression of the progressive party, and aims to save its credit by a respectable amount of growling, but always acquiesces at last in the innovation. What was the resisted novelty of yesterday is today one of the accepted principles of conservatism; it is now conservative only in affecting to resist the next innovation, which will tomorrow be forced upon its timidity and will be succeeded by some third revolution; to be denounced and then adopted in its turn. American conservatism is merely the shadow that follows Radicalism as it moves forward towards perdition. It remains behind it, but never retards it, and always advances near its leader. . . . Its impotency is not hard, indeed, to explain. It is worthless because it is the conservatism of expediency only, and not of sturdy principle. It intends to risk nothing serious for the sake of the truth, and has no idea of being guilty of the folly of martyrdom. It always when about to enter a protest very blandly informs the wild beast whose path it essays to stop, that its “bark is worse than its bite,” and that it only means to save its manners by enacting its decent role of resistance: The only practical purpose which it now serves in American politics is to give enough exercise to Radicalism to keep it “in wind,” and to prevent its becoming pursy and lazy, from having nothing to whip.
We have this, for instance, from Southern Baptist commentator Russell Moore:
Happily, some of our compatriots in the SCV and without are publishing some pretty hard-hitting, eloquent commentary in response. Here is a Facebook aquaintance's response to the Moore article:
I love Moore, but this is just disappointing and dismissive.
First, what precisely is he talking about? A confederate flag? Where? The only flag I'm aware of that's even come up is the one on a war memorial near the South Carolina capitol. Somebody at the Washington Post decided to get up-in-arms about that flag not being flown at half-mast (it is a fixed flag, which can't be lowered). Now suddenly it's an issue? A grave offense to Black Americans? Why is the American flag at the Iwo Jima memorial here in D.C. not a grave offense to Japanese Americans, who were unjustly interned during the 1940s? Why is our flag, displayed mere meters away from the Native American History Museum (also here in D.C.) not a slap in the face of those displaced from their homes during the Trail of Tears? Our flag, especially in these contexts, is a symbol of precisely that to many. The only difference is children haven't been taught relentlessly in public schools for the past several generations to equate the American flag with racism and oppression.
Second, what does this have to do with the victims of the Charleston shooting? How does calling on South Carolina to villainize an entire generation of their ancestors, and refuse even to honor their sacrifices defending their homes in battle 150 years ago help the families of those killed at the AME church this week? Does removing any historical references that could potentially offend African-Americans bring them justice? Is this a call to never again breathe a word of praise for the Confederacy? Are we really at the point where half of our great-great grandfathers are only to be spoken of in hushed tones, as Saturday morning cartoon villains, or not at all?
I'm really tired of Americans lashing out at symbols when people do bad things. It's the NRA's fault when someone shoots up a school. It's Christian patriarchy's fault when a homeschooler molests his sisters. It's a war memorial's fault when someone shoots up a black church.
We don't even know what personal responsibility means anymore, and nothing can be a crime, anymore. Everything is an institutional injustice, an act of hate, a microaggression, "the man" is out to get you in some way. Have you seen the pictures from the vigils held at the AME church? Have you seen all of those racist, neo-Confederate South Carolinians gathering together, black and white, to mourn the victims of this lone actor's atrocities? You take a look at those pictures and tell me about the institutional racism in that community. Tell me about how Dylann Roof took one look at the Charleston Confederate War Memorial and decided to do what he did.
You can't, because that story is nothing but political opportunism and more lashing out at symbols. But symbols don't kill people any more than guns do. People kill people. And you can take down all the symbols you like, fairly or unfairly, consign the memories of all non-New-York-Times-approved historical figures to the ash heap of history, and even spit on their graves, but you still won't save a single life. You'll only increase the kind of ignorance and historical snobbery that blinds people to the atrocities of their own day, and makes interning American citizens, okay. Because we're on the right side of history, don't you see? We took down that damned Confederate flag!
Another Facebook response:
People have a national identity as well as tribal identity that should be revered by those who share it and respected by those who do not as they would want others to respect theirs. That's my sentiment on the Confederate Battle Flag. It's a tribal identity that a diverse group of our fellow Americans of good character in all things have. So let them have it in the places where common sense and historical truth make sense to have it so long as the Stars and Stripes have precedence.
And lastly, National Review's David French explains why the grounds of the SC state capitol is one of those places where the display of the Battle Flag makes sense:
Dont' Tear Down the Confederate Battle Flag. Some salient excerpts:
I’ve followed this most recent round of debate over the Confederate battle flag with perhaps greater than normal interest. In the immediate aftermath of mass shootings, there is always a demand to “do something.” Always, that demand involves gun control — typically, gun-control measures that wouldn’t have actually stopped the shooting in question. But often there’s something more. In the aftermath of the Gabby Giffords shooting, the Left demanded “civility” — despite zero evidence that the barking-mad perpetrator was motivated by any form of political discourse. Now the demand is to remove the Confederate battle flag from a Confederate memorial in South Carolina (and presumably elsewhere). The Atlantic’s Ta-Nehisi Coates, with characteristic vehemence, says, “Take down the flag. Take it down now.” His call — and others — have resonated around the web.
There’s a disturbing habit on the Left of trying to find the position that renders one especially virtuous in their identity politics culture — regardless of its real-world impact — and then sneering from that high ground at all who dissent. . . .
But there are other difficult truths. Among them, when the war began, it was not explicitly a war to end slavery. Indeed, had the Union quickly accomplished its war aims, slavery would have endured, at least for a time. When hundreds of thousands of southern men took up arms (most of them non-slave-owning), many of them fought with the explicit belief that they were standing in the shoes of the Founding Fathers, men who’d exercised their own right of self-determination to separate from the mother Country. Others simply saw an invading army marching into their state — into their towns and across their farms — and chose to resist. And no one can doubt their valor. Both sides displayed breathtaking courage, but the South poured itself into the fight to an extent the modern American mind simply can’t comprehend. If you extrapolated Southern losses into our current American population, the war would cost the lives of a staggering 9 million men, with at least an equivalent number injured. To understand the impact of that human loss, I’d urge you to read Harvard president Drew Gilpin Faust’s Republic of Suffering — a book that explores the psychological impact of omnipresent, mass-scale death on southern culture. Those men fought against a larger, better-supplied force, yet — under some of history’s more brilliant military commanders — were arguably a few better-timed attacks away from prevailing in America’s deadliest conflict. Then, the defeated survivors came home to the consequences of total war. Large sections of the South were simply devastated — crops burned, homes burned, and livestock slaughtered or scattered. Entire cities lay in ruin. . . .
It is telling that the South’s chosen, enduring symbol of the Confederacy wasn’t the flag of the Confederate States of America — the slave state itself — but the battle flag of the Army of Northern Virginia, Robert E. Lee’s army. Lee was the reluctant Confederate, the brilliant commander, the man who called slavery a “moral and political evil,” and the architect — by his example — of much of the reconciliation between North and South. His virtue grew in the retelling — and modern historians still argue about his true character — but the symbolism was clear. If the South was to rebuild, it would rebuild under Lee’s banner. Since that time, the battle flag has grown to mean many things, including evil things. Flying it as a symbol of white racial supremacy is undeniably vile, and any official use of the flag for that purpose should end, immediately. Flying it over monuments to Confederate war dead is simply history. States should no more remove a Confederate battle flag from a Confederate memorial than they should chisel away the words on the granite or bulldoze the memorials themselves. . . .
I no longer have a battle flag at my house. The American flag flies proudly from (by far) the tallest flagpole in the neighborhood — a gift from my father-in-law, raised when I was deployed. But we have a room in our home that honors my family’s history of service. On one side of a framed picture from my own time in Iraq is a painting from the Revolutionary War, on the other side is a picture tracing the history of the Confederate Army in the Civil War. It’s all a part of the complicated, messy picture of who I am — of who we are. Removing the Confederate flag from Confederate memorials doesn’t change that history, it merely helps shroud it in ignorance. The flag should stay.
Just goes to show you that we cannot rely on SCOTUS, in its current configuration, to consistently protect free speech.
From PrawfsBlog's critique:
Justice Alito's dissent rightly observed that the case sets a dangerous precedent, allowing the government to regulate any offensive speech on government property simply by retaining final approval authority over that speech. Justice Alito refocused the historical analysis of licenses plates on the point AFTER the development of specialty plate programs, concluding that "history here does not suggest that the messages at issue are government speech." He also examined how the Texas license plate approval process actually worked: Texas accepts all private messages submitted "except those, like the SCV plate, that would offend some who viewed them." The mere fact that Texas has given its "blessing" to the private speech on most plates does not make those plates government speech. Instead, "Texas, in effect, sells [license plate] space to those who wish to use it to express a personal message," and by doing so, creates a limited public forum. Texas' decision to reject the SCV plate, or indeed to reject any plate on grounds of offensiveness, was therefore unconstitutional viewpoint discrimination.
Read entire article here.
150 years ago today.
After four years of arduous service marked by unsurpassed courage and fortitude, the Army of Northern Virginia has been compelled to yield to overwhelming numbers and resources.
I need not tell the brave survivors of so many hard fought battles, who have remained steadfast to the last, that I have consented to this result from no distrust of them; but feeling that valor and devotion could accomplish nothing that could compensate for the loss that must hav...e attended the continuance of the contest, I determined to avoid the useless sacrifice of those whose past services have endeared them to their countrymen.
By the terms of the agreement, officers and men can return to their homes and remain until exchanged. You will take with you the satisfaction that proceeds from a consciousness of duty faithfully performed; and I earnestly pray that a Merciful God will extend to you His blessings and protection.
With an unceasing admiration of your constancy and devotion to your Country, and a grateful remembrance of your kind and generous consideration for myself, I bid you all an affectionate farewell.
General Robert E. Lee, CSA, Farewell Address to the Army of Northern Virginia
Salute to the Confederate Flag: "I salute the Confederate flag with affection, reverence and undying devotion to the Cause for which it stands."
We ain't comin down!
Members of Sterling Price Camp 676 (Denver) and the Military Order of Stars and Bars
Lt. Commander Mark Slater, Camp 676
Members of Jefferson Davis Camp 175, Colorado Springs
The Duggers, Camp 175
Lt. Commander Mark Slater and Compatriot Roy Poole, Camp 676
Don Creamer (r, Camp 175) receives this year's Knight of the Confederacy Award. With him to present the award are Division Commander Patrick Gerity (l) and Compatriot Roy Poole (m).
Approximately 35 people attended, representing several Colorado SCV camps, United Daughters of the Confederacy, and the Military Order of the Stars and Bars. A great time was had by all!
Compatriot Don Creamer, Camp 175, received this year's Knight of the Confederacy award. Congratulations Don! And many thanks for all your hard work for the Cause.
Candlelight ceremony, where each attendee read the name and unit of his or her Confederate forebear.
"Captain, my religious belief teaches me to feel as safe in battle as in bed. God has fixed the time for my death. I do not concern myself about that, but to be always ready, no matter when it may overtake me. Captain, that is the way all men should live, and then all would be equally brave." General Thomas J. Jackson, Battle of First Manassas (Bull Run).